Titus Awakes: The Lost Book of Gormenghast

Michael Wood writes:

The pathos in the Gormenghast novels, and in Maeve Gilmore’s continuation, is that there is nowhere else to go. If Titus leaves at the end of the second book, he returns at the end of the third. It’s true that he comes back only to confirm that he has ‘no longer any need for home, for he carried his Gormenghast within him’, and Gilmore picks up this thought by having her hero – after various rather desultory adventures with army deserters, an affair with a woman painter and a stint as an orderly in a mental hospital, where he meets and is captivated by a patient who much resembles Mervyn Peake – return at the end of TitusAwakesto the words his mother used when he first left Gormenghast: ‘There’s not a road, not a track, but it will lead you home.’

(LRB 26 January 2012)

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