A spirited Black Lizard anthology with over a thousand pages of haunted—and haunting—ghost tales. Includes eerie vintage ghost illustrations.
The ghost story is perhaps the oldest of all the supernatural literary genres and has captured the imagination of almost every writer to put pen to the page. Here, Edgar Award-winning editor Otto Penzler has followed his keen sense of the supernatural to collect the most chilling and uncanny tales in the canon. These spectral stories span more than a hundred years, from modern-day horrors by Joyce Carol Oates, Chet Williamson and Andrew Klavan, to pulp yarns from August Derleth, Greye La Spina, and M. L. Humphreys, to the atmospheric Victorian tales of Rudyard Kipling, Edith Wharton, and H. P. Lovecraft, not to mention modern works by the likes of Donald E. Westlake and Isaac Asimov that are already classics. Some of these stories have haunted the canon for a century, while others are making their first ghoulish appearance in book form. Whether you prefer possessive poltergeists, awful apparitions, or friendly phantoms, these stories are guaranteed to thrill you, tingle the spine, or tickle the funny bone, and keep you turning the pages with fearful delight.
Including such classics as “The Monkey’s Paw” and “The Open Window” and eerie vintage illustrations, and also featuring haunted mansions, midnight frights, lovers from beyond the grave, rapping, tapping, wailing shades, and ghosts, ghouls, and specters galore! AlsoFeaturing haunted mansions, midnight frights, lovers from beyond the grave, rapping, tapping, wailing shades, and ghosts, ghouls, and specters galore!
The literary ghost comes in all shapes, sizes, and predispositions, and an impressive variety flits through Penzler's latest mountain-sized omnibus (after Zombies! Zombies! Zombies!). There are urban ghosts in Fritz Leiber's "Smoke Ghost" and rural ghosts in Arthur J. Burks's "The Ghosts of Steamboat Coulee"; physical ghosts in Perceval Landon's "Thurnley Abbey" and faux ghosts in Saki's "The Open Window"; funny ghosts in Oscar Wilde's "The Canterville Ghost" and deadly serious ghosts in Ramsey Campbell's "Just Behind You." The most disturbing ghosts among them the spurned lover in Rudyard Kipling's "The Phantom Rickshaw" and the neglected child in Ellen Glasgow's "The Shadowy Third" are those whose persisting affections after death have curdled into an unholy hold on the living. The contents emphasize the classic over the contemporary, and though there are a few notable omissions (J. Sheridan Le Fanu, Henry James), there's enough in this volume to please both dilettantes and devotees among ghost story readers.