Found and Lost

Meghan Arcuri, "Found and Lost" in Under Twin Suns: Alternate Histories of the Yellow Sign, ed. James Chambers (Hippocampus Press: 2021). 

My opening murmur is usually spoiler-free; however, this post reveals some details that particularly spoiler sensitive readers may wish to avoid.

The King in Yellow stories that I enjoy the most are usually the ones that capture the mood and mystery of the original Robert W. Chambers—the stories that don't answer the questions. In that tradition, two of my favorites are Karl Edward Wagner's "River of Night's Dreaming" and Sarah Read's "The Inn of the Fates." Although certainly parts of Arcuri's short story retain the yellow-mystery and leave the reader with lots of questions, "Found and Lost" is, first and foremost, a cleverly creative story that gives us a peek into what Mr. Hawberk and Louis Castaigne, from "The Repairer of Reputations," are doing when they are off-page in the original Chambers story. It turns out that these two are up to a lot more than what you might have suspected, and their actions cast Hildred Castaigne in a very different light than what your pet theory of Hildred probably propounds. It is an intriguing suggestion! As a bonus, Arcuri gives us an interesting link between "The Repairer of Reputations" and "The Yellow Sign." What did you think?


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