R. Chetwynd-Hayes (ed.) - The 13th Fontana Book Of Great Ghost Stories (1977)
Introduction - R. Chetwynd-Hayes
Dennis Wheatley - The Case Of The Long-Dead Lord Charles Thornton - The Lonely Apparition F. Marion Crawford - The Dead Smile Daphne Froome - Crimson Lake Ken Alden - Old Shadows Rosemary Timperley - The Man With The Flute W. Somerset Maugham - The Taipan Anonymous - Not Yet Solved Terry Tapp - Into The Mad, Mad World Guy De Maupassant - The Hostelry Roger Malisson - Disappearance Roger F. Dunkley - The Ghost Machine Oliver Onions - The Rocker Margaret Chilvers Cooper - The Cape-Cod Poltergeist Duncan Forbes - 28 Tower Street Mrs. Claxton - The Grey Cottage Pamela Cleaver - Mother Love R. Chetwynd-Hayes - My Dear Wife
Dennis Wheatley - The Case Of The Long-Dead Lord: The affable, globetrotting Psychic Detective Neils Orsen and his assistant, Bruce Hemmingway visit Stuart Castle where the dastardly noble has been tormenting young Fiona Clyde.
Charles Thornton - The Lonely Apparition: Wandsworth. the spectre of an old woman trudges aimlessly across South West London until the day she notices a small group making their way into a basement flat where a fraudulent medium does his business. The sound of screeching brakes and a bus skids off the road and through the window, killing the owner and the driver who goes through the windshield. Even so, a happy ending.
Terry Tapp - Into The Mad, Mad World: Rachel Bowden sits before her nemesis Dr. Regan and his two colleagues, the panel who will decide if she's fit to be released from the asylum. She was admitted several years ago after her husband only just managed to prevent her from smothering their little boy with a pillow. How did it come to this? In the days leading up to the incident she'd been tormented by the face of an old man formed in a cloud of smoke who boasted that he would possess three year old Mark. When she saw his fiery eyes glaring from her son's face she knew he'd been as bad as his word.
W. Somerset Maugham - The Taipan: He’s the head of a major China-based company. Today he walks past the cemetery, congratulating himself that he has not gone the way of his fellows who made a fortune and drank themselves to death before they reached thirty. Presently he encounters three Chinese digging a fresh grave. But surely if anyone had died recently he’d have been informed …?
Roger Malisson - Disappearance:The Stanley family move into Shrapton Hall and from the first little Jane sees and converses with the ghosts of the 18th century Lady Mary Rigby and her daughters. Her mother, Elizabeth, convinces herself that Jane and her sister Sophie are merely indulging in a Brontesque fantasy … until Jane disappears during a game of hide and seek.
Back in time, a strange little girl in bizarre attire is discovered by the servants at Shrapton Hall, while in the present Elizabeth locates her missing daughter’s grave in the local churchyard …
Daphne Froome - Crimson Lake: Rex and Owen Ainsworth of rock band Crimson Lake inherit the Banks Playhouse and prepare to stage their first gig. Unfortunately the late Mr. Banks' ghost is skulking around and he's no lover of pop music. It makes for a memorable reopening night.
Duncan Forbes - 28 Tower Street: Oxford. Students Simon, Lizzy and the narrator share a flat at the due for demolition 28 Tower Street. Lizzy is uneasy about the place from the first, a situation not helped by an episode on the day they move in when she's surprised by an unseen somebody whistling a Mozart concerto as they climb the staircase. The boys nickname their ghost 'Eileen' after the woman who used to run a hairdressing salon from the premises, and the narrator points out that skeletons have just been found by workmen digging a trench outside in the street. Simon mischievously rigs his tape recorder to give the couple a scare (resulting in Lizzy moving back to her bedsit) but he's insistent that he wasn't behind the original incident. The lads decide to keep all night vigil with each of them taking in turns to keep watch for the spectre ...
Ken Alden - Old Shadows: Grange Park is reputedly haunted by Nann, a black and white collie whose owner, a little boy, died when he fell from an Oak tree. The spectral dog saves the narrator’s sister when she falls in the pond, but its not all good news. There’s a second spook, “the vision of a middle-aged man who stood in the Nursery doorway and silently screamed” - a phantom from the future.
Roger F. Dunkley - The Ghost Machine:To test his magnificent invention, Professor Hamner advertises for a somebody who needs help to committing suicide. Unfortunately for him, the solitary response comes from Mr. Jeremiah Puddle, a desperate fellow who has already made several and varied attempts on his own life, each of them ending in abject failure. Puddle is trying to get away from his fearsome battleaxe of a wife. By the end of the story, so is the spectre-seeking Prof …
R. Chetwynd-Hayes - My Dear Wife:Henry’s eye for young women he’s not especially fond of drives wife Georgina to despair, not least because his main motivation for straying is the delight he takes in her torment. It doesn’t matter how many times she leaves him for the last time, they both know she’ll return. As will his latest plaything, Sheila. As will every woman who falls for him.
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.