A WRITER has set his new novel called The Return of the Black Magician in Ormskirk and surrounding villages.
Richard Raftery has described the work as, “a peculiar tale of a severely dystopian community – a curious mix of humour, politics and the macabre, and therefore highly apposite for the turbulent times in which we live.”
In the book a merciless and malevolent megalomaniac sets about establishing a self-governing quasi-medieval state in Ormskirk.
Inevitably, the consequences are dire. However, a team of inconsistent and frequently inept insurgents who plan his overthrow.
The West Lancashire area is “surreal and distorted” in the book.
Richard said: “The book is set in an area in which I grew up and therefore easier for me to write about as it is a familiar setting.
“You will search in vain for some of the buildings mentioned although the Stanley Arms, one of the more significant buildings in the book, is very much a thriving pub in Aughton – at least prior to lockdown.
“The story is set in an unspecified age but certainly one prior to the advent of mobile phones, computers and other modern methods of communication and surveillance. Probably the late 1970s is a reasonable approximation (with an unhealthy dollop of the 1670s for good measure). However, the themes explored would seem to be disturbingly perennial.”