The thrill of being terrified is a trait peculiar to the human condition and the horror genre ensures there is always more to savour. By no means a modern phenomenon, this branch of fiction enjoys a rich tradition, and the skill involved in fostering fear makes it a highly respected craft among writers.
Three-quarter-bound in blocked cloth with a printed and spot-varnished front board
Set in Poliphilus
Frontispiece and 6 colour illustrations
9½˝ x 6¼˝
A timeless collection of classic horror
Olin’s manicured hands were clasped behind him now, and Mike saw that the little man’s face was as pale as cream. On his high, lineless forehead, drops of perspiration stood out.
From ‘1408’ by Stephen King
Curated exclusively for Folio by multi-award-winning British horror writer Ramsey Campbell, this new edition is a collection of superlative writing from the mid-19th century to the present day. The tales are presented chronologically, so the reader embarks upon a hair-raising journey through the evolution of the genre. This begins with ‘The Fall of the House of Usher’ – one of Poe’s most terrifying stories – in which a woman is entombed alive and returns to seek vengeance. British writer M. R. James’ ‘Count Magnus’ tells the chilling tale of a travel writer who becomes fascinated by a long-dead occultist, and H. P. Lovecraft writes of a man who takes lodging in the wrong part of town – a place that may not actually exist. Stories by Shirley Jackson, Thomas Ligotti and others lead us finally to Adam Nevill’s ‘Hippocampus’ – a hyper-real and ultimately gruesome story set on a lurching abandoned cruise liner.
The collection also includes ‘1408’, a chilling story penned by Stephen King. Originally written as a creative writing exercise demonstrating the classic ‘ghostly room at the inn’ premise, King pushed the boundaries of terror in his tale to such an extent that he decided to publish it. Appearing first in audio format, ‘1408’ later formed the basis of a film with the same name.
‘There is my wife’s body pressed flat between two pages, dwarfed and condensed by some unspeakable process.’
From ‘Flowers of the Sea’ by Reggie Oliver
A stunning noir production
‘Then one night as I listened at the door I heard the shrieking viol swell into a chaotic babel of sound.’
From ‘The Music of Erich Zann’ by H. P. Lovecraft
As well as being a master of the art of horror writing, Campbell is a huge fan. Drawing on an encyclopaedic knowledge of the genre, his introduction traces the history of horror fiction on both sides of the Atlantic through the work of writers and critics. The collection is illustrated by award-winning artist Corey Brickley whose work appears in the New Yorker, the Huffington Post and Vice magazine. Brickley’s disturbing and spine-chilling illustrations give form to the dark themes and trepidation that flow through the stories. Brickley also produced the binding portrait, which depicts a frenzied human face with part-skeletal features, set into a blood-red cloth binding.
Included in this collection
The Fall of the House of Usher (1839) Edgar Allan Poe
The Yellow Wallpaper (1892) Charlotte Perkins
Count Magnus (1904) M. R. James
The White People (1904) Arthur Machen
Ancient Lights (1912) Algernon Blackwood
The Music of Erich Zann (1922) H. P. Lovecraft
Smoke Ghost (1941) Fritz Leiber
Brenda (1954) Margaret St Clair
The Bus (1965) Shirley Jackson
Again (1981) Ramsey Campbell
Vastarien (1987) Thomas Ligotti
Call Home (1991) Dennis Etchison
1408 (2002) Stephen King
Flowers of the Sea (2011) Reggie Oliver
Hippocampus (2015) Adam Nevill
ABOUT RAMSEY CAMPBELL
‘A horror story may convey supernatural fear or psychological disquiet, gruesomeness or terror devoid of a physical cause. I hope to represent all these and more in this book.’
Ramsay Campbell, from the introduction
Ramsey Campbell is described as ‘Britain’s most respected living horror writer’ in the Oxford Companion to English Literature. Born in Liverpool in 1946, he has published over 30 novels, 15 short story collections and 5 novellas. Film adaptations have been made of several of his books and he has published numerous essays on horror and on cinema. Among his trophies are the Grand Master Award of the World Horror Convention, the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Horror Writers Association, the Living Legend Award of the International Horror Guild, and the World Fantasy Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2015 he was made an Honorary Fellow of Liverpool John Moores University for outstanding services to literature. His most recent books are a trilogy – The Searching Dead, Born to the Dark and The Way of the Worm.
ABOUT COREY BRICKLEY
Corey Brickley is a freelance illustrator and designer living and working in Philadelphia. He specialises in editorial illustration, using a mixture of 3D, texture and Wacom-based painting to create often surreal and graphic juxtapositions. His clients include the New Yorker, the New York Times, Pacific Standard, the Huffington Post, Buzzfeed and Vice magazine. Brickley has won awards from the Society of Illustrators, Communication Arts, 3x3 magazine and American Illustration.
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