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Posts Tagged ‘Marjorie Bowen’

Wordsworth Editions: Best publisher of the 00’s?

Posted by demonik on December 21, 2009


As far as i know they’ve never even been shortlisted for a British Fantasy Award but Wordsworth editions have my nomination for publishers of the decade. The good news is, the good work will continue just as soon as 2010 is upon us with a reprint of James Malcolm Rymer’s Varney The Vampyre in January followed by the James Doig edited anthology, Australian Ghost Stories, the following month.


Murderous ghosts, horrific curses and monstrous beings haunt an unforgiving landscape into which travelers stray at their peril. Journey through the dark byways of Australia’s Gothic past in the rare stories gathered in this memorable new collection. Work by acclaimed Australian writers such as Marcus Clarke, Henry Lawson and Edward Dyson appears alongside many lesser-known authors such as Beatrice Grimshaw, Mary Fortune and Ernest Favenc. Many of the stories collected here have never been reprinted since their first publication in 19th and early 20th century periodicals and showcase the richness and variety of the Australian ghost and horror story.

James Doig provides an authoritative introduction full of fresh insights into Australian Gothic fiction with detailed biographical notes on the authors represented.

my pick of those i’ve read to date would include:

M. G. Lewis – The Monk
Mark Valentine (ed) – The Werewolf Pack
David S. Davies (ed.) – The Sexton Blake Casebook
Marjorie Bowen – The Bishop Of Hell
Anonymous – Sweeney Todd
E. Nesbit – Powers Of Darkness
George W. M. Reynolds – Wagner, The Werewolf
William Fryer Harvey – The Beast With Five Fingers
David Blair (ed.) – Gothic Short Stories
Dennis Wheatley – The Devil Rides Out

Happy Christmas and thanks for such a great selection, Derek and skeleton staff!

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Anon – Fifty Masterpieces Of Mystery

Posted by demonik on October 22, 2009

Anon – Fifty Masterpieces Of Mystery (Odhams, nd.  [1937])


Crime Stories

Dorothy L. Sayers – The Learned Adventure Of The Dragon’s Head
Austin Freeman – The Magic Casket
H. C. Bailey – The President Of San Jacinto
Anthony Berkeley – Outside The Law
The Baroness Orczy – The Regent’s Park Murder
Margery Allingham – They Never Got Caught
J. J. Connington – Before Insulin
Stacy Aumonier – The Perfect Murder
G. K. Chesterton – The Shadow Of The Shark
O. Henry – The Marsonettes
F. Britten Austin – Diamond Cut Diamond
Augustus Muir – Murder At The Microphone
Milward Kennedy – Death In The Kitchen
Freeman Willis Croft – The Vertical Line
Edgar Wallace – The Clue Of Monday’s Settling
Gerard Fairlie – The Ghost Of A Smile
Bertram Atkey – Sons Of The Chief Warder

Strange And Horrible Stories

Seamark – Query
Ralph Straus – The Room On The Fourth Floor
A. E. W. Mason – The Wounded God
Lord Dunsany – The Electric King
A. J. Alan – Charles
John Metcalfe – The Funeral March Of A Marionette
W. W. Jacobs – The Interruption
C. D. Heriot – Nobody At Home
Agatha Christie – The Blood-Stained Pavement
Mrs. Belloc Lowdnes – St. Catherine’s Eve
F. Marion Crawford – The Screaming Skull
Joseph Conrad – The Idiots
Sydney Horler – The Vampire
Saki – The Interlopers
L. P. Hartley – The Travelling Grave
E. A. Poe – The Tell-Tale Heart
H. Spicer – The Bird Woman
W. Fryer Harvey – The Dabblers

Ghost Stories

Vernon Lee – Marsyas In Flanders
Eleanor Scott – The Room
Marjorie Bowen – Florence Flannery
Ernest Bramah – The Ghost At Massingham Mansions
Norman Matson – The House On Big Faraway
Naomi Royde-Smith – Madam Julia’s Tale
L. A. G. Strong – Sea Air
Ann Bridge – The Buick Saloon
May Sinclair – The Token
Oliver Onions – The Cigarette Case
Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch – A Pair Of Hands
H. R. Wakefield – Blind Man’s Buff
Algernon Blackwood – The Man Who Was Milligan
Richard Hughes – The Ghost
A. M. Burrage – The Room Over The Kitchen
J. S. LeFanu – Mr. Justice Harbottle
Anonymous – The Dead Man Of Varley Grange


Eleanor Scott – The Room: “I’m not going to try and tell you what it was … I’d as soon try to describe the most loathsome surgical operation or the most indecent physical illness. And if I wanted to, I couldn’t. Thank Heaven, we haven’t made the word for what I saw.”

