End of the world sci-fi tale borrows heavily from H.G. Wells' WOTW and In The Days of the Comet -- looks like fun !
Stevenson, Robert Louis
"Olalla" was a "shilling shocker" written for the Christmas season in 1885, just before the publication of Stevenson's Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. The nameless protagonist of this Gothic tale, a wounded soldier, goes to the Spanish countryside to recuperate. He finds himself enthralled by the beautiful Olalla, the daughter of his hostess, whose family conceals a terrible secret.
Ambrose Bierce (1842 - 1914), satirist, critic, poet, short story writer and journalist. His fiction showed a clean economical style often sprinkled with subtle cynical comments on human behaviour. Nothing is known of his death, as he went missing while an observer with Pancho Villa’s army in 1913/14.
Falkner, John Meade
The Lost Stradivarius (1895), by J. Meade Falkner, is a short novel of ghosts and the evil that can be invested in an object, in this case an extremely fine Stradivarius violin. After finding the violin of the title in a hidden compartment in his college rooms, the protagonist, a wealthy young heir, becomes increasingly secretive as well as obsessed by a particular piece of music, which seems to have the power to call up the ghost of its previous owner. Roaming from England to Italy, the story involves family love, lordly depravity, and the tragedy of obsession
Best known under the title "The Friends Of The Friends" and chosen under that title for his classic fantasy anthology "Black Water" by Alberto Manguel as one of the best ghost stories ever written, this "ghost" story (that is, if it is "a ghost story") is a profound psychological observation of a love transcending death - also a detailed exploration of the min of the woman who would rather have her love right here in life. Echoing "The Turn Of The Screw" in its treatment of the supernatural as psychological, it turns the tables by making the supernatural consummately "real" - at least in the mind of one who loves. To find out how, listen on.
Doyle, Arthur Conan, Sir
In this short novel of 1894, Conan Doyle describes a character with seemingly extraordinary powers. Are these powers occult or are they only in the minds of other people? There is no Sherlock Holmes to solve this mystery.
Doyle, Arthur Conan, Sir
Being a physiologist, Austin Gilroy is unconvinced that the occult is real. His friend Professor Wilson, however, is not only convinced that psychical powers are real, but eagerly desires that Gilroy should be persuaded. To this end, Wilson invites Austin to his house for a demonstration. The effect is that Austin, although still skeptical, now concedes that there is more in the matter than he at first believed. But when the psychic, Miss Penclosa, controls his actions to the point where he nearly murders his fiancee, Austin Gilroy doubts no longer.
De la Mare, Walter
A story of psychological horror, The Return explores ideas of identity, love, and alienation. Arthur grapples with the reactions of his family and community, and his own sanity, when he experiences a sudden and mysterious "transformation".
Alexandre Dumas weaves the compelling story of Siamese twins who are separated physically but never in spirit. When one of the brothers is murdered, the other leaves Corsica for Paris to avenge the killing. Dumas brings this thrilling tale to life with his fascinating descriptions of Italy and France and his powerful portrayal of the undying love of brother for brother.
Leon Hamar and his friends were out-of-work and starving in San Francisco after the firm they worked for went out of business. Leon acquired a strange book and some cash in a trade for his watch-chain, one of his last posessions. He hated books and had no intention of reading the thing, but of course did, and discovered that it told the tale of Atlantis and the society of sorcerers who inhabited it. It not only told the story, but also gave specific instructions for initiation into the black arts. The friends decided they had little to lose and perhaps much to gain, even survival, if they underwent the tests and initiation into the ancient Atlantean black arts. What followed was not, perhaps, what they expected.
Robert Hugh Benson
Following the death of his fiancée, Laurie Baxter becomes consumed by an obsession with the supernatural. Attempting to reach his deceased bride, he attends rituals and séances, delving ever deeper into the dark embrace of the occult. But instead of reconnecting with his lost love, Laurie is brought into contact with forces far more sinister.
