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Archive for April, 2009

Great Ghost Stories

Posted by demonik on April 22, 2009

R. Chetwynd-Hayes and Stephen Jones (eds.) – Great Ghost Stories (Cemetery Dance, Carroll & Graf, 2004)

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Les Edwards

Foreword – Stephen Jones
Introduction – R. Chetwynd-Hayes

Amelia B. Edwards – The Four-Fifteen Express
Richard Middleton – On the Brighton Road
Ambrose Bierce – The Moonlit Road
G. B. S.- The Whittaker’s Ghost
S. Baring-Gould – The Leaden Ring
Sir Walter Scott – The Tapestried Chamber
Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu – Ghost Stories Of The Tiled House
F. Marion Crawford – The Dead Smile
Daniel Defoe – The Ghost of Dorothy Dingley
Anon – The Dead Man Of Varley Grange
E. Nesbit – John Charrington’s Wedding
Sydney J. Bounds – The Night Walkers
Amyas Northcote – Brickett Bottom
John Kendrick Bangs – The Water Ghost of Harrowby Hall
Stephen King – The Reaper’s Image
Jerome K. Jerome – Christmas Eve in the Blue Chamber
Steve Rasnic Tem – Housewarming
Ramsey Campbell – The Ferries
Tina Rath – The Fetch
Washington Irving – Guests From Gibbet Island
Garry Kilworth – The Tryst
Guy de Maupassant – An Apparition
Brian Lumley – Aunt Hester
Tony Richards – Our Lady Of The Shadows
R. Chetwynd-Hayes – She Walks on Dry Land

Can anyone see the sense in this? Take a series of everyman pocket paperbacks like The Fontana Book Of Great Ghost Stories, which, in their day were available in just about every newsagent and supermarket up and down the country, and like as not got several people on here reading the stuff. Make a random selection from volumes 17-20. Get Les Edwards to design you a terrific cover, fully in sympathy with the original series. Now, have the thing printed, making sure it’s as unnecessarily bulky as possible, and run off just enough copies so that it sells out prior to publication. Appealing to the “I’ve still got my factory sealed, never been opened, worth a bomb!” non-reading market is all very well, but it’s also driving another stake into the heart of what’s supposed to be ‘popular fiction’. Hope they won an award for it.

Anyway, here’s the Blurb:

Eerie atmospherics, a sense of foreboding, then the unease, a chill, a shudder, ghosts, terror — again and again, in the twenty-five superbly scary tales of this standout anthology, they’re conjured artfully, both by modern masters of the macabre, among them Stephen King, Garry Kilworth, Brian Lumley, Ramsey Campbell, and Tony Richards, and by literary greats like Ambrose Bierce, Washington Irving, Sir Water Scott, and J Sheridan Le Fanu. Culled from the renowned Fontana Book of Great Ghost Stories series, which was edited from 1972 to 1984 by horror fiction writer and erudite anthologist R Chetwynd-Hayes, these highly original, and often long-obscure tales reflect the enduring fascination in our literary tradition with phantoms, specters, ghouls, and wraiths. There’s a fetch (i.e., doppelganger) too — in Tina Rath’s nasty take on a violent husband, his shrinking wife, and a scheming woman. And behind Guy de Maupassant’s simply titled “An Apparition” lurks a tale that Chetwynd-Hayes places among the top ten most terrifying ghost stories ever written. From Daniel Defoe’s engaging period piece, “The Ghost of Dorothy Dingley,” set in 1665, to the subtle slice of contemporary ghostly life in Stephen King’s “The Reaper’s Image,” dread takes many fearsome guises in the three centuries of chilling fiction collected here, and solace lies only at the feet of a very dark angel.

Posted in R. Chetwynd-Hayes, Stephen Jones | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Gregory Pendennis – Piranhas in Petticoats

Posted by demonik on April 22, 2009

Gregory Pendennis – Piranhas in Petticoats (Elmslie & Co., 1913, 1934: Spear, 1975, 1980) )

THE MENACE WITHIN

“I mean, confound it all, you insolent baggage! Your country’s about to wage war on the Hun!”

On the surface, Rosie Prenderghast-Smythe seemed no different to any other correct young English debutante. Beautiful. Wealthy. Devoted to Daddy and ‘Mumsy’. Fiercely proud of the Great British way of life.

Why then, had top brass been seen fit to haul in the Duke de Risqué to explain his dearest grand-daughter’s recent muddle-headed outbursts at perceived “injustices”. Outbursts which may yet see her gaoled as a threat to national security?

