Note! This book has been reissued by Titan Books as Ruby in 2020.
Stardust: The Ruby Castle Stories.
Introduction by Robert Shearman.
Michael Gomez is thirteen and he is a chess prodigy. He has no experience of losing until now, and as he struggles to come to terms with a major defeat, he finds himself drawn into a world he thought existed only in the movies.
The woman of his dreams is Ruby Castle, a charismatic beauty famous for her roles in horror films and then notorious for murdering her married lover in a jealous rage. Ruby’s glory days are long behind her, but for Michael she is the only escape he knows from the world of chess. Walking home across Blackheath Common he is apprehended by the Puppeteer, the evil genius of the film that made Castle famous. The man should not exist and yet somehow he does.
The stories collected in Stardust are themselves the story of Ruby Castle, told in snapshots and fleeting glimpses and secret histories, in tales repeated and reinvented by those who fall under her spell: her childhood sweetheart, an antiquarian bookseller with a passion for magical artefacts, the mistress of the poet who was once Castle’s lover, a young girl in a future Russia who dreams of the stars. Worlds collide, and the boundaries between the real and the fantastic begin to break down. Is Ruby Castle a living person or a collective fantasy? By the time the final page of Stardust is turned, the world that Castle created through her films has become dangerously indistinguishable from our own.
Stardust is the lure of fame, the fallout from a burning rocket, the evanescent glister of a vanished dream.
- The Lammas Worm
- The Gateway
- Wreck of the Julia
- Red Queen
Nina Allan was born in Whitechapel, London, grew up in the Midlands and West Sussex, and studied Russian literature at the University of Exeter and Corpus Christi College, Oxford. She wrote her first short story at the age of six. Recurring obsessions include old clocks and rare insects, forgotten manuscripts and abandoned houses. Writers who have inspired and continue to inspire her include among many others Vladimir Nabokov, Iris Murdoch, Joyce Carol Oates, Paul Auster, J. G Ballard, Roberto Bolano, M. John Harrison and of course Christopher Priest, her partner and first reader. They live and work in the historic seaside town of Hastings, East Sussex.
Nina's stories have appeared regularly in premier British
PS Showcase :: Series
PS Showcase is a series of short story mini-collections from some of genre fiction\'s best up-and-coming writers.
Publisher: PS Publishing.