How to Read a Victorian Christmas Ghost Story Imagine a midwinter night, an early sunset, a long, drafty evening spent by candlelight. The season of Christmas coincides with the shortest days of the year and, for middle-class Victorians, a chance for families to reconnect in story-telling circles. Urban dwellers, disconnected from village legends, simply picked … Continue reading Ghosts & Christmas—in Case You’ve Ever Wondered…
Amazing illustrations by Herbert Railton for the posthumous illustrated edition (1896) of a poem by Thomas Hood entitled The Haunted House.
The approach to Christmas is also traditionally the time for ghost stories. The most famous of British writers of ghost stories, M R James, often gathered together friends or students at this time of year to read one of his latest offerings to them. You can picture them in in an ancient university city, in an old academic’s study, lined with bookshelves and lit by candles or gaslights. You can imagine a small group of like minded men in comfortable chairs gathered round the storyteller. Perhaps the only light is the one illuminating the reader’s manuscript.
It’s always gatherings of men in these things isn’t it? So wipe some of them from your mind and insert some academic women in their place, perhaps in evening dress after some college function. The reader is an equal opportunity teller of scary tales. You can insert a clergyman if you like, and a nun,or even a…
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Nick is a cool cat…with tentacles. This is a nice writeup. This book is on my To Read This Summer list. Put it on yours, too.
‘Nick Mamatas is the author of Move Under Ground, Under My Roof, and several other novels. But his latest, I Am Providence, looks like a breakout book.
Set at a horror convention, where a grisly murder leads to the discovery of an unspeakable horror in the pages of ancient book bound in human skin, I am Providence is narrated by a faceless corpse in a morgue.
Here’s a longer, official description…
Israeli author of award-winning speculative fiction (Osama, The Bookman, Camera Obscura) Lavie Tidhar says that “I am Providence is Dark and hilarious… that murder-mystery-in-a-writers-convention you didn’t even know you wanted.”
Publishers Weekly calls the novel: “A heartfelt homage to Lovecraft lore, [which] perfectly captures the antics of conventioneers.”
I Am Providence was published by Night Shade Books on August 9, 2016. It is 243 pages; priced at $16.99 in trade paperback, and $15.99 for the digital version.
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Anything by writer and scholar S. T. Joshi is a must read. Joshi lends a credibility and and intellectual element to the reading and study of horror, weird, and supernatural in fiction in academia and pop culture.
Cover art by Allen Koszowski, 2016
Table of Contents
I. The Classics
From Gothic to Weird
The Canon of American Weird Fiction
Weird Poetry, Then and Now
Poe as Revolutionary
The Life and Work of Ambrose Bierce
A Biography of the Mind
Shirley Jackson as a Classic
II. Some Contemporaries
Terror in the Northwest
Campbell and Lovecraft
Rain, Rain, Everywhere
Fifty Years of Ramsey Campbell
Terror in a Sentence
The Sublime and the Ridiculous
Just Like the Movies
A Slow-Moving Tsunami
A Modern “Heart of Darkness”
Sculptures in Prose
The Mystery Man of Weird Fiction
Spanning the Genres with William F. Nolan
Of Revenants and Seedy Taverns
Road Dogs and Iron Dead
III. Some Anthologies
Driven to Madness with Fright
A Smorgasbord of Weird
Chambers, Lovecraft, and Pastiche
The Anthologies of Jason V Brock and William F. Nolan
IV. H. P. Lovecraft: His Disciples and His Critics
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Four very cool horror novellas. Among the coolest, in fact, that I have read in my lifetime.
Dark Gods by T. E. D. Klein, 4 Horror Novellas…
Table of Contents
1. Children of the Kingdom
3. Black Man with a Horn
4. Nadelman’s God
The sadly non-prolific T.E.D. Klein published his only novel, The Ceremonies, in 1984 (an expansion of his story “The Events at Poroth Farm”, another very frightening story that first appeared in Shadows 2, edited by Charles L. Grant). 1984! Klein’s second book, followed a year later: the collection Dark Gods, which is comprised of four novellas written during the previous decade. Klein was editor of Twilight Zone magazine at the time (the magazine published well-respected short horror stories until its demise in 1989).
Although all of his fiction is set in the modern era, its care and subtlety hearken back to late 19th/early 20th century masters like M.R. James, Arthur Machen, Algernon Blackwood, Sheridan Le Fanu, Lovecraft—there is even a hint…
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A new novel by one of the great writers of the literary weird of the last 100 years. If you haven’t read Kiernan you need to.
Art by Christine Foster.
First of all Caitlín R. Kiernan is this blogger’s favorite writer. There are many reasons for this, too many to go into in a quick post like this.
If you haven’t read Kiernan, you’re missing out.
I am excited to learn she has a new novella due out from TOR publishing this coming February. Her work is extremely collectible and so I do not exaggerate when I say, pre-order your copy now. I have provided the link to Amazon below. You can also pre-order for nook, and ibook.
From the lovely folks over at TOR publishing:
“We’re excited to share the cover for Agents of Dreamland, a Lovecraftian first-contact novella by Caitlín R. Kiernan—available February 2017 from Tor.com Publishing…”
A government special agent known only as the Signalman gets off a train on a stunningly hot morning in Winslow, Arizona. Later that day he meets a…
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