The answer was more terrible than de Risqué dared fear. His dearest grand-daughter had fallen prey to an even deadlier enemy than Kaiser Bill, Satan and all their hordes combined. The young fool had been duped into joining the Suffragette movement.

Heavily disguised, securing employment far below his station, de Risqué learns from his ‘fellow’ gossiping pantry maids that, brainwashed by her Soviet pay-mistresses, Rosie is recruiting an all-women’s football team to challenge his Majesty’s first XI for the Football Association Challenge Cup at the Crystal Palace!

Can the Duke knock some sense into Miss Prenderghast-Smythe’s dizzy little head before she can bring the Empire to its knees?

Spear 1980 edition

Spear 1980 edition

*covers shown are the ’34 Elmslie and the 2nd Spear edition. If anyone has the originals, please scan ‘em up!*

With apologies to Franklin Marsh (and the entire human race)

Posted in Gregory Pendennis | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

David Stuart Davies – The Casebook Of Sexton Blake

Posted by demonik on April 21, 2009

David Stuart Davies (ed.) – The Casebook Of Sexton Blake (Wordsworth Editions, 2009)

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Eric Parker, from the cover of the Sexton Blake Annual, 1940 edition

Mark Hodder – Introduction

Cecil Hayter – The Slave Market (1907) In the dangerous depths of Africa, Blake races to the rescue of an old school friend!
W. J. Lomax – A Football Mystery (1907) Blake and Tinker join the England team to beat the cheating opposition!
Ernest Sempill – The Man From Scotland Yard (1908) Blake has his first encounter with the greatest super-villain he would ever meet!
William Murray Gordon – The Law of the Sea (1912) Blake goes down with the ship in his own version of the sinking of the Titanic!
G. H. Teed – The Brotherhood of the Yellow Beetle (1913) – Blake grapples with oriental cunning in the form of Prince Wu Ling!
Robert Murray Graydon – A Case of Arson (1917) – A master crook is at work but Blake is on his trail!
G. H. Teed – The Black Eagle (1913) A wronged man is out for, vengeance, Can Blake stop him before it’s too late?

From the blurb
Welcome to the breathtaking adventures of Sexton Blake!

For the greater part of the 20th century, the countless escapades of super sleuth Sexton Blake kept millions of readers on the edge of their seats. Together with his faithful sidekick, the youthful Tinker, and his intelligent bloodhound, Pedro, he stood firm against an onslaught of crime and villainy, defeating his enemies with his extraordinary powers of deduction, iron fists and unyielding determination. This thrilling collection presents seven exploits from his ‘golden age':

Another superb offering from Wordsworth editions. See the Casebook of Sexton Blake thread on Vault of Evil


Posted in *Wordsworth", David Stuart Davis | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Michael Cox – Twelve Tales of the Supernatural

Posted by demonik on April 12, 2009

Michael Cox – Twelve Tales of the Supernatural (Oxford University Press, 1997)

Introduction

J. S. Le Fanu – Wicked Captain Walshawe, of Wauling
Mrs. J. H. Riddell – A Terrible Vengeance
M. R. James – Number 13
Perceval Landon – Railhead
W. W. Jacobs – The Toll-House E. F. Benson – The Face
W. F. Harvey – The Tool
H. Russell Wakefield – “Look Up There”
Marjorie Bowen – The Last Bouquet
Sir Andrew Caldecott – In Due Course
A. N. L. Munby – A Christmas Game
Shamus Frazer – Florinda

Thanks to jonathan122 at Vault for providing the contents for this one!

Posted in *Oxford*, Michael Cox | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

John Keir Cross – Best Horror Stories 2

Posted by demonik on April 12, 2009

John Keir Cross – Best Horror Stories 2 (Faber and Faber, n.d.)

Introduction
Theodore Sturgeon – The Professor’s Teddy-Bear
Alec Waugh – The Last Chukka
Ambrose Bierce – The Boarded Window
Brian W. Aldiss – The Flowers of the Forest
H. P. Lovecraft – The Thing on the Doorstep
Spike Milligan – How to Make a Foon
Angus Stewart – Brown God in the Beginning
Christianna Brand – Akin to Love
John Keir Cross – The Glass Eye
M. R. James – The Treasure of Abbot Thomas
John Collier – Evening Primrose
Alan Griff – The House of Desolation
Derek Ingrey – Making Sure of a Little One
William Hope Hodgson – The Derelict
Perceval Landon – Thurnley Abbey

Thanks to jonathan122 at Vault for providing the contents!

