October 3rd, 2007


Pob hwyl,* Susan Cooper

Like many people, I have been gnashing teeth and rending garments over the desecration of The Dark Is Rising that will shortly be infesting movie theaters under the title The Seeker: The Dark Is Rising. (Go here to learn why we are so cheesed off.) But whenever I’m in danger of giving myself an aneurysm, I take a deep breath and recall Raymond Chandler’s response to the question, How do you feel about what Hollywood has done to your novels?: “Why, Hollywood hasn’t done anything to them. They’re still right there, on the shelf.”

Furthermore, even this towering thunderhead of dreck has a silver lining: perhaps someone, intrigued by the film or by the tsunami of outrage from the fans, will pick up Susan Cooper’s books; which means, if they read all five volumes of the series, that they will finally come to these words from Silver on the Tree:
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I have to make a mildly embarrassing confession: that’s what happened to me. In grade school I read the first four books (out of order—The Dark Is Rising, which is the second volume; then the first, Over Sea, Under Stone; the third, Greenwitch; and The Grey King) but not the fifth. I can only assume that my elementary school didn’t have Silver on the Tree, and then I forgot that I hadn’t read it until I borrowed the entire series from the New York public library. So although I am very, very disappointed in everyone involved with The Seeker (and yes, that includes you, Christopher Eccleston; this might cost you all the geek cred you earned from Heroes and Doctor Who), I suppose I owe them a debt.

Still not gonna buy a ticket or the DVD, though.

* Welsh for good luck.