book review: beast

Paul Kingsnorth’s Beast is about a man who goes out on the moor to be alone. A storm hits and he becomes more alone than he anticipated. Though there’s some fixing of broken ribs and fashioning a splint, the challenges in this story are far more internal. Time passes strangely in a mostly uninhabited world. Uninhabited except for the beast, which proves elusive.

This is the kind of novel that pulled me along, not by plot but by language. And then it kept me thinking with vaguely delirious yet important digressions.

It doesn’t use made-up language like Kingsnorth’s previous novel, The Wake and generally feels like a haunted house story, or maybe The Prisoner with a less well-hinged protagonist.