The Witnesses Are Gone

by Joel Lane
Release date: April 1, 2009
Type: speculative fiction
Genres: fantasy, horror

A novella.

The Witnesses Are Gone is a first-hand account of a journey into the underworld in all the wrong places. Martin Swann, its narrator, moves into an old house and finds a box of videocassettes in the garden shed. One of them has a bootleg copy of a morbid and disturbing film by a little-known French director, Jean Rien.

Martin's search for Rien's other films, and for a way to understand them, draws him away from his home and his lover into a shadow realm of secrets, rituals and encroaching decay. An encounter with a schizoid film journalist in Gravesend leads to a drug-fuelled vision in Paris – and finally to the Mexican desert where a grim revelation awaits him.

The Witnesses Are Gone updates the Orpheus myth for a world losing touch with reality. Blending supernatural horror with eroticism and warped comedy, it takes a look behind the screen on which our collective nightmares play.

(updated 2010-09-07)

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