’31 Tales of Terror’ #15: The Striding-Place

*Title: The Striding-Place by Gertrude Atherton
Date Read: 24 October 2008
Available Online?: YES
Briefly: It’s the grouse-shooting season and Weigall, instead of residing at the estate castle at the end of the day, with the rest of his hunting party, decides to wander through the woods in hunt of a close school friend, who shooting on an adjoining estate a few days earlier, disappeared without trace. Emerging from the woods at the striding-place (the Strid) that narrows the River Wharf, Weigall happens on a sight that jumps his whole body into action.
Afterthoughts: This story is probably more noted for its ending rather than anything else. Up to that point, or at least to the final paragraphs, it’s a fairly uneventful affair. Atherton certainly writes quite poetically, but for me there is little build-up or tension in the story. Overall I was quite disappointed with it; except for that final paragraph of course.
Notable Quote: “But it was no one of these things that sat on Weigall’s mind as, when the other men went up to bed, he let himself out of the castle and sauntered down to the river. His intimate friend, the companion of his boyhood, the chum of his college days, his fellow-traveller in many lands, the man for whom he possessed stronger affection than for all men, had mysteriously disappeared two days ago, and his track might have sprung to the upper air for all trace he had left behind him.”

Rating: ★★☆☆☆

*Story read as part of the 31 Tales of Terror reading challenge.

About Rob

Rob, a self-confessed bibliophile, is without any hope of rehabilitation. He gets unnaturally excited over anything book-shaped, and if book sniffing were a crime then he would have been locked up years ago (which wouldn't bother him in the slightest provided his cell was lined with books).