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Naben Ruthnum



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24 May 2022


It's 1900, and Louise Wilk is taking her dying husband from Manhattan to the upstate orchard estate where he grew up. Dr. Edward Wilk is wasting away from a mysterious affliction acquired in a strange encounter: but Louise soon realizes that her husband's worsening condition may not be a disease at all, but a transformative phase of existence that will draw her in as much more than a witness.

""At the bitter end of the 19th century, a loyal wife cares tenderly for her dissolute husband as he nears his death from a mysterious, gruesomely corrosive disease. Helpmeet by Naben Ruthnum is a sumptuous excursion into surreal body horror and an unsparing exploration of the extreme frontiers of connubial devotion. Ruthnum delivers a uniquely unsettling Gothic love story-and it is first and foremost a love story-evoking the grisly Edwardian tales of W.W. Jacobs, William Hope Hodgson and Algernon Blackwood, while drawing in such modern masters as Barker, Del Toro and Cronenberg. Brief enough to be read in an evening, it holds certain images so grotesque that they will linger in your dreams for weeks.""- David Demchuk, Award-winning author of The Bone Mother, and RED X"
Imprint:   Miscellaneous
Dimensions:   Height: 216mm,  Width: 140mm,  Spine: 6mm
Weight:   127g
ISBN:   9781988964386
ISBN 10:   1988964385
Publication Date:  
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Reviews for Helpmeet

Naben Ruthnum's Helpmeet is a remarkable throwback. The style, the precise prose, the lush imagery, the dreadful sense of wheels turning just past the reader's sightline-I devoured it in a few delighted hours and it took me back to my teenage years, to afternoons squirreled away in the corner of my local library reading Clark Ashton Smith, Robert Chambers, Algernon Blackwood and the other great elder wordsmiths I cut my horror teeth on. - Craig Davidson, Author of The Saturday Night Ghost Club An everyday tragedy spirals into a medical mystery and then into something much darker and more disquieting, executed in prose that glitters like candlelight on an open wound. I loved this intensely claustrophobic study of a complicated marriage twisting itself into something monstrous. - Premee Mohamed, Author of the Beneath the Rising Trilogy In a wholly unique spot between the New York society novels of Henry James and Edith Wharton and the best body horror of David Cronenberg lurks the strange, disturbing and ultimately transcendent novella Helpmeet. Naben Ruthnum's pitch-perfect pastiche is as all-consuming as the disease at its heart, a fever dream of a story as original, elegantly written and chilling as anything I've read in recent memory. - Pasha Malla, Author of Fugue States, and Kill the Mall Naben Ruthnum's succinctly brilliant Helpmeet finds the thin line between intimacy and body horror, and blurs it to create a unique love story that is as moving as it is disturbing. - Indrapramit Das, Author of The Devourers

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