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Archive for the ‘Michel Parry’ Category

Michel Parry – The Hounds Of Hell

Posted by demonik on September 8, 2007

Michel Parry (ed.) – The Hounds Of Hell  (Arrow, 1975)

Hounds Of Hell

Introduction – Michel Parry

H. P. Lovecraft – The Hound
Ambrose Bierce – Staley Flemming’s Hallucination
Ivan Turgenev – The Dog
Agatha Christie – The Hound Of Death
Manly Wade wellman – Dead Dog
Catherine Crowe – The Dutch Officer’s Story
Guy de Maupassant – Vendetta
Theo Gift – Dog Or Demon?
Saki – Louis
Fritz Leiber – The Howling Tower
Feodor Sologub – The White Dog
William Faulkner – The Hound
Ray Bradbury – The Emissary
Robert Bloch – The Hound Of Pedro
Ramsey Campbell – The Whining
Dion Fortune – The Death Hound

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Michel Parry – The Devil’s Children

Posted by demonik on September 8, 2007

Michel Parry (ed.) – The Devil’s Children: Tales of Demons & Exorcists (Orbit, 1974)

Devil’s Children

Michel Parry – Introduction

Robert Bloch – Enoch
R. H. Benson – Father Meuron’s Tale
Ramsey Campbell – Vacant Possession
Guy De Maupassant – The Horla
H. P. Lovecraft – The Thing on the Doorstep
August Derleth – Saunder’s Little Friend
Roger Pater – A Porta Inferi
Henry S. Whitehead – The Lips
Richard Matheson – From Shadowed Places
Robert Bloch – The Unspeakable Betrothal
J. A. Cuddon – Isabo
John Collier – The Possession of Angela Bradshaw

Another strong selection, even if many of the better stories are now overfamiliar. Needless to say, The Exorcist was rather popular at the time …

Whitehead wrote some excellent voodoo stories for Weird Tales in the ‘twenties and ‘thirties, and The Lips is arguably his masterpiece (but try Seven Turns In A Hangman’s Rope if you get the chance).  J. A. Cuddon would go on to write lengthy introductions to both the Penguin Book of Horror Stories and the Penguin Book of Ghost Stories in 1984.

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Michel Parry – Christopher Lee’s ‘X’ Certificate

Posted by demonik on September 8, 2007

Michel Parry (ed) – Christopher Lee’s ‘X’ Certificate (Star, 1975)

Christopher Lee’s X certificate

Introduction – Christopher Lee

Fritz Leiber – The Spider
Henry Kuttner – I, The Vampire
Robert Bloch – Talent
Basil Copper – Amber Print
Clark Ashton Smith – The Gorgon
Peter Flemming – The Kill
Richard Matheson – Blood Son
Robert E. Howard – The Black Stone
W. C. Morrow – The Monster Maker
Bram Stoker – The Judges House

Stories pertaining to the perils of the film industry (see also Peter Haining’s The Hollywood Nightmare) and Lee’s experiences of same, even if the stories are selected by Parry. The majority need no introduction, although Leiber’s delightful The Spider  isn’t as well known as it deserves to be. You’ll probably have most of these stories a number of times over, but that doesn’t make the likes of Matheson’s brilliant vampire story, Flemming’s werewolf yarn or Morrow’s variation on the Frankenstein theme bad stories and fans of The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari will surely appreciate Basil Copper’s unseen footage.

Lee’s introduction contains the perennial grouching about playing Dracula, and why he won’t be doing so again …

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Michel Parry – The Devil’s Kisses

Posted by demonik on September 8, 2007

Linda Lovecraft [Michel Parry] (ed) – The Devil’s Kisses (Corgi, 1976)

Devil’s Kisses

“From the publishers of THE EXORCIST – the world’s first collection of erotic horror stories.”