Ainsworth, William Harrison
Book 1 - Ann Boleyn. The focus of the novels is on the events surrounding Henry VIII's replacing Catherine of Aragon with Anne Boleyn as his wife. During Henry's pursuit of Boleyn, the novel describes other couples, including the Earl of Surrey and Lady Elizabeth Fitzgerald, a match Henry does not support. However, some of the individuals oppose Henry and his desires for Boleyn, including Thomas Wyat who wants her for himself and Cardinal Wolsey, who uses his own daughter, Mabel Lyndwood, to lure Henry away from Boleyn. [...] Intertwined with the Court is the story of Herne the Hunter, a spirit of Windsor Forest. He is an evil force that seeks to take the souls of various individuals, and Henry tries to stop him, but is never able to do so.
John C. Hutcheson
This book intentionally veers in and out of the supernatural, as the title implies. The officers get more and more bewildered as they work out their position, and yet again encounter the same vessel going in an impossible direction. Having warned you of this, I must say that it is a well-written book about life aboard an ocean-going steamer at about the end of the nineteenth century.
The Ghost Breaker is a drama and haunted house horror complete with heroes, villains, and a Princess. The Ghost Breaker was originally a screenplay and would later be made a drama film directed by Cecil B. DeMille.
Le Fanu, Joseph Sheridan
J. Sheridan LeFanu's Gothic mystery novel is narrated by Richard Beckett, a young Englishman abroad in Napoleonic-era France. He falls instantly in love with a mysterious and imperiled Countess, whom he glimpses momentarily behind her black veil. In order to be near her, he takes a room in the Dragon Volant (the Flying Dragon), a haunted inn that has been the site of mysterious disappearances.
Francis Marion Crawford
The Wanderer is looking far and wide for the love of his life, Beatrice. Try as he may, he cannot find her again. Appealing to a witch might help, but instead of using her powers to help the lovers find one another again, Unorna keeps them apart as much as possible. Will there be a happy end?
Ambrose Bierce (1842 - 1914?), best known as journalist, satirist and short story writer. Cynical in outlook, economical in style; Bierce vanished while an observer with Pancho Villa's army.
Four grotesque short stories about murder within the family, seen through the gently innocent eyes of family members ... usually the murderer himself.
Bangs, John Kendrick
The Enchanted Typewriter is a collection of short stories by the American author John Kendrick Bangs, written in 1899 in the style that has become known as Bangsian fantasy. Bangs attributes many of the stories to the late (and invisible) James Boswell, who has become an editor for a newspaper in Hades, and who communicates with the author by means of an old typewriter. The fantasy stories in this book are part of the author's Hades series, named for the stories' setting.
Cory, Charles B.
This is a collection of weird tales inspired from the natural history expeditions of the author, an independently wealthy bird collector, Olympic golfer, writer of many books on birds of the world, and, as evidenced in these pages, a fine storyteller to boot.
Ingram, Eleanor M.
To get away from city life periodically, New Yorker Roger Locke purchases an abandoned farm house in rural Connecticut, and with the assistance of his cousin Phillida and her beau Ethan Vere, he sets about fixing up the place.
Immediately however, an unseen mysterious woman begins giving him warnings during nocturnal visits to leave the house at once. Soon he begins hearing strange ominous sounds emanating from the tiny lake at the back of the house coupled with a permeation of sickly odors. An evil presence then begins to visit him during the witching hours of the late night, challenging him to a battle of wits from which there can be only one victor.
Is his mysterious female visitor there to help and encourage him to flee from the house, or is she working in tandem with The Thing From the Lake?
A gripping, occasionally frightening tale, Ms. Ingram wastes no time in grabbing the reader into the story and manages to weave a tale that will leave the reader guessing at every turn of events.
The Drums of Jeopardy is a 1920 American novel by Harold MacGrath. The story was serialized by the The Saturday Evening Post beginning in January of 1920.
In 1922 the book was made into a Broadway play and the following year a motion picture. A second film version appeared in 1931.
