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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
Alone with the Horrors is a hair-raising compilation covering three decades of the best short fiction from Ramsey Campbell, whom Clive Barker has called the "master of dark fantasy." The collection -- which includes works ranging from 1961 through 1991 -- is pure, nightmare-inducing horror at its very best.
Noteworthy selections include World Fantasy Award–winning stories "The Chimney" and ""Mackintosh Willy," disturbingly intimate tales that revolve around timid characters at that vulnerable age between childhood and maturity. "The Chimney" chronicles one boy's struggle to overcome deep-seated fears of youth. The 12-year old, sheltered by an overprotective mother, finally realizes that Father Christmas doesn't exist. But if the jolly old man with the red coat and white beard is imaginary, what's living in the chimney in his bedroom? "Mackintosh Willy" is an eerie story about a demented alcoholic who lives in a park shelter. The man, who terrorized local children once the sun went down, is found dead one day with pennies placed on his eyelids. His murder goes unsolved -- but not unavenged. Another notable work is "The Tower from Yuggoth," a timeless tale about one man's descent into madness as he searches for keys to unlock a gateway to the netherworld.
Reminiscent of works by classic horror masters H. P. Lovecraft and Algernon Blackwood, Campbell's collection of 37 stories is cerebral, intense and undeniably terrifying. Additionally, the author's candid and highly revealing introduction make this an absolute must-read for aficionados of the horror genre. Batteries -- for the flashlight to check under the bed and in the closet -- not included. Paul Goat Allen