Introduction – Linda Lovecraft

Adobe James – The Ohio Love Sculpture
Edogawa Rampo – The Human Chair
Christianna Brand – Akin To Love
Andre Pieyre de Mandiargues – The Diamond
Charles Beaumont – The Love-Master
Poul Anderson – Operation Incubus
Mindret Lord – Naked Lady
C. L. Moore – Shambleau
John Blackburn – Jenny Cut-Throat
Ramsey Campbell – The Other Woman
Chris Miller – Boxed In

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Michel Parry – The Rivals of Frankenstein

Posted by demonik on September 8, 2007

Michel Parry – The Rivals of Frankenstein: A Gallery of Monsters (Corgi, 1977)

Rivals Frankenstein

Introduction – Michel Parry

Clark Ashton Smith – The Colossus Of Ylourgne
Arnold Harvey – The Last Of The Daubeny-Fitzalans
Jerome K. Jerome – The Dancing Partner
Ambrose Bierce – Moxon’s Master
Donald F. Glut – Dr. Karnstein’s Creation
Robert Bloch – Almost Human
D. Scott-Moncrieff – Count Szolnok’s Robots
Manly Wade Wellman – Pithecanthropus Rejectus
Fritz Leiber – The Dead Man
Eando Binder – The Iron Man

Posted in *Corgi*, Michel Parry | 1 Comment »

Michel Parry – The Rivals Of King Kong

Posted by demonik on September 8, 2007

Michel Parry (ed.) – The Rivals Of King Kong: A Rampage Of Beasts (Corgi, 1977)

Are you ready to be frightened out of your gorilla skin?

Introduction – Michel Parry

Philip Jose Farmer – After King Kong Fell
H. Rider-Haggard – The Monster God
Hugh B. Cave – The Cult Of The White Ape
Howard Waldrop – Dr. Hudson’s Secret Gorilla
Joseph F. Pumilia – The Myth Of The Ape God
Karl E. Wagner & David Drake – Killer
Kit Reed – The Attack Of The Giant Baby
Henry Kuttner – Beauty And The Beast
P. Schulyer-Miller – Spawn
Robert Silverberg – The Day The Monsters Broke Loose
Steven Utley – Deviation From A Theme

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Michel Parry – The Rivals of Dracula

Posted by demonik on September 8, 2007

Michel Parry – The Rivals of Dracula: A Century of Vampire fiction (Corgi, 1977; Severn House, 1978)

Introduction – Michel Parry

Rivals Of Dracula

Ramsey Campbell – Conversion
Anonymous – The Mysterious Stranger
Frederick Cowles – The Vampire Of Kaldenstein
Jean Ray – The Guardian Of The Cemetery
M. R. James – Count Magnus
E. & H. Heron – The Story Of Baelbrow
E. Everett Evans – The Undead Die
Manly Wade Wellman – The Horror Undying
Robert Bloch – The Bat Is My Brother
Charles Beaumont – Blood Brother
David Drake – Something Had to Be Done
Steven Utley – Night Life

Severn House hardback edition, 1978: Jacket photo & design by Michael R. Carter

Ramsey Campbell – Conversion: sees our old friend the Transylvanian peasant pay a visit to Castle Dracula to confront him over the death of his sister in law. When he leaves the castle, his mind is a blank – all he can remember is that he found the suspected-vampire very affable. He reaches his house but … why does it smell so horrible all of a sudden?

Anon – The Mysterious Stranger: Often cited as an influence on “Dracula”, and the early scenes, notably an attack by wolves, the setting (Carpathian Mountains) and the vampire count (Azzo Von Klakta in this case) suggest it’s not improbable that Stoker had some familiarity with it. The explanation for the hero Woislaw’s prodigious strength – which is such that Azzo mistakes him for one of his own kind – is just one example of what makes this story a cherished Victorian gem.

Frederick Cowles – The Vampire Of Kaldenstein: Derivative of Dracula, and reads like a story board for the Hammer films of a quarter of a century later. It is, of course, brilliant!
The narrator, traveling in Germany in 1933, arrives at the hamlet of Kaldenstein. There he encounters the usual dour locals at the inn, who cross themselves at the mention of Count Ludwig Von Kaldenstein, warn him against visiting the castle, etc., etc. A local priest of similar ‘superstitious’ bent likewise begs him to give it a miss, but the foolish Englishman won’t be told.

Jean Ray – The Guardian Of The Cemetery: A hobo takes a job as a keeper at St. Guitton Cemetery, where none have been buried in twenty years since the Countess Opoltchenska died. Before her death, the Countess bought the necropolis outright, had a vault readied and stipulated the grounds would be kept by three men, two of them being her servants, the third to be employed and supervised by these two.

