Awards British Fantasy Society Best Novel World Fantasy Best Novel (nominee)
T.E.D. Klein entered the world of horror fiction with a great big splash when The Ceremonies was published in 1984. The novel was met with much critical success, being nominated for a 1985 World Fantasy Award and winning the British Fantasy Society award for best novel. Stephen King proclaimed it the most exciting horror novel since Peter Straub's Ghost Story.
Jeremy Freirs is a graduate student and teacher who decides to spend his summer working on his dissertation and preparing for the class he will be teaching in the fall on Gothic Literature; he thinks he has found the perfect place in Gilead, New Jersey, is a world all to its own, the home of a strict religious sect with extremely puritan ideas. Moving into a former storage building on the farm of Sarr and Deborah Poroth, he expects to spend a productive summer free from essentially all distractions - he is quite wrong in this assumption.
Meanwhile, in New York, the rather reserved Carol Conklin goes about trying to survive in the big city on a small income from her job at a library. She meets Jeremy in New York just before he leaves for the summer, and a connection is made which will find the couple developing a romantic relationship on somewhat strange terms. What Jeremy and Carol do not know is that this relationship is the work of a strange, little old man known as Mr. Rosebottom. Rosie is actually the Old One working to bring his master back after a very long absence, and Jeremy and Carol are the unsuspecting keys to his success