"Jack the Ripper is psychogeographic in love." - Guy Debord
David Seabrook, after the publication of his novel 'All the devils are here' (2002), was called a 'seaside situationist' by one reviewer. But calling him a 'seaside Sinclair' makes much more sense because the spirit of Iain Sinclair is all over Seabrook's obsessive account of the dark history of Kent's seaside towns. There must be a relation between the two because Seabrook thanks Sinclair in the book and Sinclair reviewed the book for the LRB. Most of Sinclair's piece is behind the paywall but in the bit that is available he gives a few clues about Seabrook that are not in the book, for instance that Seabrook was inspired by the bioregionalism of Carl Sauer. I find this a fascinating nudge towards interpreting the book. Seabrook is not a clone of Sinclair though, his writing is less lyrical, less autobiographical, more experimental and more obsessive in the way it creates meaning through association. This book is a collage and the way the fragments are glued together show a jawdropping technical skill. This is dark nostalgia at its best and I look forward to rereading it on the long winter evenings to come. What is intriguing is that Seabrook was a 'true crime writer' and I am unable to say if this true crime writing at its most creative or if this is creative writing that points towards the inability of that genre to come near the real truth behind lust, murder and perversion.
Also: Stewart Home announcing the death of Seabrook wrote that nobody liked him.