Superfluous Matter
Books - Strange Tales by Rudyard Kipling

After two staggeringly epic sized reads I decided to change things up with a small collection of short stories by Rudyard Kipling.

Growing up I participated in the Scouting movement for many years (Beavers, Cubs, Scouts and Venturers) and this movement was heavily influenced by Kipling's well known works "The Jungle Book", "Just So Stories", and "Kim". So when I was last browsing at BMV and noticed a collection of horror stories by Kipling I snapped it up right away. I had no idea that his range was so broad and I was intrigued to see his take on the genre.

The stories were mainly influenced by his time spent in India but there were a few that took their inspiration from the first World War. I preferred the ones set in India. Most seemed to be based on local myth and folklore, twisted and shaded by Victorian, colonial overload ideology. A lot of the dialogue is frightfully condescending and racist, but it also seems historically accurate given what I know of the history of Britain's rule over India.

As for the "horror" aspect, having grown up reading Stephen King I didn't find any of the stories particularly frightening but there were a few good skin-tinglingly creepy moments.

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