The Mammoth Book of Modern Ghost Stories: Great Supernatural Tales of the Twentieth Century (The Mammoth Book)
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Over 25 short story masterpieces from writers such as Louis de Bernieres and Ian Rankin - modern literary tales to chill the blood.
This spine-chilling new anthology of 20th and 21st century tales by big name writers is in the best traditions of literary ghost stories. It is just a little over a hundred years ago that the most famous literary ghost story, The Turn of the Screw by Henry James, was published and in the intervening years a great many other distinguished writers have tried their hand at this popular genre - some basing their fictional tales on real supernatural experiences of their own.
first the hands!” A rush of figures set instantly towards a thicket where the underbrush stood densest. Skins, trailing flowers, bare waving arms and tossing hair swept past on a burst of perfume. It was as though the trees themselves sped by. And the torrent of voices shook the very air in answer: “The Fire! But first – the hands!” Across this roaring volume pierced then, once again, that wailing sound which seemed both human and nonhuman – the anguished cry as of some lonely wolf in
reverie by a sudden scream. He had at once run across the field, and found Selina sorely in need of him. Mr Batchel’s work of reconciliation had been there and then anticipated, and Bob had taken the girl home in a condition of great excitement to her mother. All this was explained, in breathless sentences, by Mr Broughton, by way of accounting for the fact that Selina was then lying down in “the room”. There was no reason why Mr Batchel should not see her, of course, and he went in. His
steward interrupted. “Sit down again and have one with me,” said the Patience player. “No, it isn’t a ghost. Our trouble is more depression than anything else.” “How interesting! Then it’s nothing any one can see?” “It’s – it’s nothing worse than a little depression. And the odd part is that there hasn’t been a death in the house since it was built – in 1863. The lawyer said so. That decided me – my good lady, rather – and he made me pay an extra thousand for it.” “How curious. Unusual, too!”
anyhow. When will you come back?” “Look here,” he began. “I don’t know your engagements, but I’ve no one to play with at Burry Mills. Never have. Why couldn’t you take a few days off and join me there? I warn you it will be rather dull. It’s a throat and gout place – baths, massage, electricity, and so forth. But the fourth and the seventh holes really take some doing.” “I’m for the game,” I answered valiantly, Heaven well knowing that I hated every stroke and word of it. “That’s the proper
about his imaginative soul in which poetry and logic seemed otherwise fairly balanced. Too weary for critical judgment to discern clear outlines, his mind, during these magical twilight walks, became the playground of opposing forces, some power of dreaming, it seems, too easily in the ascendant. The soul of ancient Rouen, stealing beside his footsteps in the dusk, put forth a shadowy hand and touched him. This shadowy spell he denied as far as in him lay, though the resistance offered by reason