M. R. James – Count Magnus: Touring Sweden, the unfortunate Mr. Wraxall discovers family papers in a house in Vestgothland, charting the career of a saturnine seventeenth century noble, a dabbler in alchemy reputed to have made the black pilgrimage to Chorazin where it’s said the Anti-Christ will be born. It is also the recommended haunt of those wishing to “obtain a long life, acquire a faithful messenger and see the blood of his enemies”.

E & H. Heron – The Story Of Baelbrow: The Swaffama family mansion has been haunted for centuries, but the present day family are rather fond of their spook – until it turns malefic and frightens a maid to death. Trusty Flaxman Low investigates.

E. Everett Evans – The Undead Die: Robert Warram wakes during a storm to discover that the splintered limb of a great tree has smashed through the lid of his beloved wife’s coffin, impaling her through the heart. He reminisces on their several decades together, pre- and post- their being vampirised. Now Lisa has gone, he has nothing to unlive for.

Manly Wade Wellman – The Horror Undying: Seeking shelter from a snowstorm in a deserted cabin, he discovers papers detailing the careers of Captain Stanslas – a cannibal sentenced to death by firing squad for his grisly exploits – and Maxim, hung for drinking the blood of a labourer he murdered in 1879. The narrator arrives at the dreadful conclusion that these two are one and the same man – “a werewolf, killed and left to rise from death to be a blood drinking vampire.” And Then …

Robert Bloch – The Bat Is My Brother: Recently resuscitated Graham Keene is the plaything of an unnamed Prussian undead who regards the human race as “cattle” and will stop at nothing to achieve global domination. Keene seems to be going along with him, but sentiments like “let him suffer until the maggots at last reach his corrupt brain and eat away his evil consciousness” suggest there are still some bridges to be built in their relationship.

Charles Beaumont – Blood Brother: Modern day vampire on the psychiatrists couch, moaning about his lot. Mention of name ‘Dorcas’ drives shrink to desperate measures.

David Drake – Something Had To Be Done: Absolutely horrible. Captain Richmond visits the Lunkowski family to relate the details of their son’s death in ‘nam. He’s accompanied by Morzec, who witnessed the lad’s final moments. Morzec is a truly hideous figure, a victim of malignant melanoma (“in another two weeks I’ll be warted to death”). It comes in handy that he’s nothing to live for.

Stephen Utley – Night Life: The Vampire as Charles Bronson in Death Wish. Erich arrives in NY. On his first night, he dines on a Central Park mugger and a hooker. He flies off over the city, satisfied that he’ll thrive here.

Posted in *Corgi*, *Severn House*, Michel Parry | Leave a Comment »

Linda Lovecraft – More Devil’s Kisses

Posted by demonik on September 2, 2007

Linda Lovecraft [Michel Parry] (ed.) – More Devil’s Kisses (Corgi, 1977)


Introduction – Linda Lovecraft

Mary E. Counselman – Something Old
Maurice Level – The Last Kiss
H. R. Wakefield – Monstrous Regiment
May Sinclair – The Nature of the Evidence
R. Chetwynd-Hayes – The Fly-by-Night
Jerome Bixby – The Best Lover In Hell
Erika Johansson – Some Like It Cold
Angela Carter – Master
Ramsey Campbell – Loveman’s Comeback
Joseph F. Pumilia – Toad
Steven Utley – Sidhe
David Drake – Smokie Joe
Chris Miller – The Magic Show

Famously withdrawn and existing stock pulped after Scotland Yard took an interest in Chris Miller’s story.

Maurice Level – The Last Kiss: A husband, blinded and hideously deformed when his wife through vitriol in his face after he threatened to leave her, intervenes on her behalf when the case comes to court, preventing her from receiving a long jail sentence. At his request she pays him an emotional visit in which she begs his forgiveness and somehow even manages to kiss him, whereupon … Well, not for nothing is Level feted as a master practitioner of the conte cruel.

