Saturday, February 5, 2011

Review: The Stalls of Barchester Cathedral by M.R. James

More Ghost Stories:
The Stalls of Barchester Cathedral
by Montague Rhodes James
Edward Arnold & Co. (1911)

Dr. Black is cataloguing the Barchester’s Cathedral library, when he discovers a box containing some fifty year old diaries.
The diaries concern the death of Dr. Haynes, a former Archdeacon of the Cathedral.

During winter time Dr. Haynes is alone in the cathedral’s apartment, because his sister’s health doesn’t allow her to stay.
Dr. Haynes diaries tell of ordinary events, but soon after the main theme of the diaries are the noises of cats in the cathedral (although Dr. Haynes has never owned a cat).
‘The hall and the staircase seemed to be unusually full of what I can only call movement without sound.’ (page 157)

Has a carved figure on the stalls of Barchester Cathedral something to do with these noises?

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