Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Some New Publications

I've just posted about three new releases from my Nodens Books imprint (for full descriptions see here).  Two of them are of particular interest to readers of Wormwood and Wormwoodiana.

The first is an expanded collection of my own Late Reviews, from Wormwood and other sources, plus newly written ones. 

Late Reviews, by Douglas A. Anderson
Hardcover edition ($35.00), sold only directly via Lulu, at this link.
Trade paperback edition ($25.00) sold via Amazon (and European affiliates) ISBN 9781987512564. Amazon.com at this link. Amazon.co.uk at this link.
Trade paperback edition ($16.00) sold via Lulu, at this link.
Kindle edition, sold via Amazon and affiliates.


And the other is the first reprint in 115 years of Ferelith by Lord Kilmarnock, with a new introduction by Mark Valentine.  

Ferelith, by Lord Kilmarnock. Introduction by Mark Valentine.
Trade paperback edition ($16.00) sold via Amazon (and European affiliates) ISBN 9781987736700. Amazon.com at this link. Amazon.co.uk at this link.
Trade paperback edition ($16.00) sold via Lulu, at this link.
Kindle edition, sold via Amazon and affiliates

More new titles are currently wending their way through publication channels.

Monday, April 23, 2018

Wormwood 30


Wormwood 30 has just been announced, with essays on Algernon Blackwood, Ambrose Bierce, Caitlin Kiernan, Margaret Benson, Ada Goodrich Freer, George Macdonald and Sara Coleridge.

From the editorial:

In this issue, William Charlton explores books by Sara Coleridge and George MacDonald that each deal in the world of fantasy, dream and fairy tale, and have certain apparent similarities: however, he argues that their differences are more significant. He also suggests that many of the dimensions they explore have still not been pursued by later writers, and there remains a rich seam within fairy lore yet to be mined.

Fairy lore is also present in Joseph Hinton’s study of Margaret Benson, a neglected member of the family that gave us the ghost story writers A.C., E.F. and R.H. Benson. Though she only wrote one volume of mystical and supernatural stories, these are vivid and unusual explorations of ancient Egypt interpreted through the motifs and symbols of fairy tales. She was one of the first women archaeologists in Egypt, and fused her experience of the country and its antiquities with an individual spirituality to create fervent prose evocations of the unearthly.

There is a fairy tale element also in Algernon Blackwood’s novel The Fruit Stoners, which has rarely received the attention given even to the better-known of his longer works, such as The Centaur. It has often been seen as an allegorical tale for children. But, argues Rebekah Memel Brown, it ought to be considered as one of his major works, a thoughtful meditation, informed by developments in science, on the nature of time and space.

Accounts of Hebridean folklore, including fairy tales, appeared under the name of Ada Goodrich Freer, who also compiled a volume of supernatural stories. But, as Peter Bell relates, a great deal of the folklore work was taken from another, more diffident, hand, who has only fairly recently been given due credit.

There are very modern and bizarre fairy forms among the altered humans of Caitlin R Kiernan’s work but, as James Goho describes, they are far from the genteel Victorian world of the children’s play-book. Her neo-Decadent fiction often involves extreme art and gruesome futuristic ‘atrocity exhibitions’, and echoes the original Decadents’ rejection of their society and its shams by depicting the outré outcasts of today. But, just as Decadence was one of the sources of Modernism, so Kiernan’s work is also characterised by experimentation with form and style.

Few have ever written more sardonic and macabre stories than Ambrose Bierce, but as Tim Foley recounts, he once led a fairly carefree life on a long visit to England, which afterwards seemed to him a charmed time. If his restless spirit haunts anywhere, it emerges that it may not be Mexico, where he disappeared, but leafy Leamington Spa.

We also offer our regular columns by Doug Anderson, John Howard and Reggie Oliver reviewing past and present fiction in the field of the fantastic.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

M. R. James Conference, 26th-27th September 2018, York


In the Autumn of 1898 M. R. James visited York, during the course of which he took copious notes on the painted glass of twelve of the city's mediaeval parish churches. One hundred and twenty years later, The Friends of Count Magnus are marking this event by holding a two-day conference in the city examining the connections between James's professional scholarly work and his ghost stories.

The event will include Robert Lloyd Parry performing 'A Pleasing Terror', two ghost stories by M R James; a presentation by Whitby actor and raconteur Patrick Smith; a walking tour of York taking in some of the churches James visited; talks by Gail-Nina Anderson, Peter Bell, Paul Chapman, Helen Grant, Terry Hale, Darryl Jones, John Reppion and Mark Valentine; panel discussions; together with an opportunity to meet many other Jamesian enthusiasts.

Full details and booking information may be found by visiting The Friends of Count Magnus.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Supernatural Tales 37


Supernatural Tales 37 has just been announced. It includes stories by Helen Grant, C.M. Muller, Jeremy Schliewe, Chloe N. Clark, and Mark Valentine, and reviews by the editor, David Longhorn.

"The Forwarding Agent", my story in this issue, is about a man who collects tickets as a hobby, industrial estates, a Roman mask and a figure on a motorway bridge. What discerning reader could ask for more?

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Ann Lee - The Manchester Messiah by Roger Dobson


“A history of the Shakers will be a curious book”
– Nathaniel Hawthorne

The only known publication of Roger’s St John Press, Ann Lee: The Manchester Messiah is a 1987 illustrated booklet celebrating the 250th anniversary of an extraordinary and mesmeric prophetess, the founder of the Shakers. A drama of passion and courage, triumph and tragedy, it is one of the strangest stories ever told. Roger's account traces the history of Ann Lee from humble beginnings in Manchester to the leadership of a movement that still survives today.

An unexpected find in the attic uncovered a few copies [now sold out].