Vault Of Evil

British Horror fiction

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Vault Of Evil


Encyclopedia Phantasmagoria

This section: British Horror Anthologies:

Aickman – Burke
Campbell – Gray
Hale – Karloff
Lamb – Parrish
Parry – Sutton
Telep – Wolfe

The Other Tentacles

The Fontana Chapter: Fontana Horror and Ghost publications from the early ‘sixties through to 1984 when the twentieth and final volume of The Fontana Book Of Ghost Stories saw print. The selection attempts to provide short plot synopsis’ of all the stories featured in the Ghost and Horror series’, the Tales Of Terror books, Mary Danby’s two volume Frighteners and more. A similar attempt is made on all four 65 Great juggernauts published by Octopus. Also includes a covers gallery.

NEW in 2009: Nasty Nels: Your daily NEL. Circumstances permitting, at least one New English Library or Four Square paperback from the ‘sixties and ‘seventies added every 24 hours from May 11 2009.

Morbid Mayflowers: Index to the Black magic-heavy horror anthologies, novels and non-fiction published by Mayflower (sometimes in conjunction with Dell) during the ‘sixties and seventies.

Pan Horrors: The famous Van Thal/ Paget Pan Book of Horror Stories and beyond. Not long after starting work on it, i learned of Tikit’s magnificent The First Twenty Five Years of PAN Paperback Books which made the entire project redundant, hence lack of updates!

Panther Horror: Based on the Panther Horror In Paperback listing compiled by Justin Marriott which first appeared in Paperback Dungeon #2, Summer 2007. It’s been slightly expanded for purposes of this blog, though not so you’d notice! Needless to say, there is a covers gallery.

Sordid Sphere’s: Based on Justin Marriott’s Sphere Horror In The 1970’s – The Checklist in Paperback Fanatic #1 (August 2007). Click on the book titles in bold for cover scans and/ or more information about a particular item. Also featured two image galleries covering Sphere publications of the ‘seventies and ‘eighties.

Terrible Tandems: from the early ‘sixties through to the mid-seventies Tandem published a small but significant number of horror and witchcraft titles and this is an attempt to catalogue them.


Terror Takeaways: began life as the film/tv novelisation arm of the Vault site but it’s been reworked and expanded upon for EP.

Gruesome Cargoes: a straight copy of the pointless site I had on batcave. This one concerns itself with Christine Campbell Thomson’s Not At Night and Charles Birkin’s Creeps series’ from between the world wars.

*** All of the above are intended to compliment the Vault Of Evil forum which you are strongly advised to consult for further comment on many of these titles. ***

demonik 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020.

52 Responses to “Vault Of Evil”

  1. Kevin McKercher said

    Help! Some years ago I read a great collection of short stories by an author who’s name I have forgotten. These were adventure\horror stories, from the twenties or thirties, dealing with ghouls and crypts and an underground world of purpetual night. The entrances to this world were in graveyards. Can you help me? You folks know what you’re talking about, unlike every American site I have contacted. Thanks for your sites and interest.

  2. demonik said

    Hi Kevin

    Sounds very much like you’re looking for a H. P. Lovecraft collection that includes The Rats In The Walls and Pickman’s Model. There have been several collections of his work and this is a decent modern(ish) edition, The Haunter Of The Dark (Grafton, 1985/ 1986). Love that Tim White cover!

  3. I’m very pleased to discover your site, which I found simultaneously wonderful and confusing, as it seems to be a sort of horror anthology search engine. I checked for myself there, but Serpent’s Tail (and my other publishers) haven’t listed any of my nine horror anthologies, which is a shame. I’m going to have a poke about in your recesses and see what I can find…keep up the great work!
    Christopher Fowler

  4. Kool site. I see from my google analytics that you have been checking out mywicked and sicksite. I’ve added “Vault” to my Wicked blogroll. Maybe you will return the favour. If you have some time check out my 666 very short stories site: some of the stuff there is quite devilish if not evil.

  5. troodler said

    I think I came to this all the wrong way around ;)

  6. Segav said

    I need help! I’m trying to find the title and author of a short story I read last year. It was about an invisible vampire who followed victims around, killed them, and then attached itself to whoever happened to be nearby to repeat the process. From what I recall, it ends with a doctor making a housecall to a dying man, and then being followed out by a set of footprints. I believe it was set in early 19th century London.

    Does this sound familiar to you?

  7. demonik said

    Hi Segav

    Sounds to me like this is John Wyndham’s Close Behind Him. You can find it in Mary Danby’s 6th Fontana Book of Horror Stories and 65 Great Spinechillers, Richard Dalby’s Vampire Stories, etc.