It is said that a young Boris Karloff, who previously had a few uncredited film roles, chose his stage name for his first screen credit in 1920 from a Russian mad scientist character named "Boris Karlov" in this novel. The name "Boris Karlov" was used from MacGrath's book for the 1922 Broadway play, but by 1923 with actor Boris Karloff using the similar sounding variation, the film version renamed the character, played by Wallace Beery, "Gregor Karlov." In the 1931 film version, however, with Warner Oland playing the character, the mad scientist's name is restored to "Boris Karlov," less than a year before Frankenstein would make Boris Karloff a household word for generations. Ironically, Boris Karloff would play many mad scientists on screen, but never "Boris Karlov."
Fifteen ghost stories to hear around the Yule log. "It happened that I spent the last winter in a large country mansion, in the north of England, where we had a succession of visitors, and all manner of amusements—... In short, we began to tell ghost stories; and although some of the party professed an utter disbelief in apparitions, they proved to be as fertile as the believers in their contributions—relating something that had happened to themselves or their friends, as having undoubtedly occurred, or to all appearance, occurred—only, with the reservation, that it must certainly have been a dream. The substance of these conversations fills the following pages, and I have told the stories as nearly as possible in the words of the original narrators." ( Author's Preface and david wales)
This 2nd volume of the Marie Antoinette Romances continues the intrigues of "Balsamo, The Magician" and adds to them the schemes of philosophers and the stirrings of revolution. Balsamo (based on the real Count Alessandro di Cagliostro) carries on his occult tactics to weaponize the state secrets that he gained in the previous volume. A serious romance and illness takes root in the court of King Louis XV, convincing one of the leading philosophic minds of the era, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, that “the breath of heaven will blast an age and a monarchy.”
A group of guests, at an exclusive luxury hotel in Hampshire, are the witnesses of an illustration of occult powers, demonstrated by “the Mystery”, as Mrs. Jefferson named the beautiful stranger who one day appeared in the Turkish Baths of the hotel. The events that follow lead Mrs. Jefferson to question the wisdom of her interest in the occult.
Hichens, Robert Smythe
Can the soul of the dead come back to haunt the one who was responsible for its death? What would happen if the responsible one did not believe it could be so, and yet was in love with the returned soul? The Return of the Soul is a horror story of a man who is visited by the returning soul of a deceased, and who has some very perplexing issues to deal with upon that return.
Munn, Charles Clark
Along the coast of Maine are littered thousands of small islands. One such, named 'Pocket Island' by the locals was so called because of a pocket formed twice daily by the waning of the tides. The coast of Maine holds many secrets and legends, and Pocket Island was no exception.
Subtitled "A Story of Country Life in New England", this story holds such varied and fascinating glimpses into the lives of a few individuals, and is not limited to merely a story of ghosts, of war, of barn dances, friendship, tales of rum-runners, smugglers, and seafarers. Rather it is all of the above, and much more, all wrapped nicely around a story of love.
Is Pocket Island truly haunted by ghosts of the past? The story begins ca. 1824, and takes us through the U.S. Civil War and beyond.
Robert Louis Stevenson
A series of mysterious and increasingly alarming crimes are taking place across London. People are being injured, even murdered without mercy and without reason. And yet, the perpetrator cannot be found. The crimes happen overnight, but in the morning the murderer is gone "like breath upon a mirror". Mr Utterson (a lawyer), Dr Lanyon and Dr Jekyll each bring their insights to this sinister conundrum.
Robert Louis Stevenson's classic story of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde is brought to life with a cast of voices in this dramatic reading. Only 10 chapters long, tradition says that Stevenson wrote the novella in less than a week, yet the central idea of the duality of human nature continues to fascinate through the ages!
