The Walls of the Castle by Tom Piccirilli
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
A man named Kasteel lives in the Castle, the hospital where his son died, so wracked with grief that he cannot leave...
So I got this as a reward for contributing to a Black Labyrinth Kickstarter to finance a new Joe Lansdale book. I'd heard of Tom Piccirilli before but never read him.
This was a pretty good little novella. Kasteel is a criminal who secretly lives in the hospital where his son died, acting as a guardian angel to the patients rather than letting go of his grief and going home to his wife.
The Walls of the Castle is a psychological atmospheric novel that is mainly about dealing with grief and loss. In Kasteel's case, he deals with it with violence, intimidation, and hiding from the world. Once he's convinced Abbadon, the Angel of Death, is also lurking in the hospital, the story gets even more intense.
The story read like a dark, violent Twilight Zone episode. I think it would look great filmed in black and white.
I had to dock a star because the ending felt really abrupt. I hope Kasteel remembers his name and leaves the hospital one day. Four out of five stars.
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