  8. Segav said

    That’s it! Thanks so much!

  9. Thomas said

    My wife has spent a better part of the last few years trying to find a book of ghost stories she read in the 5th grade or so (@1980). All she can remember is the cover, which was of a dinner/banquet scene in an Gorey/Addams style and wrapped around the hardcover. She also seems to recall an Irish story about Dooley? and a “little man” (pretty uncommon for Irish stories, I suppose). If you guys have ANY idea, please let me know. Thanks,

  10. Mick Sims said

    This is a great site.
    All my interest in supernatural fiction and film comes from my teenage years in the 60’s/70’s and the antholgies and collections mentioned here are all on my shelves and all much loved.
    Only today on a sunny day off from work I sat and read Robert Hichens, How Love Came To Professor Guildea – wonderful. I was reminded to read it again after seeing Ramsey’s Rant in the latest Prism.
    Can we get listed here?

  11. Khali said

    Hi there, I’ve been searching like mad for this old short story, can’t remember the collection name but I think it was a mid-90’s book. It was about this guy who was obsessed with doing things for the first time, but of course soon he would get bored and have to take it a step farther and so on. I think the last thing he said was “never do anything for the first time”. Any idea? this is driving me nuts heh.

  12. demonik said

    Thomas and Khali. Apologies for the delay. I’ve struggled with both your queries, posted ’em on the Vault forum and no help from there either :( Can you think of anything else that might help us identify these?

  13. Mike said

    If any of you could help me…. My twin brother received a fantastic horror anthology years ago that featured a cover that was a slightly creepier version of the painting american gothic. It would have been sometime in the 80’s. The introduction discussed the incident involving the word “Croatoan”. Can any of you help? I want to buy this book for my son.

    • demonik said

      Hi Mike

      sorry it’s taken a while but i think you’ll find the book you’re after is:

      Martin Greenberg, Charles G. Waugh & F.D.McSherry (ed’s) – A Treasury Of American Horror Stories (Bonanza, 1985: Random House, 1988)

  14. Tisha said

    Hi, i was just wondering if you know of any really good vampire stories,
    i’ve just been reading twilight and i find them intresting. but i’d like something with a bit more blood and guts XD
    Please reply.

  15. demonik said

    Hi Tisha, i’m not sure how to answer that. What are you after: short stories or novels? How violent do you want them, and what, exactly, is ‘Twilight’?

    Mike. I know that anthology by the painting you describe, but i can’t for the life of me remember the title. If and when i find it, will post it on here, OK?

  16. Lee McFarlane said

    A story I have been looking for you may be able to help me find as I think it was in one of these compilations, but I can’t remember the author or title. A student goes to see a wealthy uncle, whose estate he stands to inherit. The uncle is loathed locally as a bully, letting his wild dogs roam his grounds every night to catch intruders. One night the uncle comes back and has forgotten his keys. The butler, I think called Norton, has gone to bed because he is ill. The nephew pretends he can’t hear him and lets the dogs get him. As he mounts the stairs he catches a glimpse of himself in a mirror, thinking it is the ghost of the uncle, the twist being that he has sunk to the same level and doesn’t recognise himself. Google searches have yielded nothing!

  17. Rarignac said

    I am interested in checking out Peter Haining’s “Preface: ‘The Destruction of Castle Dracula!’ – Bram Stoker (an extract from the original manuscript of “Dracula”)” from Vampire Omnibus for an article. Can anyone help me find that text?

  18. Emo said

    I really think so too:P I have been browsing around the internet for some time this week, and its really hard to find anything entertaining to read on blogs:P Maybe its because there are too much of those around =) But your site actually keeps catching my attention=) Great stories, and kawai design ^__^. Ill be sure to give it more time now .

  19. rob smylie said

    Hi everyone,

    I am emigrating and have a fantastic collection of Stephen King 1st Editions (UK and USA) and lots of rare magazines, film and book memorabilia. I also have a very unusual autograph with original envelope from Stephen King

    I also have 3 copys of original Skeleton Crew as well as all of the A4 glossy mags prior to it folding

    I have many copies of Fear magazine as well.

    There are some amazing things for King/horror collectors. I am emigrating and wish to sell these items as they are boxed up and doing no good whatsoever in the attic.

    I am based in the North West of England

    Hope I am not breaking the forums rules, if so, sorry in advance


    Rob Smylie

  20. Lee Billingsley said

    Hi, in about the mid-80s I borrowed an anthology from my local library. It contained amongst others an American story about a sort of portal that opens in the desert depicting an idyllic scene of a house and family from a century before. The military are sent to observe, and one of its scientists becomes so transfixed that he walks into the scene, whereupon the family transmogrify into naked vampiric creatures that do to him what you’d expect naked vampiric creatures to do. I think I’ve done it a real disservice, making it sound schlocky and almost surreal in its crapness, but it certainly left an impression. I believe another story in the book takes place in complete darkness. Not much to go on I know, but if anyone can help I’de be grateful (not to say impressed!)

