Gleam review

The Horror Hothouse

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Tom Fletcher’s The Ravenglass Eye was one of the Hothouse’s favourite literary chillers of 2013. Fletcher’s latest Gleam is quite a departure from the horrid happenings in the northern village of Ravenglass.

Gleam is the first part of the Factory Trilogy. Set in a future Earth, Gleam is a huge factory Pyramid. The workers have no idea what their purpose is in Gleam. Days are spent in mindless labour and regular bleedings are carried out as par of Gleam’s religious observances. Keeping order are the Arbitrators, a bunch of armoured paramilitary thugs.

Outside is the Discard, a harsh lawless environment of grown over industrial sites, where biker gangs, thieves, and mushroom abusing drunks hang out in the sprawling bars and brothels. A place where dog or cat is a delicacy, but most residents subsist on a diet of toad, snake and snail, and seek oblivion with cheap whisky.

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