Posted in *Faber*, John Keir Cross | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Mark Samuels – Glyphotech

Posted by demonik on April 11, 2009

Mark Samuels – Glyphotech (PS Showcase #4: September 2008) £10.00 [$15.00]


[image]

Cover Artist: Jason Van Hollander

Ramsey Campbell – Introduction

Glyphotech
Sentinels
Patient 704
Shallaballah
Ghorla
Cesare Thodol: Some Lines Written on a Wall
The Cannibal Kings of Horror
Destination Nihil by Edmund Bertrand
The Vanishing Point
Regina vs. Zoskia
A Gentleman from Mexico

Blurb:

The fourth in our series of PS Showcase mini-collections of short stories from some of genre fiction’s best up-and-coming writers.

In the introduction to this collection Ramsey Campbell states that the two modern masters of urban weirdness are Thomas Ligotti and Mark Samuels. Inside this book you will find weird things indeed, not least the likes of:

The fungus-riddled mannequin in the lunatic asylum
The reconstruction company that works with life and death
The legal nightmare where the sane are guilty
A horror writing convention taken over by black magic cannibals
The Punch and Judy show broadcast live after death
The strange fate of the reincarnation of H.P. Lovecraft

Black Book of Horror, Best New Horror‘s 17, 18 and 19, Summer Chills and now a bootleg Word document – it’s like i’ve been collecting Glyphotech in installments. Anyway, yesterdays unforgettable encounter with the beyond cantankerous horror legend Edmund Bertrand in The Cannibal Kings Of Horror has reminded me that i’ve been meaning to splash out on Glyphotech ever since I read the ghoulish Death Lines for the noughties, Sentinels, way back in the previous Best New Horror, so some other poor sod will be due more Postal Order fun and games shortly! Delighted to see that the collection reprints an original from the admirably sociopath Mr. Bertrand and am looking forward to a return match with Regina vs. Zoskia from Charles’ first Black Book as the final, terrible revelation made a deeply unpleasant impression at the time.

As with previous PS Showcase editions, the print run is limited to 300 copies: order direct from P.S. Publishing.

Mr. Samuels reads an extract from his Lovecraft lives! chiller, A Gentleman From Mexico, HERE

Posted in *P.S.* | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Peter Underwood – Thirteen Famous Ghost Stories

Posted by demonik on April 11, 2009

Peter Underwood (ed.) – Thirteen Famous Ghost Stories (J. M. Dent Everyman’s Library, 1977)


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Ambrose Bierce – The Damned Thing
A. J. Alan – The Dream
E. F. Benson – Caterpillars
Algernon Blackwood – Secret Worship
Charles Dickens – The Signalman
W. W. Jacobs – The Monkey’s Paw
M. R. James – Martin’s Close
Rudyard Kipling – They
Lord Lytton – The Haunted and the Haunters
Arthur Machen – Change
E. Nesbit – John Charrington’s Wedding
Vincent O’Sullivan – When I Was Dead
Edith Wharton – Afterward

Posted in *Dent* | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Richard Dalby – The Virago Book of Ghost Stories 2

Posted by demonik on April 11, 2009

Richard Dalby – The Virago Book of Ghost Stories: The Twentieth Century: Volume 2 (Virago, 1991)

Richard Dalby – Preface
Sara Maitland – Introduction

A. S. Byatt – The July Ghost
Mary Butts – With and Without Buttons
Celia Fremlin – Don’t Tell Cissie
Margaret Irwin – The Book
Rebecca West – The Grey Men
Daphne du Maurier – The Pool
Ann Bridge – The Station Road
Penelope Lively – Black Dog
E. Nesbit – No. 17
Pamela Sewell – Prelude
D. K. Broster – The Pestering
Jean Rhys – I Used to Live Here Once
Clotilde Graves – A Spirit Elopement
Eleanor Smith – Whittington’s Cat
Ruth Rendell – The Haunting of Shawley Rectory
Margery Lawrence – Mare Amore
Antonia Fraser – Who’s Been Sitting in My Car?
Elizabeth Fancett – The Ghosts of Calagou
Edith Wharton – Afterward
Mary Williams – The Thingummajig
Mary Elizabeth Counselman – The House of Shadows
Richmal Crompton – Rosalind
Dorothy K. Haynes – Redundant
A. L. Barker – The Dream of Fair Women
Rosemary Pardoe – The Chauffeur
Joan Aiken – The Traitor
Elinor Mordaunt – The Landlady

Thanks to paisleycravat of Vault for posting the contents!