A room in Massingham’s house has the reputation of being haunted, so when five of his friends answer his invitation to stay with him, naturally they decide to each take a turn at spending a night in the creepy chamber and “do down the spook!” By the time Amery the Parson gets to take his turn, it’s clear from the state of Grindley and Vernon that whatever is in there is far more powerful and evil than a mere ghost. By the following morning, the Parson is a broken man, but Reece, the ‘simple’ little curate, is insistent that he’s not going to be denied the experience. Although we’re never told outright what each man endured in the room – the closest we get is with Amery who is confronted by the past crimes of his Church – it hardly makes the goings-on any less unsettling. Not quite as striking as Randall’s classic Celui-La but very deserving of your attention i’d have said. “There must be an amazing amount of goodness somewhere when here is such a quantity of unspeakable evil in men like us, who thought ourselves decent fellows enough.”

John Metcalfe – The Funeral March Of A Marionette: On a snowy, bitterly cold November 4th, budding entrepreneur Alf and little George drag a trolley along the Millbank, collecting a small fortune in coppers from admires of their uncannily lifelike Guy. Unfortunately, old Gus the tramp isn’t equip to handle the sub-zero temperatures ….

A. M. Burrage – The Room Over The Kitchen: A weary rambler arrives in Penhiddoc, his one thought to get a room at the inn for the night. In the doorway, he’s accosted by a fellow who he takes to be the local harmless lunatic who implores him not to take the room over the kitchen. It transpires that twenty years ago, four Oxford students stayed at the inn. For a chuckle, a trio of these fellows, in cahoots with the landlord, convinced the nervous young Mr. Farney that his room was haunted. They pushed the joke too far ….

C. D. Heriot – Nobody At Home: Frank and Maurice have drifted out of each others lives since Oxford, and now the former, learning his old pal has fallen on hard times, is keen to put the friendship back on course. Maurice has tried to make a go of it as a poet, but as soon as he arrives at the decrepit old schoolhouse that serves as his home, Frank realises it’s gone very badly for him. At first, Frank is angry that he may have made a wasted journey as no-one replies to his knocks at the door. But when he takes a look through the letterbox ….

Henry Spicer – The Bird Woman: A young lady answers an advertisement for a position as carer to “an invalid, infirm or lunatic person” at a dingy-looking house which has the reputation of being haunted. “Having little fear of anything human and none at all of apparitions” she’s confident that she’ll be able to cope with her charge – until she actually claps eyes on the owl-like travesty she’s expected to look after.

Sydney Horler – The Vampire: Two Roman Catholic priests discuss the case of a man of whom everyone seemed to have an “instinctive horror”. When a terrible murder is committed, leaving the victim minus most of her throat, the shunned individual confesses to Father ——, who, of course, he is powerless to pass on the information to the police. Sometimes published as The Believer

Richard Hughes – The Ghost: Told from the perspective of Millie, who’s just had her head bashed in by cheating husband Johnny. Having spent her life terrified of ghosts, now she’s evidently one herself Millie intends to haunt the murderer, especially as he doesn’t seem the least perturbed about what he’s done.

H. R. Wakefield – Blind Man’s Buff: Aylesbury, Herts. Mr. Cort learns why none of the locals will approach Lorn Manor after nightfall. In pitch darkness, He loses himself within a few feet of the front door and is pursued about the old house by unseen entities.

W. W. Jacobs – The Interruption: With his wife dead at last Spencer Goddard can get his hands on all of her lovely money! How happy he is! For all of twenty seconds. Hannah, his cook, wastes no time in letting on that she knows more about her late mistress’s “illness” – and his part in it – than he’d prefer and neither is she slow in turning the situation to her advantage. Should she die suddenly – like poor Mrs. Goddard for example – she’s left a letter with her sister , the contents of which he should regret being made known to the police. Now he must think of a way to save his neck and see hers stretched he opts for a high risk solution …

Anonymous – The Dead Man Of Varley Grange: Westernshire. When young Henderson takes over the Grange, he unwisely invites eight friends to spend the Christmas holiday with him. Prior to his arrival the property had remained vacant for years due to the dreadful family curse as it is reputed that, some centuries ago, Captain Varley murdered his sister after she fled the Convent and ran off with her lover. Now their phantoms stalk the Grange and if you’re unfortunate enough to see the dead nun’s face you die within the year!

