When we pick up a book, we know we’re going to be told a story. We trust the author or, in the case of first-person POV the narrator, to tell us the truth. We might be reading about vengeful ghosts or glorious dragons that take our imagination to the very limits of creativity, but we know that the author is giving us a fair description of what is going on.

Yet some writers break that covenant with the reader. They twist their words and their descriptions, running rings around their audience until the reader can’t tell what’s truth or fiction in the world she’s reading about. It can make for an exhilarating read as tropes are challenged and assumptions are turned on their heads.

NIn this episode, we are joined by Camilla Bruce (all the way from Norway!) whose new novel, You Let Me In, challenges the reader to separate the fictional truth from fictional fiction in the life of her protagonist. As such, we felt she would be the perfect guest to join us in a discussion of the interplay between narration and characterisation.

Read Charlotte’s review of You Let Me In over on Ginger Nuts of Horror.

Texts and authors mentioned in this episode include:

  • Buffy the Vampire Slayer
  • Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien
  • The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien
  • Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe
  • The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker
  • Bram Stoker’s Dracula
  • Bag of Bones by Stephen King
  • The Shining by Stephen King
  • Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton
  • Mills and Boon
  • Mirrormask
  • Peter Pan
  • 2001: A Space Odyssey
  • Lost
  • Monty Python: Life of Brian, Holy Grail, And Now for Something Completely Different
  • Hex by Thomas Olde Heuvelt
  • Red Dwarf
  • Battlestar Galactica
  • Firefly
  • Chilling Effect by Valerie Valdes
  • Douglas Adams

Camilla Bruce was born in Central Norway and grew up in an old forest, next to an Iron Age burial mound. She holds a master’s degree in comparative literature, and has co-run a small press that published dark fairy tales. Camilla currently lives in Trondheim with her son and cat. You Let Me In is her debut novel.