Tales To Terrify No 16 Christopher Fowler

April 27, 2012 by Drew S

Coming Up

The Whisperer in Darkness (film) by Larry Santoro

Short Fiction Memory by H.P. Lovecraft 08:40

Fact: Horror Anarchy and Doom by Andy Remic 12:40

Poetry: Thumb by Martin Mundt 19:00

Main Fiction: The 11th Day by Christopher Fowler 26:20

Narrator: Kim Lakin-Smith


  1. So….? What did we all think? Will you be watching “The Whisperer in Darkness” soon? What’re your thoughts on Lovecraft in general? How about… And what did you think about… And Marty’s “poem”…? And “The Eleventh Day” how about that ending? Tell me you saw it coming…

    Come on, let’s jump in!

  2. Thank you Larry and the team for such an interesting podcast. The highlight of the past week was discovering you. I’ve listened to about a third of the episodes now and will try to go back and leave constructive comments on what I’ve heard when I can.

    As for this episode, I enjoyed learning about the Whisper In Darkness film, Andy’s fact article, and Martin’s poem, but the highlight was, for me, Christopher Fowler’s story. I thought to start the narration might proceed a little too slowly to hold my interest, but in the end the pace and cool tone of Kim Lakin-Smith’s reading proved well suited to the nature of the tale. When the situation of Mia and Galia(?) first became clear and I connected it to the story’s title, I felt a rising sense of dread. I won’t put any spoilers here, but that particular circumstance happens to press a mental button of mine as I’m sure it does to many of us. Near the end I found myself wondering “Where is this going to go?” and hoping there would be more to it than the obvious trajectory charted thus far. I wasn’t disappointed by Chris’ resolution. When I thought about how the story could’ve developed from the initial set-up I was bracing myself for a horror much more visceral than what was actually revealed. The last section is indeed frightening, but in a subtle, almost underhand way. ‘The Eleventh Day’ falls into that special class of stories – like many of Roald Dahl’s ‘Tales of the Unexpected’ – that only begins exercising its effect on the reader/listener’s mind once it’s over. I’d imagine it’s quite a trick for any author to pull off. The more I ponder Galia’s motives the more I appreciate the work. No Larry, I didn’t see the ending coming. I listen to a few different podcasts such as the Escape Artists ones as well as Starship Sofa (where I first had the pleasure of hearing your voice) and it’s always nice to read other listeners’ comments on stories you’ve also enjoyed. There seems many complaints on these shows’ forums from listeners who are disappointed to have guessed at a tale’s outcome, and I take this to mean there’s a number of people who actively try and work out what the ‘twists’ will be as they listen. That’s good if it works for them, but my own approach (in all forms of entertainment but especially with audio) is to refrain as much as possible from thinking ahead as I listen as I don’t want to get ahead of myself and spoil the surprises. (Of course, I appreciate it when a writer meets me half-way with this approach and doesn’t make any developments too obvious!)

  3. Absolutely, Greg. “The Eleventh Day” is a nasty tale that goes one way, stage by stage, for most of it, then twists itself into a chillier, nastier story in the last few breaths. I’ve become a Fowler fan of late and hope we can get more of his work on the show.

    If you can, have a look at both “Whisperer…” and “The Call of Cthulhu” from the HPLHS group. You might also want to have a listen to a few of their ‘radio’ dramas.

    Thanks for the comment, Greg, hope to hear more from you.

  4. I began to suspect the ending of the 11th day at the very end, but the story was so skillfully woven that I didn’t want to go there until the very end. Really enjoying the podcast Larry. I did not think I was really much of a fan of horror as a genre, but the chilling, Lovecraftian, Edgar Allen Poe type of story I really enjoy.

  5. The reading of that poem? Masterly!

    The 11th day? well done, very well presented.

    Love the Lovecraft! Larry, you are a very good reader. Really, a joy.
    Will now go out and get Whisperer in Darkness… and their other films and works.
    Didn’t see the main story’s end coming. Thought it was turning into a love story. Quite touching… then…

Links to this post
  1. […] Tales To Terrify #16 – Christopher Fowler [Horror] […]

  2. […] Elevator (April 29) Why can’t anybody get trapped-on-an-elevator suspense movies right?  It seems like such a no-brainer!  This one is particularly bad, on account of a really annoying cast, including the obnoxious, hideous friend from The Single Guy, here playing an obnoxious, hideous stand-up comedian.  Skip this crap.  If you’re interested in experiencing a really great elevator story, I recommend the short story The 11th Day by Christopher Fowler.  An audio version is available on this podcast. […]

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