Jerome Bixby – The Best Lover In Hell: Jim Maddock, sinner, seducer, adulterer and all round fornicator, encounters the Devil in the SW corner of Gehenna. “The lava had burned most of the skin off his torso – raw patches of flesh showed – his lips were cracked, his hair was gone, and his earlobes were crackly black husks. But he laughed.” Jim offers the Devil a challenge, namely to prove which of them is the better lover. Jim has a lot of fun – with Cleopatra, Marie Antoinette, Madame Bovary & co. – in coming off second best and earns himself the coveted position of special honorary demon who must guard the corridor wherein lie these beauties for all eternity. And “satisfy utterly their every demand”.

Angela Carter – Master: “…had first exercised a propensity for savagery in the acrid lavatories of a minor English Public School where he used to press the heads of the new boys into the ceramic bowl and then pull the flush upon them to drown their gurgling protests. After puberty, he turned his indefinable but exacerbated rage upon the pale, flinching bodies of young women whose flesh he lacerated with his teeth, fingernails and sometimes his leather belt in the beds of cheap hotels near London’s great rail terminus.

It is in Africa he meets his match in the form of a native girl he buys and systematically brutalises. Syphilitic and insane, he leaves a trail of innumerable jaguar corpses across the continent until she, by now quite as degenerate as her master, metamorphosises into a jaguar-woman ….

R. Chetwynd-Hayes – The Fly-By-Night: Tobias the cat is forever leaving presents on the carpet for owners Newton Hatfield and his daughter Celia. One evening they return home to find an odd creature, ‘pretty’, fanged and leathery of wing which Celia adopts although Newton is far from keen. The Fly-by-night feeds on extreme human emotion of the darkest hue, and when Newton comes close to murdering his daughter in an argument, he realises it’s time to destroy it. Problem is, the creature has grown considerably by now and he’s also gotten around to ravishing Celia.

Joseph F. Pumilia – Toad: An ugly teenager, despised by his contemporaries, Toad is so called because of his facial resemblance to that warty creature. So how comes he’s so popular with the women teachers?

Erika Johansson – Some Like It Cold: Bo Rosenkwist wants to be the first man to have sex at the North Pole and persuades Barbro, a trainee gym instructor, to partner him. Barbro frets about the Ice Giants “said to keep up their numbers by taking over the bodies of travellers frozen in the snow”, but Bo has too much on his mind to pay her any heed. On their first night at the Pole, Barbro wanders naked from their tent and Bo has his first and last encounter with frosty the snowman and his mates.

Chris Miller – The Magic Show: As mentioned (many times) above, the story that lead to the book being trashed after an intervention from Scotland Yard’s finest. Mrs. Levine hires a magic show for son Ira’s seventh birthday party. While the parents congratulate her on such a marvellous idea, Dr. Fun and Mr. Frog organise a drug fuelled, infant orgy next door. Just when you think it can’t get any worse, a pony is introduced into the proceedings …

Posted in *Corgi*, Linda Lovecraft, Michel Parry | Leave a Comment »

Michel Parry – Roots Of Evil

Posted by demonik on September 1, 2007

‘Carlos Cassaba’ (Michel Parry) ed. – Roots Of Evil: Beyond The Secret Life Of Plants (Corgi, 1976).

Introduction by Carlos Cassaba

Clark Ashton Smith – The Seed From The Sepulchre
H. G. Wells – The Flowering Of The Strange Orchid
Nathaniel Hawthorne – Rappaccini’s Daughter
Hester Holland – Dorner Cordaianthus
Manly Wade Wellman – Come Into My Parlour
Mary Elizabeth Counselman – The Tree’s Wife
David H. Keller – The Ivy War
John Collier – Green Thoughts
Fritz Leiber – Dr. Adams’ Garden Of Evil
Frederic Brown – Daisies
Margaret St. Clair – The Gardener
Clifford Simak – Green Thumb

It’s official: Flowers hate us, and you’ll never be able to look at a potted plant the same way again.

Parry’s collection is a lot more enjoyable than you might think, this largely due to the sheer bloodthirstiness of the delinquent Triffids that pop up in just about every other story. My personal pick of the bunch are the Clark Ashton Smith story, which is truly creepy and has a moment of awesome horror when the main protagonist suddenly develops a headache. “Green Thoughts” almost certainly inspired Roger Corman’s “The little Shop Of Horrors” and “Rappaccini’s Daughter” is both horrific and terribly sad, as we learn the lengths a mad scientist will go to to conduct his experiments.

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