Posted in *Virago*, Richard Dalby | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Richard Dalby – Virago Book Of Ghost Stories 2006

Posted by demonik on April 11, 2009

Richard Dalby (ed.) – The Virago Book Of Ghost Stories (Virago, 2006)


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Cover illustration: Tina Mansuwan at CIA

Inside cover blurb:
Bringing together vintage tales from the outstandingly successful Virago anthologies The Virago Book of Ghost Storied (Volumes I and II) and Victorian Ghost Stories, comes this chilling new omnibus.
Lost loves, past enmities and unwanted memories mingle with the inexplicable as unquiet souls return to repay kindnesses, settle scores and haunt the imagination.
Featuring some of the finest writers of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, these stories gather to haunt and horrify — an irresistible read for those with a taste for being spooked.

Preface – Richard Dalby

Charlotte Bronte – Napoleon And The Spectre
Elizabeth Gaskell – The Old Nurse’s Story
Amelia B. Edwards – The Story Of Salome
Mrs Henry Wood – Reality Or Delusion?
Charlotte Riddell – The Old House In Vauxhall Walk
Margaret Oliphant – The Open Door
Ella D’Arcy – The Villa Lucienne
Mary E. Wilkins (Freeman) – The Vacant Lot
E. Nesbit – The Violet Car
Edith Wharton -The Eyes
May Sinclair – The Token
Richmal Crompton – Rosalind
Margery H. Lawrence – The Haunted Saucepan
Margaret Irwin – The Book
F. M. Mayor – Miss De Mannering Of Asham
Ann Bridge – The Station Road
Stella Gibbons – Roaring Tower
Elizabeth Bowen – The Happy Autumn Fields
Rosemary Timperley – The Mistress in Black
Celia Fremlin – Don’t Tell Cissie
Antonia Fraser – Who’s Been Sitting In My Car
Ruth Rendell – The Haunting Of Shawley Rectory
A. S. Byatt – The July Ghost
A. L. Barker – The Dream Of Fair Women
Penelope Lively – Black Dog
Rosemary Pardoe – The Chauffeur
Lisa St. Aubin De Teran – Diamond Jim
Angela Carter – Ashputtle
Elizabeth Fancett – The Ghost Of Calagou
Joan Aikin – The Traitor
Dorothy K. Haynes – Redundant

Notes on the authors

Posted in Richard Dalby | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

John Llewellyn Probert – The Faculty Of Terror

Posted by demonik on April 11, 2009

John Llewellyn Probert – The Faculty Of Terror (Gray Friar, 2006)

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Zach McCain

Paul Finch – Introduction
Foreword: An Author’s Warning To The Curious

Prologue
Overtime
Faculty Interlude No. 1
Asphyx In Glass
Faculty Interlude No. 2
A Family Affair
Faculty Interlude No. 3
Set In Stone
Faculty Interlude No. 4
The States Of The Art
Faculty Interlude No. 5
The Kreutzenberg Sonata
Finale

Extras:
About The Author
Interview With The Author: conducted by Gary McMahon
Story Notes

Blurb:
Take a Diploma in Fear….

Four secretaries working a late shift in a deserted office block….
A young man who sees the ghost of his dead father in wet glass….
The British underworld boss who will do anything to restore his tortured wife’s good looks…
The old cottage in the Wye Valley whose walls are soaked with blood…
An art gallery where patrons become part of the paintings….
A shop where you can buy anything your heart desires, but at a terrible price….

When music graduate Paul Dearden accepts an invitation to dinner at his old university the last thing he expects is an evening of the macabre. Over the finest food and drink he learns that the institution has a history steeped in blood. Paul cannot believe that the tales he is told by his dining companions are true, even though none of them are as cruel or as terrifying as the story he needs to tell.

In the tradition of classic British anthology horror films like The House that Dripped Blood, AsylumFrom Beyond the Grave, John Llewellyn Probert’s The Faculty of Terror offers six tales of terror linked by a framework story, the climax of which will earn all who survive it a first class degree in spine tingling horror! and

“It’s time for terror”!

The Faculty Of Terror attracted keen attention on Vault Mk I, but me being such a slowcoach, I only just snapped it up along with The Catacombs Of Fear as part of the Right Hon. John Probert funpack from Gray Friars Press. These are the first Gray Friars books i’ve seen and I have to say, they’re a very attractive proposition. The covers, by Zach McCain and Gary Fry respectively, strike exactly the right note – put me in mind of the montage on the back of Jack Oleck’s Tales From The Crypt novelisation.

see also the Faculty Of Terror thread on the Vault Forum

Posted in *Gray Friar Press*, John Llewellyn Probert | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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