Two interwoven memoirs of love, loss, and family with a haunted, frightening edge.
In 2000, American Fantasy Press published an unassuming chapbook titled The Man on the Ceiling. Inside was a dark, surreal, discomfiting story of the horrors that can befall a family. It was so powerful that it won the Bram Stoker Award, International Horror Guild Award, and World Fantasy Award--the only work ever to win all three. Now, Melanie Tem and Steve Rasnic Tem have re-imagined the story, expanding on the ideas to create a compelling work that examines how people find a family, how they hold a family together despite incomprehensible tragedy, and how, in the end, they find love.
Loosely autobiographical, The Man on the Ceiling has the feel of a family portrait painted by Salvador Dali, where story and reality blend to find the one thing that neither can offer alone: truth.
With this nightmarish series of vignettes, the Tems take the reader on a jolting, surreal journey through partially autobiographical episodes of their family life. This narrative is a complete reworking of their novella (winner of the 2000 World Fantasy, Bram Stoker and IHG awards) of the same name, expanding on the themes of family, loss and dreadful imagination. How does the tragic death of a child affect the entire family and even the house they live in? Why do they wrestle so with the demons of imagination and guilt? The authors addresss these questions in a stylized, stream-of-consciousness give and take, painting heartrending pictures of day-to-day life as parents, children and lovers. This visceral, psychological view of the horrors that occur in an average person's life will draw in readers with delicate, exquisitely detailed and almost hypnotic language.