Nightshade: 20th Century Ghost Stories

Nightshade: 20th Century Ghost Stories

by Robert Phillips
     
 

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As this expertly edited anthology shows, the genre of the ghost story attracts an unusual number of first-rate "realistic" fiction writers. What occasional ghost story writer Henry James called "the terror of the unusual," instead of bogeymen from around the campfire, haunts the outstanding stories collected here. Veteran anthologist Robert Philips again matches the… See more details below

Overview

As this expertly edited anthology shows, the genre of the ghost story attracts an unusual number of first-rate "realistic" fiction writers. What occasional ghost story writer Henry James called "the terror of the unusual," instead of bogeymen from around the campfire, haunts the outstanding stories collected here. Veteran anthologist Robert Philips again matches the great names of 20th century literature with spectral subject matter. Featured authors include Truman Capote, Isak Dinesen, Shirley Jackson, Henry James, Rudyard Kipling, Elizabeth Bowen, and Max Beerbohm, as well as contemporary writers such as Alison Lurie, Joyce Carol Oates, and Muriel Spark. Readers will also be surprised to find experiments in supernatural, psychological terror from Franz Kafka, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, William Trevor, and Edith Wharton.

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Author/editor Phillips jumps on the fin-de-si cle bandwagon with this offering of 27 paranormal tales. Created as a companion to his earlier collection, The Omnibus of 20th Century Ghost Stories (Carroll & Graf, 1991), this volume continues to display Phillips's high literary standards. Classics by Henry James, Rudyard Kipling, and Edith Wharton are included, as are stories like Elizabeth Bowen's "The Happy Autumn Fields," all considered to be among the authors' best writings. This collection has a broader scope than its predecessor, marked by the inclusion of noted world writers such as Isak Dinesen, Franz Kafka, and Gabriel Garc a M rquez, and the contemporary voices of Christopher Tilghman and Max Eberts. But for those who truly enjoy a good ghost story, the basis for this collection's intrigue will be the variety of specters--visible and invisible, symbolic and concrete--that are presented. A solid addition to most libraries.--Nancy McNicol, Hagaman Memorial Lib., East Haven, CT Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
This successor to Phillips's successful 1989 collection, The Triumph of the Night, likewise fulfills critic Edmund Wilson's prescription for an anthology offering "stories by really first-rate modern writers" that favor psychological nuance over Gothic paraphernalia. Its 27 selections generally serve said-purpose well, though many (by James, Kipling, Wharton, Dinesen, Crawford, et al.) are easily available elsewhere. Readers should, however, appreciate finding lesser-known stories by Gabriel García Márquez and Muriel Spark, among a number of gems. Others: Elizabeth Spencer's limpid, economical "Owl"; Joan Aiken's serenely loopy "Sonata for Harp & Bicycle"; and Christopher Tilghman's "A Gentle Rain," a moving analogue to his complex stories of family interrelationship and crisis. For such, this is a useful collection; but aficionados may find they already own nearly half of its contents.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780786706143
Publisher:
Avalon Publishing Group
Publication date:
03/31/1999
Series:
Pierre Chambrun Series
Pages:
470
Product dimensions:
6.32(w) x 9.32(h) x 1.59(d)

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