एक बुक जर्नल: The Great God Pan by Arthur Machen

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Great God Pan by Arthur Machen

Rating : 2.5/5
Finished : 14th November 2013 


The great god pan is a novellette by Arthur Machen published in  in 1894.
The story begins at the house of Dr Raymond who is a doctor of transcendental medicine.
'I have devoted myself to transcendental medicine for the last twenty years.'
He calls his friend Clark to witness an experiment in which he'd perform a brain  surgery on his ward Mary. Dr Raymond believes that after the surgery Mary would be able to see and percieve things which were not visible to normal humans
'I am not in the position of Browne Faber and the specialists, I am perfectly instructed as to the possible functions of those nerve-centers in the scheme of things. With a touch I can bring them into play, with a touch, I say, I can set free the current, with a touch I can complete the communication between this world of sense and—we shall be able to finish the sentence later on. Yes, the knife is necessary; but think what that knife will effect. It will level utterly the solid wall of sense, and probably, for the first time since man was made, a spirit will gaze on a spirit-world. Clarke, Mary will see the god Pan'
The operation's successful but Mary that awakes is no longer lucid.
'Suddenly, as they watched, they heard a long-drawn sigh, and suddenly did the colour that had vanished return to the girl's cheeks, and suddenly her eyes opened. Clarke quailed before them. They shone with an awful light, looking far away, and a great wonder fell upon her face, and her hands stretched out as if to touch what was invisible; but in an instant the wonder faded, and gave place to the most awful terror. The muscles of her face were hideously convulsed, she shook from head to foot; the soul seemed struggling and shuddering within the house of flesh'.

The first chapter ends here and Clark has mostly put this thing out of his mind.But he's still interested in the unseen and thus he has created a document called,Memoirs to prove the Existence of the Devil,for himself in which he writes eperiences which are ought to be conclusive proof of  that devil exists among the humans.
In this he comes across an account told to him by a doctor friend by a woman name Helen.
Then there is Mr Villiers whose friend Charles Herbert,once a wealthy man but now reduced to begging,blames his wife for his downfall. Mr Villiers becomes intrigured about Herbert's wife and decides to solve the mystery as  to where she is now and how come she caused the transformation in his friend.
Helen is now 23 years old and Austin describes her aptly as
'She would be called very handsome, I suppose, and yet there is something about her face which I didn't like. The features are exquisite, but the expression is strange'
Meanwhile west end of london is seeing a spate of suicides and every one is baffled what's causing this so called sucidal mania among people who are wealthy and had no reason to detest their lives.
The book was an okay read. I liked the  concept of the book but it was not like something which would keep you guessing or keep you up all night to see what the end's going to be.In short i didn't find it  much intriguing as it couldn't hold my interest.

As the book is in Public Domain you can easily download it from Project Gutenberg.
Here's the link:
Project gutenberg link - The Great God Pan

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