Posted in *Odhams*, Anonymous | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Dorothy L. Sayers – Great Short Stories of Detection, Mystery & Horror

Posted by demonik on October 18, 2009

Dorothy L. Sayers – Great Short Stories of Detection, Mystery & Horror (Gollancz, September 1928)


Margaret Oliphant – The Open Door
Charles Dickens – Story of the Bagman’s Uncle
Charles Collins & Charles Dickens- The Trial for Murder
M. R. James – Martin’s Close
Oliver Onions – Phantas
Robert Hichens – How Love Came to Professor Guildea
Saki – The Open Window
Arthur Machen – The Black Seal
Sax Rohmer – Tcheriapin
W. W. Jacobs – The Monkey’s Paw
A. J. Alan – The Hair
E. F. Benson – Mrs. Amworth
Ambrose Bierce – Moxon’s Master
Jerome J. Jerome – The Dancing Partner
Robert Louis Stevenson – Thrawn Janet
R. H. Benson – Father Meuron’s Tale
Marjorie Bowen – The Avenging of Ann Leete
J. F. Sullivan –  The Man With A Malady
William Fryer Harvey – August Heat
Morley Roberts – The Anticipator
Joseph Conrad – The Brute
May Sinclair – Where Their Fire Is Not Quenched
Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu – Green Tea
J. D. Beresford – The Misanthrope
John Metcalfe – The Bad Lands
Alfred M. Burrage – Nobody’s House
Arthur Quiller-Couch – The Seventh Man
N. Royde-Smith – Proof
Walter de la Mare – Seaton’s Aunt
Michael Arlen – The Gentleman From America
R. Ellis Roberts – The Narrow Way
Traditional – Sawney Beane
Bram Stoker – The Squaw
Violet Hunt – The Corsican Sisters
Barry Pain – The End of A Show
H. G. Wells – The Cone
Ethel Colburn Mayne – The Separate Room

The first of three epic volumes in this classic series; stories listed are the Mystery & Horror content only.  Series II and III to follow ASAP

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Marjorie Bowen – More Great Tales of Horror

Posted by demonik on October 5, 2009

Marjorie Bowen (ed.) –  More Great Tales of Horror (John Lane, 1935)

Help! Cover Wanted!

Help! Cover Wanted!

James Hogg – Laird of Cassway
J. S. Le Fanu – Wicked Captain Walshawe of Wauling
Allan Cunningham – Wooden Woman (aka The Haunted Ships)
W. W. Fenn – The Roon With the Arras
James Hogg – Laird of Wineholm
Allan Cunningham – Ezra Peden
Alexander Pushkin – The Coffin Maker
Anon – The Fatal Hour (translated from French by Marjorie Bowen)
Anon – Elie Anderson’s Revenge
Mrs. Catherine Crowe – The Haunted Mill
Anon – The Laird of Cool’s Ghost
J. S. Le Fanu – The Sexton’s Adventure
Anon – The Suitor of Selkirk
W.W. Fenn – Hand on the Latch
J.S. Le Fanu – Vision of Tom Chuff
Anon – Fain Bride
J. Smith – Black Joe O’ the Bow
Mrs. Catherine Crowe – A Ghost in Prison
Anon – The Accursed Portrait (translated from French by Marjorie Bowen)
Robert Chambers – Infernal Major Weir
J. S. Le Fanu – Spectre Lovers
Anon – The Murder Hole
J. G. Lockhart – Perling Joan
W.W. Fenn – Ghost on the Chain Pier
D. M. Moir – Resurrectior Men
Allan Cunningham – The Ghost With the Golden Casket

Posted in *John Lane*, Marjorie Bowen | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Cynthia Asquith – My Grimmest Nightmare

Posted by demonik on October 5, 2009

Cynthia Asquith (ed.)  –  My Grimmest Nightmare (Allen Unwin, 1935)

Help! Cover Wanted!

Help! Cover Wanted!

Cynthia Asquith – The Follower
Gabrielle Vallings – To Be Let Furnished
Miranda Stuart -Thunderbolt
Algernon Blackwood – By Water
Inez Holden – Not Long for This World
R. A. Monson – Jungle Night
L. Vorley – The Anonymous Gift
S. E. Reynolds – There Is One SOS
J. B. Morton – In the Jotunheim Mountains
E. Betts – Dead Man’s Room
Marjorie Bowen – Incubus
H. Jay – Into the Enemy’s Camp
H. de Vere Stacpoole – The Mask
N. Streatfield – Behind the Wall
E. Middleton – The Mad Hatter
James Laver – Six Months Ago
C. Madden – Rendezvous With Fate
Noel Langley – Serenade for Baboons
C. Spencer – The Surprise Item
Ann Knox – Split Second
Algernon Blackwood – The Blackmailers
Theodora Benson – Room 2000 Calling

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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)


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!

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Vote In The Wordsworth Editions Poll!

Posted by demonik on February 11, 2009

It’s one of the enduring mysteries surrounding the awards that horror people are so fond of bestowing upon one another: Why  Wordsworth Editions, arguably the best thing to happen to the genre in the noughties,  are so notably absent from each and every nominations list? Over the past few years their ludicrously tiny staff have been responsible for reissuing long sought novels and collections by the likes of R. Murray Gilchrist, Marjorie Bowen, Dennis Wheatley, May Sinclair, G. W. M. Reynolds and Mrs. Everett at a budget price (most of their stock retails at £2.99) and now here’s YOUR chance to have a shout in which authors they publish in 2010!

