As the introduction confirms, this book particularly set out to collect the "short-short" or "compact" ghost story. Snagging the list of stories from this review (so glad not to have to type them all out!), I'll make notes on the ones that interested me most, that I'd read before, etc. Meanwhile when an author is particularly good you really do notice it, because of the brevity of the stories - to pull you in, quickly set and tell the tale, and then make you like or at least think about it - well, in the short length that's all the more impressive. Can read his short story online: The Beast with Five Fingers. Reading this, and looking up Swain, reminded me that I have a book of his stories (which I should reread) and that he was a friend of M. His marginal comments still give life to pages from which all other interest has faded, and he would have but a dull imagination who could sit in the chamber amidst these books without ever being carried back 180 years into the past, to the time when the newest of them left the printer's hands." The Burned House by Vincent O'Sullivan A sort of pre-vision-ish ghost story Clocks by Darrell Schweitzer Sad. Also still trying to figure out image of room in basement at the end. Braddon Coming Home by Nina Kiriki Hoffman Concert to Death by Paul Ernst The Considerate Hosts by Thorp McClusky Daddy by Steve Rasnic Tem I think you could put together an entire book on "ghosts that are way too creepy with children." Creepy in an uncomfortable way, also spouse abuse. In my brain I was expecting more deaths, which could mean I've been reading too many ghost stories and should maybe rest a bit. Date in the City Room by Talbot Johns Makes a nice one to read alongside the previous story Behind the Screen, to ponder differences/similarities. Have had Hearn recommended for ghost stories, haven't gotten around to reading what I found at Gutenberg and elsewhere. (Well, it's supposed to be a ghost story, so I have to add that, right?) Fancy That by J.N. Williamson Father Macclesfield's Tale by R.H. Benson The Furnished Room by O. (I'm a New Orleans history buff, so this kind of hops out at me.) Note appearance of words/sentences like "I've seen buck niggers working on the wharves with arms as big as my thighs, and knotted with muscles until they looked like limbs of an oak." Author, who also went by name of W. I think it's the only ghost story I've read with that setting. Interesting to read the bio of Stephens - now I need to track down their other coauthored story: "The Assault Upon Miracle Castle". The Grey Room by Stephen Grabinski Guarded by Mearle Prout Harmless Ghosts by Jessica Amanda Salmonson Harmless is a matter of opinion The Haunted Burglar by W.C. Morrow There's actually a real medical symptom in this story, sort of. Kharu Knows it All by Renier Wyers Revenge and a fake medium The Last of Squire Ennismore by Mrs. J.H. Riddell I'm left wondering who the dead and living folk from the shipwreck were - or at least where they were from. The Man on B-17 by Stephen Grendon Ghost story with train/railroad setting. Author gives us an explanation, which is annoying depending on whether you like the idea of the ghost more or the other spin. The Murderer's Violin by Erckmann-Chatrian Sometimes you can't tell whether the old fashioned feel to a story is because it is actually old or because the author has a wonderful way of making you feel that. And second, the story is nicely creepy with a good "not entirely sure what happened" sort of ending. And also this line at the end of the info about the author/story segment: "Astute fans of horror will also find some similarities between this story "The Mist" by Stephen King and the film, John Carpenter's The Fog, but any comparisons I will leave to the reader..." - and yes, I couldn't help but think of those other fog-related stories. Out of Copyright by Ramsey Campbell Completely delicious story about author's revenge, plural. You very much feel this is a revenge story written on behalf of all authors. The Readjustment by Mary Austin Actually it's the title of this that made me stop and ponder the story again. Shadows Cast Behind by Otto E.A. Schmidt Customs guard on a ship discovers a "who shot first" ghost story. Warner Munn The scenario of "child/children in ghost stories," if written in just the right way, has a high probability that I will become maudlin and tearful. Dammit, ghost story, stop that. Thankfully this entire story can be found online here - with the footnote: A quote from the Vulgate, 1 Samuel 28, v.15 - given in the King James Bible as: "Why hast thou disquieted me, to bring me up?". Prior to the story on the webpage containing The Stone Coffin is this note: "This neat little story, set in Magdalene College, Cambridge, is firmly in the tradition of M.R. James. The mystery of 'B's' identity remains unsolved, although it must have been known to M.R. James, for a proof copy of the story exists among his papers at King's College. Five other supernatural tales by the mysterious 'B' have been collected together and published under the title When the Door is Shut, and other ghost stories (Haunted Library, 1986). All of the 'B' stories can be found in the G&S Archive" Because of course you have to wonder who an author only known as B really is, right? R. James and James-esque ghost story research. Bierce always does this sort of story well. The Terrible Old Man by H.P. Lovecraft Multiple creepy details, like the jars that can somehow communicate. Prior It's not nice to steal from the dead/the church/ The True Story of Anthony Ffryar by Arthur Gray Not entirely sure why Ffryar is the one to have the incident happen to him - doesn't seem any more or less deserving of it. It's the horror of depression and not a ghost tale, and thus I don't see how it can be anything but deeply depressing to read. I'm also tired of reading this kind of story.