    • Terry Wells said

      Hi, Lee. That story’s called “Window”, it’s a favourite of mine, but I can’t recall who wrote it. I know i have it in an anthology back home but can’t recall which. It’s the first story in the compilation, I remember. It may be one of Stephen Jones’ “Mammoth Book of Best New Horror”

    • Terry Wells said

      Me again, Lee. I’ll be back tomorrow with full details. Am at work now, can’t you tell! I think the compilation where I have this story has a mainly blue cover depicting a creepy house by a river, and it’s reflection in the water is even creepier. I don’t recall a story set in darkness but only a handful of stories leave a lasting impression with me and “Window” surely did. It would make a great film even going beyond the ending.

    • Terry Wells said

      Lee, the story is indeed called “Window” and is written by Bob Leman, copyright 1980. The book is as I described it but is called “The Best Horror Stories from the Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction”, edited by Edward L. Ferman and Anne Jordan, 1988. There’s a story called “By the River, Fontainebleau”, which is mentioned by another person fielding your query. I only vaguely recall the story details, except that I found the ending puzzling. And there’s another story called “The Old Darkness”, the details of which I remember nothing. Hope you get this message after all these months. I only just found this site.

    • Frightful said

      Hello.I remember that story.It was on a tv series called “Night Visions”.
      There were other good stories dramatized on the show.But “The Window”
      scared the bejeebers out of me! lol.

  21. Lee Billingsley said

    No takers for crazy portal vampire story, eh? At around the same time – mid to late eighties – I read an anthology of, I think, mostly British stories (so, more in keeping with Vault of Evil), the theme of which was that each of the stories was open to both supernatural and psychological interpretation. In the only story I can really pinpoint as belonging to that anthology, the narrator stays at a French farm and falls in love with a serving-girl. At the climax of the story, a family feast, we are left wondering whether she in fact existed, whether she is being eaten at the feast, and whether she was some sort of shape-shifter all along. Very ambiguous (a bit like Aickman, I seem to remember, but not as good; then again, who is?) and very haunting. You’ll have to take my word for it, I’m afraid, as I don’t think I’ve got much of a future as a literary agent!

  22. Dr Terror said

    The French farm story sounds a bit like By the River Fontainbleau by Stephen Gallagher.

  23. davidjennings said

    I was wondering if anyone could help me identify a short story called House of Cards. I cannot remember the name of the author but I can remember that it was published in a collection of short stories which came as a free gift with a teenage magazine in 1999 or thereabouts. The plot dealt with a group of teenagers using Tarot cards in the hope of predicting their futures and had one of them saying to another about what a certain card might mean for her “It probably means I’m going to fail my exams”. Any help would be very much appreciated.

  24. HeidiKaye said

    Really hoping someone will know this one.
    About 15 years ago, I read a short story where a young wife tries to play a game with her husband – “Guess what I did for you today?” and the other person is supposed to guess silly things, but eventually try to guess what was done. She eventually has a boy and a girl and teaches them the game. (spoiler) The husband ends up being a royal jerk, and he gets thrown off the balcony to his death. The stinger of the story is that after this happens, the kids come running into the room to get their mother, pulling her towards the balcony, saying, “Guess what we did for you today?”
    I want to say I read this in one of the Alfred Hitchcock Presents anthologies (although definitely not Stories For Late at Night, because I own that one), but since I can’t remember the name of it, it’s hard to double check.
    Any ideas?

    • demonik said

      Hello Heidi

      according to Matt on the Vault forum, the story you’re after is View From The Terrace” by Mike Marmer from Hitchcock’s ‘Stories Not For The Nervous’, and “If you have the paperback editions then it’s in volume one (page 54)”

  25. Frightful said

    Hello! I was wondering if you could write
    a page about Mary Williams?

    I’ve just recently discovered her books
    about ghosts and the supernatural
    (I already have two: Unseen Footsteps
    and the Ghostly Carnival),and so I would
    really like it if you could tell me what other
    books of ghost stories she may have written
    and what they are about.Please.

    The ones that I’ve read so far bring to mind the
    ‘strange stories’ by Robert Aickman…that’s how
    good Mary Williams stories are! :) Thank You.

    • demonik said

      Can’t really tell you much about them, as i’ve read little of her work, but here’s a listing of Mary’s ghost story collections and novels, all of them – to the best of my knowledge – published in hard-cover by William Kimber. Best of luck in hunting down the ones you’re missing!

