01 February 2010

The Weird of Cornell Woolrich: “Jane Brown’s Body”

Wow, February already?

I’m doing something on Black Gate today that is unusual for anybody who only reads my posts at that site, but which won’t surprise anybody who hangs around this place. Yes, I’ve finally found an excuse to talk about Cornell Woolrich at Black Gate!

And how did I pull this off? Woolrich did write some classic “weird tales” involving creepy speculative fiction elements. People who read H. P. Lovecraft and Robert E. Howard should be advised of this fact. Just spreading the gospel of Woolrich, part of my job.

The Woolrich horror story I’m discussing today is the novella “Jane Brown’s Body.” Which mixes some very bizarre elements together.

Read the horrible, putrescent details here.

This was also an excuse to post one of Harry Clarke’s wonderful illustrations for Edgar Allan Poe, drawn to go with the story “The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar.” The picture fits Woolrich’s story disturbingly well.

I promise to only use the word “putrescent” gratuitously from now on.