Skip to content
Literature & Fiction - Mythology & Folk Tales Mystery & Thrillers - Thrillers New Titles

$17.95 Regular price
Unit price

Spiderweb Alley: Book One of The Elverie Road

ISBN: 9781732579965
Binding: Paperback
Author: Verlyn Flieger
Pages: 374
Trim: 5 x 7 inches
Published: 06/25/2024

In this psychological thriller that touches upon the dark, fantastic realm of Celtic myth, two young lovers find their lives, and their love, torn apart by the power of fairy tales. Mick, a young professor with expertise in folklore, wants to make a name for himself in the academic world, so when he learns of a remote seacoast community in the British Isles which maintains an ancient tradition of storytelling, he brings his new girlfriend, Kath, on a working vacation to visit the isolated village. While listening to Lame Elly, the matriarchal storyteller in the community, Kath is gripped by visions that she and Mick are participants in the story, and later these visions grow in intensity, become nightmarish, and affect Kath so much that she collapses and needs to be hospitalized. When Mick, for whom stories are just stories, starts to question Kath's sanity, he precipitates a crisis in their relationship, which deepens when Kath insists that her experiences are real and not just hallucinations. Also, the more Kath and Mick are drawn into the community, the more the reader realizes that some of the local people may be more than just the country villagers that they appear: some characters may in fact be visitors from "Elverie," a local term for Fairyland or Elfland, or the Land of the Dead.


Verlyn Flieger is Professor Emerita in the Department of English at the University of Maryland, where for 36 years she taught courses in J. R. R. Tolkien, medieval literature, and comparative mythology. She is the author of five critical books on the works of J. R. R. Tolkien— Splintered Light: Logos and Language in Tolkien's World; A Question of Time: J. R. R. Tolkien's Road to Faërie (winner of the 1998 Mythopoeic Scholarship Award in Inklings Studies); Interrupted Music: the Making of Tolkien's Mythology; Green Suns and Faerie: Essays on J. R. R. Tolkien; and There Would Always Be a Fairy Tale: More Essays on Tolkien (winner of the 2019 Mythopoeic Scholarship Award in Inklings Studies). Her fiction includes A Waiter Made of Glass: Poems and Stories, and a modern reimagining of the King Arthur legend in Arthurian Voices. Her most recent book, Spiderweb Alley, is the first volume in a series of connected novels called The Elverie Road.


"This beguiling story, inspired by fairy tales and some of the darker aspects of Celtic myth, is charming and terrifying by turns. A masterful work by a writer long-steeped in the traditions of folklore and fairy tales." - Alan Shapiro