There are two polls: one comprising twenty authors whose work is out of copyright from which you may select up to five to be considered for publication in the ‘Mystery & The Supernatural’ series.

The second is limited to five authors – H. R. Wakefield, L. T. C. Holt, A. M. Burrage, Hugh Walpole & Arthur Machen – from whom you may select the two you’d most like to see back in print.

also, our friends at Wordsworth have kindly stumped up for a lucky dip!

“As a token of our thanks, everyone who votes in our poll (or has previously contributed a suggestion through email) will be put into a lucky dip, and 2 of you will win £50 of Amazon vouchers to use as you wish (although if you want to spend them on Wordsworth books, that’s fine with us!)”

Details on the Vault of Evil forum (i’m afraid you’ll have to register: don’t worry – just delete your account at the end of February once you’ve been entered for the lucky dip!)

Polls close on 28th February 2009 so get in quick!

Choose wisely, now.

Direct Links

Out of copyright
Still in copyright

Wordsworth Editions

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Aickman – Burke

Posted by demonik on August 31, 2007

Jack Adrian

Strange Tales From The Strand

Robert Aickman

1st Fontana Book Of Great Ghost Ghost Stories
2nd Fontana Book Of Great Ghost Ghost Stories
3rd Fontana Book Of Great Ghost Ghost Stories
4th Fontana Book Of Great Ghost Ghost Stories
5th Fontana Book Of Great Ghost Ghost Stories
6th Fontana Book Of Great Ghost Ghost Stories
7th Fontana Book Of Great Ghost Ghost Stories
8th Fontana Book Of Great Ghost Ghost Stories

Ric Alexander (Peter Haining)

The Unexplained

Dave Allen

A Little Night Reading


Anthology Of Fear
Arrow Book Of Horror Stories
2nd Arrow Book Of Horror Stories
Black Tales
A Century Of Creepy Stories
Mysteries: A Classic Collection
A Century Of Ghost Stories
50 Years Of Ghost Stories

A Century Of Thrillers: From Poe To Arlen
A Century Of Thrillers: Second Series
Chamber Of Horrors
Evening Standard Book Of Strange Stories
Evening Standard Second Book Of Strange Stories
Ghost Stories & Other Queer Tales
Horror Stories: By The Greatest Masters Of The Gruesome
The Man In Black
Readers Digest: Great Ghost Stories
Tales From Beyond The Grave
Tales Of Horror & Mystery
Tales Of The Dead
Tales Of The Supernatural
Times Anthology Of Ghost Stories
Wordsworth Collection Of Irish Ghost Stories

Margaret Armour

The Eerie Book

Mike Ashley

Weird Legacies
Mammoth Book Of Short Horror Novels

Lady Cynthia Asquith

The Ghost Book
The Black Cap
My Grimmest Nightmare
When Churchyards Yawn
Second Ghost Book
The Third Ghost Book

Denys Val Baker

Haunted Cornwall
Stories Of The Macabre
Stories Of The Night
Stories of Horror and Suspense
Stories of The Occult
Stories of the Supernatural
Stories of Fear
Cornish Ghost Stories
Ghosts in Country Houses
When Churchyards Yawn
Stories of Haunted Inns
Ghosts in Country Villages
Phantom Lovers
Haunted Travellers

Chris Baldick

The Oxford Book Of Gothic Tales

Chris Baldick & Robert Morrison

Tales Of Terror From ‘Blackwood’s Magazine
The Vampyre & Others

Christine Barnard

Fontana Book Of Great Horror Stories
2nd Fontana Book Of Great Horror Stories
3rd Fontana Book Of Great Horror Stories
4th Fontana Book Of Great Horror Stories

Allyson Bird & Joel Lane

Never Again

Charles Birkin

Powers Of Darkness
The Creeps Omnibus
Tales Of Fear
Tales Of Death
Tales Of Dread

Tandem Book Of Ghost Stories
Tandem Book Of Horror Stories

Angus Black

The Devil’s Coven

Charles Black

The Black Book Of Horror
The 2nd Black Book Of Horror
The 3rd Black Book Of Horror
The 4th Black Book Of Horror
The 5th Black Book Of Horror
The 6th Black Book Of Horror
The 7th Black Book Of Horror
The 8th Black Book Of Horror

David Blair

Gothic Short Stories

Marjorie Bowen

Great Tales Of Horror
More Great Tales Of Horror

Randolph C. Bull

Perturbed Spirits
Upon The Midnight: An Anthology Of Ghost And Horror Stories

John Burke

Tales Of Unease
More Tales Of Unease
New Tales Of Unease

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