"The Great God Pan" is a novella written by Arthur Machen. A version of the story was published in the magazine Whirlwind in 1890, and Machen revised and extended it for its book publication (together with another story, "The Inmost Light") in 1894. On publication it was widely denounced by the press as degenerate and horrific because of its decadent style and sexual content, although it has since garnered a reputation as a classic of horror. Machen’s story was only one of many at the time to focus on Pan as a useful symbol for the power of nature and paganism. The title was taken from the poem "A Musical Instrument" published in 1862 by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, in which the first line of every stanza ends "... the great god Pan."(via Wikipedia)
"The Willows" is one of Algernon Blackwood's best known creepy stories. American horror author H.P. Lovecraft considered it to be the finest supernatural tale in English literature. He wrote in his treatise "Supernatural Horror in Literature", "Here art and restraint in narrative reach their very highest development, and an impression of lasting poignancy is produced without a single strained passage or a single false note." "The Willows" is an example of early modern horror and is connected within the literary tradition of weird fiction.
The plot of Là-Bas concerns the novelist Durtal, who is disgusted by the emptiness and vulgarity of the modern world. He seeks relief by turning to the study of the Middle Ages and begins to research the life of the notorious 15th-century child-murderer Gilles de Rais. Through his contacts in Paris (notably Dr. Johannes, modeled after Joseph-Antoine Boullan), Durtal finds out that Satanism is not simply a thing of the past but alive in turn of the century France. He embarks on an investigation of the occult underworld with the help of his lover Madame Chantelouve. The novel culminates with a description of a black mass. (Wikipedia)
Reader's note: This novel certainly reaches to the depths of depravity and blasphemy, and achieved some notoriety for doing so. A redeeming feature, if one is required, is that Durtal begins in this book a pilgrimage; like Dante's hero, he begins this in a horrible and God-forsaken place.
"A miraculous masterpiece" it seemed to Henry James, who wrote it. What actually happens in this most remarkable story (though at one level, it is quite clear - a ghost appears) must ever remain unresolved. Stalked by an alternative self in his childhood home, abandoned by him for more than thirty years, the narrator must find his hidden Hyde, incorporate all the violent possibility he represents into his all too impressionable psyche and still go on living. How? That is the question. Well, Cecilia de Noel has the answer.
Written in 1912 by a famous ghost hunter who was also an occult fantasy writer, this interesting book collects together folktales and traditions from across Europe, starting in the British Isles, through Spain, France, Belgium and Norway to Russia. The "scientific" accounts (including "How to Become a Werewolf") are embellished by anecdotes of the author's personal experiences with werewolves, ghosts and vampires.
From Chapter 1: It is an old belief that the souls of cataleptic and epileptic people, during the body's unconsciousness, adjourned temporarily to animals, and it is therefore only in keeping with such a view to suggest that on the deaths of such people their spirits take permanently the form of animals.
This is collection of uncanny stories complied and curated by Cyril Arthur Pearson. The stories are fine ghost and horror stories, with all the ingredients to make it work: night, ghosts, unexplained deaths, and locked rooms
William Hope Hodgson
The Ghost Pirates is a powerful account of a doomed and haunted ship on its last voyage, and of the terrible sea-devils (of quasi-human aspect, and perhaps the spirits of bygone buccaneers) that besiege it and finally drag it down to an unknown fate. With its command of maritime knowledge, and its clever selection of hints and incidents suggestive of latent horrors in nature, this book at times reaches enviable peaks of power.
Ralph Adams Cram
A collection of six ghostly tales by Ralph Adams Cram, ranging from the demonic to the deeply sad. Gruesome apparitions, oppressive atmosphere, and throughout it all, a profound appreciation for the haunting beauty of Europe through the eyes of an American architect. Includes The Dead Valley, a story singled out as "memorably potent" by H.P. Lovecraft.
Black spirits and white - Red spirits and gray - Mingle, mingle, mingle - Ye that mingle may.
Julian LeVallon, born and raised alone in the Jura Mountains, is referred to psychiatrist Dr. Edward Fillery for care in London. But is LeVallon merely a schizophrenic with a secondary personality, "N.H." (non-human), or is he really an Elemental Being, a "bright messenger" who brings, perhaps, a new age of human evolution? And if so, is the human race ready for a major step forward?
Charles Willing Beale
Do you think you understand ghosts? Now you will.
