I have mixed feelings when it comes to collections like this that include newer work, mostly because I find that usually there is not enough work included to be able to follow a writer’s evolution across time.
There’s no doubt that when I think of spooky stories, I think of Ray Bradbury. His narratives are referenced time and time again and have influenced countless writers in turn.
Any anthology usually ends up being a mixed bag in terms of content. There will be things you like and things you don’t. When a famous artist, writer, or illustrator that you admire is asked to select stories for an anthology it can be an extra special experience.
I’ve gleefully noticed that for the last two or three years there’s been an emphasis on the forgotten women writers of weird fiction. It soothes a sore spot in my child-self.
I saw the Oxford World’s Classics French Decadent Tales sitting on my local independent bookstore’s shelf and I got so excited. French Decadence was a movement that did so much to further the form of the short story in general, but it also has all of those dark stories to tell at twilight that I can’t get enough of.
The Penguin Book of Christmas Stories sticks to a formula that’s pretty hard to get wrong. They take a theme and collect a bunch of stories from classic authors to compose an anthology.
Alvin Schwartz’s Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark trilogy was one of my favourite sets of books when I was growing up. I especially loved books that presented stories and the folklore they were based on.
my local independent bookstore called to inform me that my copy of the British Library’s (Tales of the Weird Collection) Chill Tidings had arrived. That made a Christmas in July post impossible to resist.
It takes a very good writer to write the ordinary and make it seem exactly that: ordinary. Alice Munro is just such a writer. Her stories aren’t fantastical; instead, they are stories of people that could be your neighbour or one of your parents’ friends. This is a review of The Love of A Good Woman.
As much as I rarely buy newly published books, I make exceptions for curations of ghost stories and new printings of old, often forgotten work. This is a special Halloween review of Weird Women and Haunted Houses.