This is a book with a TOC to be proud of:
Elizabeth Gaskell: The Old Nurse’s Story
Fitz-James O’Brien: What Was It?
Edward Bulwer Lytton: The Haunted and the Haunters: or, The House and the Brain
Mary Elizabeth Braddon: The Cold Embrace
Amelia B. Edwards: The North Mail
Charles Dickens: No. 1 Branch Line: The Signal-man
Sheridan Le Fanu: Green Tea
Harriet Beecher Stowe: The Ghost in the Cap’n Brown House
Robert Louis Stevenson: Thrawn Janet
Margaret Oliphant: The Open Door
Rudyard Kipling: At the End of the Passage
Lafcadio Hearn: Nightmare-Touch
W. W. Jacobs: The Monkey’s Paw
Mary Wilkins Freeman: The Wind in the Rose-Bush
M. R. James: ‘Oh, Whistle, and I’ll Come to You, My Lad’
Ambrose Bierce: The Moonlit Road
Henry James: The Jolly Corner
Mary Austin: The Readjustment
Edith Wharton: Afterward
I generally pay little attention to the author’s gender, but in this collection, I thought, many of the stories written by the male authors had a faint pomposity, which lent the upper hand to the female writers who just got on with the job of telling a creepy tale. Hence my personal favourites were The Ghost in the Cap’n Brown House by Harriet Beecher Stowe, The Open Door by Margaret Oliphant, and The Wind in the Rose-Bush by Mary Wilkins Freeman. All three stories were chilling and concise.
Overall, this is an excellent collection of classic ghost stories written in the Victorian era. One for lovers of the supernatural tale and also a perfect introduction to the genre.
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