Paul Henley, seemingly summoned to a mysterious rural Virginia mansion from his home in New York, finds himself as a guest at a remote, dilapidated colonial house with a host and a hostess every bit as mysterious as the house itself. Might Dorothy, his hostess, somehow be implicated in the hideous crime which he came to know took place in the hidden depths of Guir House some years ago? He hardly thought so, she seemed so innocent. And yet ....
A charming collection of short stories, dealing with ghosts, magic, and other-worldly events that even the faint of heart will enjoy.
1. The Intoxicated Ghost - a woman tries to outsmart a ghost to save the family from financial ruin.
2. A Problem In Portraiture - can a man's portrait influence the man he becomes?
3. Knitters In The Sun - will a father's curse keep two lovers apart?
4. A Comedy In Crape - the death of the town playboy causes a dispute over who is entitled to be chief mourner
5. A Meeting Of The Psychical Club - who is the hooded stranger, and are his powers real?
6. Tim Calligan's Grave-Money - a poor man's final sacrifice
7. Miss Gaylord and Jenny - who will ultimately be George's bride, Alice or her alter-ego?
8. Dr. Polnitzski - a man in a no-win situation and his resolution
9. In The Virginia Room - a Southern woman visits a Confederate War Museum on the anniversary of her husband's death and meets a Northerner. Can she forgive?
Selma Lagerlöf was born in Vaermland, Sweden, in 1858 and enjoyed a long and very successful career as a writer, receiving the Nobel-Prize in Literature in 1909. She died in Vaermland in 1940. The Treasure (Herr Arnes penningar) is a fairly short Novel, both a Drama and a Ghost Story. Published in 1904 and the English translation in 1923. The story is set in Bohuslaen on the West coast of Sweden in the middle of the 16th Century. Herr Arne, the old Parson in Solberga and all his household are brutally murdered, and his great Treasure stolen. The only survivor is Elsalill, the orphaned foster daughter. On her lies the burden to find out the murderers. She wants revenge, but falls in love with one of the murderers, who she must betray. Another important figure in the story is Torarin an old Fish hawker, who takes in Elsalill in his house after the murders, and Torarin’s dog, Grim, and also Elsalill’s dead foster sister.
Mary Elizabeth Hawker
Cecilia de Noël is an original and cleverly told ghost story, published in 1891. The story is told, Rashomon-like, from six different viewpoints.
Chambers, Robert W.
Robert W. Chambers (1865-1933) studied art in Paris in the late 80's and early 90's, where his work was displayed at the Salon. However, shortly after returning to America, he decided to spend his time in writing. He became popular as the writer of a number of romantic novels, but is now best known as the author of "The King In Yellow". This is a collection of the first half of this work of short stories which have an eerie, other-worldly feel to it; but the stories in the second half are essentially love stories, strongly coloured by the author's life as an artist in France.
Only the first half of the collection of stories is presented here: the earlier stories are all coloured by the background presence of a play, "The King In Yellow" itself, which corrupts those who read it, and opens them to horrible experiences and to visions of a ghastly other world, lit by dark stars and distorted skies. This half of the collection is completed by a few very short pieces and two rather strange and beautiful stories of love and time, loneliness and death.
Edgar Allan Poe
Edgar Allan Poe has the ability to manipulate language so well that he could engage my imagination and get me terrified even though little was 'done' in the sense of horrible actions described. My imagination, under the power of his creepy words, conjured the atmosphere and did the rest by itself. In this recording I've chosen some of his stories that succeed so well in leaving lingering hair raising memories with me: The Telltale Heart; The Masque of the Red Death; The Black Cat; The Raven, the Casque of Amontillado and Berenice. I hope you enjoy listening to them as much as I did reading them.
Edgar Allan Poe
An eclectic, catholic even, collection from the exquisitely excellent tale-telling of Mr. Edgar Allan Poe. Hilarious and terrifying. Need I say more?
H. G. Wells
A mysterious, bandaged stranger arrives in the small English village of Iping - and chaos follows close behind. H.G. Wells' classic story of obsession, murder, and science run amok.