I've read two others - 100 Hair Raising Little Horror Stories and 100 Vicious Little Vampire Stories - and they've published others, such as 100 Menacing Little Murder Stories and 100 Wicked Little Witch Stories. Let's get the stinkers out of the way first. "The Coat" is menacing, "Mandolin" touching and endearing though it, like Wilde's story, doesn't have a ghost. Finally, "Summerland" is effective, due to its cynical tone toward séances and spiritualism, in a subtle and understated way, and implies (again, without coming out and stating it) the truth about where our souls go.
Much like the assumptuously titled 'The World's Greatest Ghost Stories' which most weren't, it had been planned to finish this one by Halloween (2017). Again, much like the previously reviewed compilation, I have reviewed some of the stories within (making this have reviews within a review). I did not list/favourite/review every single story. Smh. Also: decent story, but the use of the n-word could have been omitted and changed. I'm not sure how this is exactly a ghost story. Good story, but what is the main character's name? Decent ghost story. Also: The main character was 9 years old and her best friend was 10. A pointless story about a dead woman that wants a letter burned so she can rest forever, and you never even find out what's in the letter. Predictable and filled with unnecessary repetitive mentions of the main character being unable to unlock a door. Seemed like random events, some that were mere tricks of light, after the death of a man. Didn't really feel like a legit ghost story at all. Idk what the author was thinking when they decided to release this as a ghost story. I honestly got the idea that the man was overly obsessed and merely desperate to have some sort of success in finding the lady. "The Garret Of Madame LeMoyne." This story fell flat, much like how the author described Annette's telling of the history of the attic. Seems to me, despite the author's intention, that the husband got ideas from Annete's story on how to kill his wife. It failed as a creepy story, but succeeds as a comedy. Incredibly overwritten; far too much description, and near the ending, the story was borderline pedophilic.1/5. "Ghost Story" by Alan Brennert. This may may have been written during the use of illegal drugs because the story makes no sense whatsoever. Honestly, I didnt didn't get the impression that the main character was dealing with a haunting. Truly, the impression I got was that the main character was obsessed with a coincidence and the room he'd moved into. Had the main character not been a Nazi sympathizer, I was just gonna leave this as one of the unmentioned ones since it's just a story of a conversation years after the only other character's mother's death. 1/5 "Her New Parents" by Steve Rasnic Tem. Good premise, went kind of nicely till a little over halfway through, and then the ending disappointed me. there wasn't enough back story, nor did very much happen. It just seemed like two random short scenes put together, and whatever else that isn't told might have made this a better story. Felt like this was only one side of a conversation; like whoever the second person was had their questions removed from the story, and only the answers remained. Hmm. This didn't seem like a ghost story at all. It seemed like a man who was silently desperate for some reason to go on, and heard something that wasn't there; he heard it because he wanted to hear it. As a story about changing one's mind, it was okay; but since this is supposed to be a ghost story, I can't even give it 2 stars. Anything that glorifies suicide gets a one star rating from me. This felt like the beginning of a story that wasn't completely submitted. . .'; they made me wonder if they were the same as dots placed in quotes to show that the whole quote isn't there; like parts of this story were omitted. Neither hated nor liked this story, but I mention it to say that this is not even a ghost story, so it's inclusion in this compilation is most odd. This is a religious story about a man who bargains his soul to the devil for one more season of life. It is mentioned in here that the main character felt he had the symptoms of dementia, and honestly, it makes me wonder if any of these women existed as ghosts, as odd as that sounds. I found myself thinking of 'My Side Of The Story' by Will Davis, and 'The Boys On The Rock" by John Fox, because there was very little punctuation. The main character perceives a windy storm as the presence of a ghost. This is not a ghost story. This is not a ghost story. This is not a ghost story. This is also not a very enjoyable story. This is not a ghost story, but a lost love story 1/5 "The Splendid Lie" by S. "The Theater Upstairs" by Manly Wade Wellman. "The Tree-Man Ghost" by Percy B. ?? Hmm. I'm starting to wonder if Dziemianowicz, Wrinberg, and Greenberg ran out of actual ghost stories at some point while compiling, or just wanted better stories than the actual ghost stories they were sorting, and added some stories even if they weren't paranormal; because this isn't paranormal. (Ten times better than his 'Black Gold' story. "The Ghost In All The Rooms" by Daniel Defoe. A story of poetic justice, sort of. Much like the other ghost story compilation mentioned above, I'm giving this a two star rating. I wish I could give it more stars because of my list of favourites, but (again) much like the other one, there was a pedophilic story in it.
It still delivers on the ghost stories though.
Derleth A stepmother commits a crime and is haunted by it to death. L. Raisor A haunting phone call pierces the night that connects this world to the next. "The Night Wire" by H.
Got this book to read Nina's story but I'll pick out some more. I have a hard time with old dialect so I often stick to stories from 1970+ unless something convinces me to break that rule like a good recommendation or a familiar name. The ghost was her 9 year old self.
I am a fan of the short story and definitely of the grim or scary ones - and this collection is really, really quite good.