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Casting the Runes | [M. R. James]

Casting the Runes

The tale of a man who unwittingly angers a sorcerer, who is assumed by some Monty scholars to be based on the self-styled 'Great Beast,' occultist Aleister Crowley. Montague Rhodes James was a noted British mediaeval scholar and provost of King's College, Cambridge (1905–1918) and of Eton College (1918–1936). He is best remembered for his ghost stories which are widely regarded as among the finest in English literature.
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Publisher's Summary

The tale of a man who unwittingly angers a sorcerer, who is assumed by some Monty scholars to be based on the self-styled 'Great Beast,' occultist Aleister Crowley.

Montague Rhodes James was a noted British mediaeval scholar and provost of King's College, Cambridge (1905–1918) and of Eton College (1918–1936). He is best remembered for his ghost stories which are widely regarded as among the finest in English literature.

One of James' most important achievements was to redefine the ghost story for the new century by dispensing with many of the formal Gothic trappings of his predecessors, and replacing them with more realistic contemporary settings.

"Montague Rhodes James has an intelligent and scientific knowledge of human nerves and feelings; and knows just how to apportion statement, imagery, and subtle suggestions in order to secure the best results with his readers," HP Lovecraft.

Actor David Suchet is best known for his definitive portrayal of Hercule Poirot, the Belgian detective created by the legendary mystery author Agatha Christie, in a number of international television productions. He narrates his story in Poirot and Me.

©1904 M. R. James (P)2013 Audible Ltd

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (27 )
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4.4 (26 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Britt Aamodt Minnesota 04-30-15
    Britt Aamodt Minnesota 04-30-15 Member Since 2015

    just one more book lover

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    100
    38
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Suchet does M.R. James so well"

    I think i have five different versions of M.R. James stories, each with a different read. I love Derek Jacobi. But David Suchet really nailed this and the other James stories on Audible. I heard things in the stories i had not heard before.

    This story was the basis of the excellent B horror flick from the 1950s, Curse of the Demon (Night of the Demon) with Dana Andrews. Really suspenseful film with decent effects for the time. Love the short story more. Has an academic air. I guess James was an Oxford (?) don. Comes thru. But he is a master of psychological horror. Can see how he might have influenced Lovecraft.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Paul D
    Halland, United Kingdom
    1/17/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Classic spook tale"
    If you could sum up Casting the Runes in three words, what would they be?

    Classic ghost story


    What was your reaction to the ending? (No spoilers please!)

    Ok, no great suprises or "ah" moments. A natural ending to a very typical 19th C (18th?) ghost story.


    What does David Suchet bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

    A very good reading in appropriate classic style


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    No


    Any additional comments?

    Interesting and different listen. Made a pleasant change to listen to a short. Nice appetizer but dont think i could manage a whole meal.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Helen
    London
    1/4/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Classic spooky story, great reading."

    The BBC used to do one of these stories every Christmas and though I was able to get them on DVD, they were rather dated productions. The stories themselves seem less dated and this particular reading is just right. David Suchet is somehow classic without being dated or mannered. Sit your family down and play them this one dark winter night.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Kaggy
    United Kingdom
    12/7/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "An encounter with evil"

    Yet another brilliant tale from M R James and told with perfection by David Suchet. This is about an encounter with an evil man hell bent on revenge. It is also fascinating to hear that the character is based on one of M R James's contemporaries. This must have ruffled a few feathers in its day!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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