Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The List of Seven

“Rummaging through his bag for the box of ammunition, Doyle heard a creak and looked up to see one of the gray hoods opening the window above the bed. Grabbing the first solid object he could find, he reared back and hurled it at the creature, hitting it dead square in the center of the hood, knocking it away from the window. They heard a clatter of roof shingle, then a heavy impact below.

The man picked up the the projectile from beneath the window.

“Good old Blavatsky,” he said, with a brief admiring glance handing the edition of Psychic Self-Defense back to Doyle. “Off we go, then...”
- Mark Frost, The List of Seven.
I picked up a new copy of The List of Seven today, because my old copy was falling apart and I desired a bit of a “Pick-Me-Up” while recovering from being sick. The novel is one of my favorite “occult/theosophical historical fiction” pieces, ranking up there with the works of Alan Moore. The author, Mark Frost, should be well known to most of this blog's readers:
he helped write and produced Twin Peaks in the early 1990s.

It follows the story of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and the “thieving hero” named Jack Sparks, in their efforts to stop the Black Brotherhood (the author uses Blavatsky's Dark Brotherhood, rather than Fortune and Crowley's term) from taking over the Victorian world.

Frost may be off at a few points - for example, Dion Fortune (who also appears in the novel, albeit briefly) wrote Psychic Self-Defense - but it still holds one's interest long enough and accomplishes the goal of being a “ripping good Adventure Story.”

I heartily recommend it to any occultist seeking some pulp-fictional goodness. Finally, to wrap this up with a couple more quotes:

“And remember,” she said, “when the path appears impassable, when your prospects are ruined, when even death seems imminent, you will have no other choice but to destroy the mountain. In this way, and this way only, will you enter the New Country...”
- Hellen Blavatsky, The List of Seven.
“Would you like to drink with me?” she asked, “I recommend something stiff.”
She pulled a bottle from her bag. Fortune produced some glasses.
“Vodka,” she said, offering him the glass.
“I thought spiritual teaching argued against the use of hard liquor,” Doyle said lightly.
“Most spiritual teaching is hogwash. We must still move through the world as the personality into which we were born. I am a Russian peasant woman, and vodka has a most agreeable effect upon me. Na zdorovia.”
- Mark Frost, The List of Seven.


Lavanah said...

I knew the name Mark Frost was familiar!

The Scribbler said...

Knockin' back a couple shots of "Stoli" and chewin' the fat with ol' Helena P. Now that's a bizarre fantasy. Sign me up.