Join us on a literary world trip!
Add this book to bookshelf
Grey
Write a new comment Default profile 50px
Grey
Subscribe to read the full book or read the first pages for free!
All characters reduced
The Host in the Attic - cover

The Host in the Attic

Rohan Quine

Publisher: EC1 Digital

  • 0
  • 0
  • 0

Summary

The Host in the Attic by Rohan Quine is a hologram of Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray, digitised and reframed in cinematic style, set in London’s Docklands in a few years’ time. High-flyer Jaymi discovers a secret novel online called The Imagination Thief, written by a woman named Alaia; and they meet and fall in love. In his attic he hides the prototype of a new worldwide Web-browsing hologram, for whose appearance he was the model. While this hologram deteriorates into ever more terrifying corruption, Jaymi’s appearance remains forever sweet and youthful, despite his escalating evil … until the inevitable reckoning unfolds. A Distinguished Favorite in the NYC Big Book Award 2021.

Brilliant software engineer Rik and executive Jaymi work at digital agencies in London (surely unaware that their fates are destined to echo those of Basil and Dorian, respectively the painter and the subject of The Picture of Dorian Gray). Rik uses Jaymi’s appearance as the model or “skin” for a cutting-edge interactive hologram that navigates the Web in enhanced ways, tailored to every user. The dissolute bigwig “Champagne” Marc makes this into a business reality, and through his cynical eloquence electrifies Jaymi with the knowledge that Jaymi will hereby become the face of the Web. Throughout the film-shoot of Jaymi for the making of the skin, these honeyed words of Marc (like those of Wilde’s Lord Henry to Dorian during the portrait’s creation) light powerful fires of vanity and hubris behind Jaymi’s eyes.

As this holographic Web-guide’s hold over global information grows to a near monopoly, Jaymi is lionised, finding no door closed. But he yearns for still more: to see what the hologram itself can see online. So by trickery he succeeds in getting hold of a unique copy of the prototype hologram, with all regular filters removed.

In private files online he thereby discovers a not-yet-published novel that will come to be called The Imagination Thief, by Alaia Danielle, with whom he has an intense romance (echoing Wilde’s actress Sibyl Vane with Dorian). But when Jaymi brutally dumps her, triggering her suicide, he is shocked to observe, on the same evening, that the face on his private prototype hologram has become crueller. Fascinated, he realises its appearance is changing in accordance with his own behaviour – and he hides it in his attic.

For years he uses his unique online access for ever more megalomaniacal ends, ruining the lives of many whom he lures down into excess, addiction and suicide. While the hologram in the attic deteriorates into quite terrifying corruption, Jaymi’s appearance remains as sweet and youthful as the day he was filmed … until the inevitable reckoning unfolds.


Keywords: literary fiction, magical realism, dark fantasy, horror, Dorian Gray, hologram, London, Docklands, attic, The Imagination Thief, corridor, Ontario Tower, imagination, contemporary

Other books that might interest you

  • Scars - An Unforgettable Psychological Thriller - cover

    Scars - An Unforgettable...

    Dan Scottow

    • 0
    • 4
    • 0
    The wounds you can’t see take the longest to heal in this modern gothic thriller from the bestselling author of Girl A and Damaged.   In an isolated cottage on the banks of a Scottish loch, a reclusive couple take on a new live-in carer.   As Lucy gets to know her employers, she realizes the house and the people in it aren’t what they seem. Is the house haunted or is something far more sinister living within the walls?   As secrets and lies begin to unravel, Lucy starts to question what is real. But one thing seems certain, if scars cannot heal, people will never forgive . . .  Praise for Girl A “A psychological thriller with a chill factor off the charts! . . . a real nail-biter.” —The Eclectic Review  “Girl A has everything I look for in a book: dark psychological thriller, great storyline, and an unpredictable plot. I’m not exaggerating when I say I couldn’t put it down. This book is so well-written, with a plot that unravels bit by bit, just at the right times.” —Joyful Antidotes   “The story flicks from present to past as it unfolds slowly and almost stalker-like . . . compelling, gritty, dark and twisted.” —Sharon Beyond the Books   “Superbly written . . . Reading Girl A was like being on a scary and unpredictable rollercoaster ride with several shocks and surprises along the way.” —gingerbookgeek   “Fantastic! . . . what brilliant writing . . . A book full of suspense, thrills and drama.” —The Comfy Chair Book Reviews
    Show book
  • Submerged - cover

    Submerged

    Thomas F. Monteleone

    • 1
    • 3
    • 0
    “An epic thriller about a secret Nazi submarine and its mission . . . a tasty combination of Ken Follett and Clive Cussler” from the award-winning author (The Novel Pursuit).   Cruising from the sub pens of Trondheim under the cover of darkness—undetected by the sonar scans of Allied enemies—Kapitaenleutnant Erich Heinz Bruckner leads the experimental submarine U-5001 in a last-ditch effort for Nazi victory. But their sinister 1945 voyage ends mysteriously: Bruckner and his crew vanish, along with their classified weapon of mass destruction.   Seventy years later, ex-Navy diver Dexter Bucklin stumbles upon an unknown vessel in the depths of the Chesapeake Bay and is consumed with the need to discover its original, terrifying mission—inadvertently alerting a worldwide cabal that knows all about the U-5001 . . . and the keys it holds to even greater secrets.   A thriller in the tradition of Ken Follett and Robert Ludlum, Submerged follows both Bruckner and Bucklin in a narrative that spans generations of adventure and horror—Lovecraftian tales at their most strange. As these men’s lives converge, a third element surfaces, influencing the Kapitaenleutnant and the ex-Navy diver to make increasingly desperate decisions, ones that will shape the future of civilization.   Thomas F. Monteleone expertly blends history, fact, and fiction with a subtle dose of the supernatural in this Lovecraftian page-turner.  Praise for Thomas F. Monteleone   “Monteleone has a dark imagination, a wicked pen, and the rare ability to convey an evil chill with words.” —Dean Koontz, New York Times–bestselling author   “Tom’s an expert storyteller.” —F. Paul Wilson, author of The Keep and Deep as the Marrow   “A vastly entertaining novel of horror and suspense [that poses] difficult questions about the nature of man, God and the devil.” —Los Angeles Daily News
    Show book
  • Broken - A Heart Stopping Psychological Thriller with a Killer Twist - cover

    Broken - A Heart Stopping...

    Betsy Reavley

    • 0
    • 2
    • 0
    A hauntingly horrific tale of a troubled young woman who escapes—into a nightmare . . . 
     
    Not everyone can be saved . . . 
     
    Annabel, a troubled young woman trying to put her life back together, decides to take a trip to England’s coast to clear her head and get away from her mother. But when she arrives in the little seaside town, she discovers a series of grisly murders have taken place and police are searching for a twisted killer. After a fateful meeting with a mysterious stranger, Jude, the course of her life changes, and soon she finds peace in a world away from the misery she has known. But when Jude comes under suspicion from the police, and her idyllic world is threatened, Annabel’s happy existence starts to become a nightmare. Can Annabel escape her painful past or is her fate sealed? And why is she haunted by horrific visions when she seems on the verge of finding happiness? 
     
    This astonishing novel will take you on a shattering journey through Annabel’s fight for survival and will ask if the greatest threat we pose is to ourselves. 
     
    This is a revised edition of a book previously published as Beneath The Watery Moon. 
     
    Suitable for readers over 18 only. This book contains graphic scenes and of acts of violence which some readers may find disturbing.
    Show book