      The Dark Land: A Book of Cornish Ghost Stories (1975)
      Chill Company: Ghost Stories from Cornwall (1976)
      Where Phantoms Stir: Ghost Stories (1976)
      They Walk at Twilight: Stories of Ghosts and the Occult (1977)
      Unseen Footsteps: Ghost Stories (1977)
      Where No Birds Sing: Stories of the Macabre (1977/78?)
      The Haunted Valley and other ghost stories (1978)
      Ghostly Carnival: Cornish Ghost Stories (1980)
      The Dark God: A Novel of the Occult and other Supernatural Stories (1980)
      The Haunted Garden (1986)
      Haunted Waters (1987)

  26. Frightful said

    Hi! I am trying to find a zombie story about a
    zombie uprising and this guy is playing online
    and one by one the other gamers “log off”
    (their brains eaten by the zombies,I,
    until the guy is the last one playing.

    If you know the title and the author’s name or even
    which anthology I may find it in,I would greatly appreciate

    p.s.Why don’t zombies ever eat each OTHER? :)

    • demonik said

      You ever tasted a zombie?

      Hi frightful. Your story isn’t ringing any bells with me but will ask on our forum, see if any of the ghastly gang can help.

  27. Frightful said

    Hi.I forgot to check the box for
    the comments notification about
    my zombie story question before
    I posted.

    How do I do that? Thanks. :)

  28. H_P_Saucecraft said

    Hi Dem, hoping you can help, only place I could think of to ask. I can’t log into Vault, when I enter my login & password, It says “We’re sorry. We could not find an account with this username. Please try again.”, and I have definitely entered things correctly. Is there a glitch or am I going to need to re-register?



    • demonik said

      Hi Mr. Saucecraft!

      There was a board upgrade yesterday – perhaps it was still updating everything while you were attempting to log in? Your account is still active, so might just be a case of clearing your browser cache. Let me know if you are still experiencing problems, and I’ll get onto the support forum.


      • H_P_Saucecraft said

        Hi Dem,

        I tried cleaning out the browser cache & I still can’t log in. If you can get onto the support forum, that would be great, Thanks.



      • demonik said

        Hi Dave

        I’ve emailed you your h*tm**l account, save you keep having to log in here! Don’t worry, we’ll get there eventually!

  29. Sandy said

    Triying to register (wanted to tell you about Kay Dick The Uncertain Element as site says you know naught about it) I found I couldn’t as the prove-youre-human box just says Media Error and the Terms n Conditions box will not accept tick. Help?!

    • demonik said

      Hi Sandy. That’s a weird one! I’m really not sure what the problem is there as they’ve let your message through (!!!) Would be very grateful of any info you can supply re ‘The Uncertain Element’ as a copy has eluded me for years. If it’s OK by you, will email you tomorrow and we’ll try work it out from there?

  30. Jay said

    I read an old book in the 1980s from the Hornsey Library in London by a British male author which was an anthology of stories with wizards competing each other commanding dead zombie armies . One exciting story had a wizard go through a painting on the wall into another dimension. I found them well written and much more exciting than the Harry Porter thrash in the movies. Would be grateful if you can guess the author or the book. I doubt if it is still available for purchase or as an ebook.

  31. adsensei said

    Hi. I stumbled my way here looking for the Alfred Hitchcock anthologies. I live in the Philippines, and over the years have borrowed or found them in dusty second hand bookstores, but now it’s rare to find them. Any chance they could be bought or read online? Much thanks.

  32. John Coffman said

    I’ve been searching for a story that I read last year and forgot the author/title. It’s about a man who comes home from work one day and has trouble unlocking his front door. And when he does manage to open it, his furniture all ups and leaves scraping/rocking out the door and down the road. Some months later he coincidentally discovers them in an antique dealers shop…Does this ring a bell in anyone’s ear?

    • Terry said

      Hi, John. The author is Guy de Maupassant and the story’s title escapes me but it’s something like “Who knows”.

  33. I have the fairly recent publication culled from A Century of Creepy Stories, (‘Creepy Stories’ – ed. by Fred Urquhart) This is fairly easy to find. Does anyone know if there was a reprinted cull of the stories from the second series – A Second Century of Creepy Stories, ed. by Hugh Walpole?

  34. Edward Dixon, Jr. said

    Wow! Took me nearly 54 years to find this valuable information right here on the worldwide web! You have given me yet a new reason to get out of bed every day! It’s my new mission to collect all the movie tie-in books such as “Sardonicus And Other Stories”. Thanks!

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