Considered a change agent in early Gothic romance; oft-referenced in later literary works or paid homage to by such authors as Jane Austen (influential novel ready by her heroine, Catherine Morland, in Northanger Abbey); Edgar Allen Poe (borrowed plot elements for the short story The Oval Portrait); and Sir Walter Scott. - In The Mysteries of Udolpho, one of the most famous and popular gothic novels of the eighteenth century, Ann Radcliffe took a new tack from her predecessors and portrayed her heroine's inner life, creating an atmosphere thick with fear, and providing a gripping plot that continues to thrill readers today. - The Mysteries of Udolpho, set in Europe in the year 1584, is the story of orphan Emily St. Aubert, who finds herself separated from the man she loves and confined within the medieval castle of her aunt's new husband, Montoni, after being forced to travel through France and Italy. Inside the castle, she must cope with an unwanted suitor, Montoni's threats, and the wild imaginings and terrors that threaten to overwhelm her. - The mysterious happenings in the story always have a natural and probable explanation because Radcliffe was a very rational person and did not believe in the supernatural. Radcliffe's strengths in writing were in describing scenery as well as suspense and terror. Many critics have called the work "dreamlike" and "suggestive of the cinematic technique of slow-motion."
A tale of horror in which a pleasant sojourn down the Danube tumbles terrifyingly awry as the veil between this world and an unfathomably weird dimension is inadvertently pierced by an innocent pair of vacationers, "The Willows", arguably Algernon Blackwood's seminal contribution to supernatural literature, has had a lasting influence on the field. No less a personage than H. P. Lovecraft describing it as "...the greatest weird tale ever written." A reading will reveal a clear influence to one familiar with Lovecraft's work. The masterful handling of mystery and suspense that build to a quite satisfyingly unnerving crescendo may be particularly noted by the discerning aficionado of the genre.
An entertaining selection of "modern" ghost stories selected "to include specimens of a few of the distinctive types of modern ghosts, as well as to show the art of individual stories."
Sure to please the love of the supernatural in all of us!
William Hope Hodgson
The Sun has gone out and the Earth is lit only by the glow of residual vulcanism. The last few millions of the human race are gathered together in a gigantic metal pyramid, nearly eight miles high – the Last Redoubt, under siege from unknown forces and Powers outside in the dark. These are held back by a Circle of Energy, known as the "air clog", powered from a subterranean energy source called the "Earth Current". For millennia, vast living shapes—the Watchers—have waited in the darkness near the pyramid. It is thought they are waiting for the inevitable time when the Circle's power finally weakens and dies. Other living things have been seen in the darkness beyond, some of unknown origins, and others that may once have been human.
To leave the protection of the Circle means almost certain death, or worse an ultimate destruction of the soul. As the story commences, the narrator establishes mind contact with an inhabitant of another, forgotten Lesser Redoubt. First one expedition sets off to succor the inhabitants of the Lesser Redoubt, whose own Earth Current has been exhausted, only to meet with disaster. After that the narrator sets off alone into the darkness to find the girl he has made contact with, knowing now that she is the reincarnation of his past love.
H. P. Lovecraft describes the novel as "one of the most potent pieces of macabre imagination ever written". Clark Ashton Smith wrote of it that "In all literature, there are few works so sheerly remarkable, so purely creative, as The Night Land.
Lord Arthur Savile's Crime and Other Stories is a collection of short semi-comic mystery stories. This collection exemplifies Wilde's sharp wit and dark humour. Stories in this collection includeLord Arthur Savile's Crime,The Canterville Ghost,The Sphinx Without a Secret, The Model Millionaire, and The Portrait Of Mr W H.
Byron, George Gordon, Lord
Manfred is a dramatic poem in three acts by Lord Byron, and possibly a self confessional work. A noble, Manfred, is haunted by the memory of some unspeakable crime. In seeking for forgetfulness and oblivion, he wanders between his castle and the mountains. He has several encounters with the people who try to assist him, as well as spirits that rule nature and human destiny. The poem explores themes of morality, religion, guilt and the human condition.