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Literature / The Wreck of the Lodewijk

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Do NOT look behind you.
The Wreck of the Lodewijk and Other Ghostly Stories is a slim volume of thoroughly British ghost stories by George Knight, and including the titular tale in which SS Lodewijk sank – not as quietly as appears – in a storm in 1914, off East Anglia.The other three stories are set in a country church and its undercroft or crypt; on an isle in the Hebrides; and in the Underground.

Tropes especially notable in these stories include:

  • Afterlife Express: Possibly.
  • Arcadia / Barsetshire: In the old sense of Death's being also in Arcadia. Three of the protagonists are – or, rather, they meant to be and had thought they were – on nice, restful holidays, by the sea or in the countryside....
  • Big Boo's Haunt: And you never know what is until you are already there.
  • The Church of England: Crypts and all. The Vicar seems unaware that his parish church is Unholy Ground.
  • Cool Train: Well, a chilling one, actually. Possibly, er, South-bound.
  • Ghost Ship: Subverted. It sank … and the ship's not what you need to worry about.
  • Our Ghosts Are Different: With fathomless motives. There is no reason to stop and inquire about those motives, either, when you could be running away.
  • Gratuitous Latin: In addition to the Jamesian trope of Smart People Know Latin, the story, St Oswald's, includes a rather unnerving Latin inscription.
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  • Sinister Subway: One might very well think that....
  • Steam Never Dies: Disturbingly subverted on the Underground.
  • The Undead: Whatever that is in the crypt, it's Not Nice. Probably not an Eldritch Abomination, though....