Peter Haining (ed.) - Dr. Caligari's Black Book (W. H. Allen, 1968)
"For here are tales from the world of Dr. Caligari: mysterious sideshows, freaks and monsters, seances, macabre plays, and all manner of terrors lurking in the shadows."
Introduction - Peter Haining
S. L. Dennis - The Second Awakening Of A Magician Ray Bradbury - The Jar Lady Eleanor Smith - Satan's Circus Agatha Christie - The Last Seance August Derleth - Mrs. Elting Plays Her part Anthony Gittens - The Third Performance A. M. Burrage - The Waxwork Robert Bloch - The Sorcerer's Apprentice Marcel Ayme - The Dwarf J. B. Priestly - The Demon King Hazel Heald - The Horror In The museum H. R. Wakefield - Farewell Performance Barry Pain - The End Of A Show
J. B. Priestly - The Demon King: The company assembled for Mr. Tom Burt's boxing day premier of Jack And Jill at the Theatre Royal, Bruddersford are a motley crew, the solitary performer with any kind of track record being their Demon King, Kirk Ireton, whose talent has been somewhat diminished by his capacity for alcohol. When he disappears after a session in The Cooper's Arms mere hours before the pantomime it looks as though even the dubious talents of the Happy Yorkshire Lasses won't salvage this turkey. But come the eleventh hour and Ireton - or, at least, somebody dressed in a most impressive Devil's costume - shows up. The troupe go on to play a blinder.
Robert Bloch - The Sorcerer's Apprentice: Hugo, a simple-minded, squinty-eyed hunchback, runs away from the orphanage when he learns that he's about to be committed to the local asylum. Famous stage magician the Great Sadini finds him starving to death out back of the theatre and takes him on as his props man. All is well until the kindly Sadini's wife and onstage assistant Isobel embarks on an affair with a handsome crooner. When Hugo catches them at it, Isobel persuades him that Sadini is the Devil and all his supposed 'tricks' - including the neat one when he power-saws her in half - are real. She's only with him because he has her under a spell. But if Hugo were to kill him ....
H. R. Wakefield - Farewell Performance: Theatrical agent Jack Granger is concerned that his star turn, ventriloquist Gustave Nimbo, is to play the Wolverham Empire within hours of learning of his wife's death. His fears are well founded: Nimbo goes into meltdown mid-act as his dummy, Nobby, denounces him as a murderer. Also features a brief turn by blue comic 'Ruddles Rowlock, the Ace of Chumps'.
Anthony Gittins - The Third Performance: Feodor Sarbecoff's masterpiece, Symphonic De La Morgue Souterraine, has been performed to great acclaim in Paris and Berlin, but on each occasion the harpist has dropped dead during his solo. Now Paul Duvivier, "perhaps the most celebrated harpist then living", is determined to stage the Opera a third time despite the composer's insistence that it is cursed.
A. M. Burrage - The Waxworks: Raymond Hewson, a journalist down on his luck, decides, for purposes of an article, to spend a night alone in the Murderers Den at the Waxworks. Among the replicas of such charmers as Crippen is a particular model, that of Dr. Bourdette, 'The French Jack The Ripper', which really disturbs him, and as the night drags on he can't help but be anxious that the cut throat was never captured ...
Lady Eleanor Smith - Satan's Circus: The famous, ever-travelling Circus Brandt has a terrible name among those who've toured with them and this entirely due to the antics of the saturnine Carl Brandt and his Morticia Adamms of a wife, Lya. Hired hand Anatole, a deserter from the Foreign Legion, learns too late that you cross the latter at your peril when she gives him the choice of either filling in for the absconded lion-tamer ot being handed in to the authorities. No animals react well to Lya passing near them and at that night's performance she deliberately causes Anatole's gory death. Hints of vampirism in the pay-off.
Barry Pain - The End Of The Show: A quack doctor, hitched to a travelling show, bemoans the fact that in all his life "I never did anyone a kindness, not even myself." He gets a shot at redemption when he answers the cry of an abused circus freak who wants to end it all.
NoteThe Nel edition - 1969 - drops several of these stories and replaces them with works by Manly Wade Wellman, Louis Golding, Basil Copper and Charles Birkin. The Derleth selection is also different:
Dr. Caligari's Black Book (NEL, 1969)
Amber Print - Basil Copper The Second Awakening Of A Magician - S L Dennis The Haunted Cinema - Louis Golding The Jar - Ray Bradbury The Theatre Upstairs - Manly Wade Wellman The Last Seance - Agatha Christie Headlines For Tod Shayne - August Derleth The Sorceror's Apprentice - Robert Bloch The Harlem Horror - Charles Lloyd The End Of A Show - Barry Pain
Blurb: In the chamber of horrors lurk the un-dead, the unnameable and the unspeakable. Assembled in the great tradition of the evil Dr. Caligari are tales by Ray Bradbury, Robert Bloch, August Derleth, Agatha Christie.
From the first, I set myself against "literature"; the story was the thing, and no amount of style could persuade me to select a story that lacked genuine, unadulterated horror. For those who wanted something high-brow there was plenty. - Christine Campbell Thomson
Post by nathanieltapley on Dec 18, 2009 16:19:24 GMT
I have a copy of the Allen edition, which, as I flick though it, I notice I borrowed from my school library in 1988, and forgot to ever return. It says inside the cover "You may keep me for a week, but please look after me."
I obeyed the second half of that imprecation.
(Actually, I shall choose to believe that I bought it when the school were ditching a bunch of their old inventory. Yes, that must be it.)
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