I primarily asked for books this past birthday and Christmas, and I received quite a few of the ones I requested. Today I thought I’d share some of them with you as many of them will likely be featured here at Horror Delve in the future. Some may not receive full reviews but will have a selection of their stories show up in a list or two throughout the year.

THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF VICTORIAN CHRISTMAS GHOST STORIES VOLUMES 1 (edited by Tara Moore) and 2 (edited by Allen Grove): I’m always excited to add more Christmas horror story collections to my bookshelves. These will certainly help fill out Horror Delve’s annual list of suggested Christmas horror stories for years to come.

THE VALANCOURT BOOK OF HORROR STORIES VOLUME 2 edited by James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle: Sticking with the Valancourt books, I also received the second volume of their un-themed horror stories. Assembled within are 14 chillers from some of my favorite authors, including R. Chetwynd-Hayes and Basil Copper.

GATEWAYS TO ABOMINATION by Matthew M. Bartlett: I’ve heard such great things about Bartlett’s stories from people who’s opinion I trust (David T. Wilbanks for one) that I decided to give him a try. I’m looking forward to delving into this new voice (to me, at least) in the world of weird horror.

THE BOOKING by Ramsey Campbell: I’m always excited to read anything by Ramsey Campbell. There’s a reason he’s my favorite writer of all time. Whenever I sit down with a novel, short story, or whatever by him, I know I’ve signed myself up for a masterclass in unsettling terror.

THE HYDE HOTEL edited by James Everington and Dan Hogarth: I love anthologies, and this one’s theme is especially enticing to me. All the stories take place in the non-descript Hyde Hotel where things are never as they seem and countless horrors lurk in the shadows to surprise the unsuspecting travelers who make the mistake of checking in. I’ve read a few stories from it already, and so far it’s living up to my expectations.

IMPOSTER SYNDROME edited by James Everington and Dan Hogarth: Another anthology of stories assembled by James Everington and Dan Hogarth, this one exploring the theme of doppelgängers who stalk the people they’ve duplicated. I’ve always enjoyed these sorts of stories, so this should be a real treat.

THE CHILDREN OF GLA’AKI edited by Brian M. Simmons and Glynn Owen Barrass: This anthology is a tribute to Ramsey Campbell’s Great Old One, Gla’aki. Gla’aki originally appeared in Campbell’s excellent short story “The Inhabitant of the Lake” in 1964. It’s long been a favorite of mine, and it contains enough intriguing elements to support plenty of further explorations. There’s the derelict cabins by the lake, the obscure collection of cryptic books, the disturbed dreams those who stay nearby experience, and of course Gla’aki himself to name a few. I’ve read a few of the stories from this book and found them to be quite excellent. There’s even a tale by Willie Meikle that pits William Hope Hodgson’s occult detective Carniki against Gla’aki that’s superb fun.’aki

HORROR LITERATURE: A CORE COLLECTION AND REFERENCE GUIDE edited by Marshall B. Tymm, and HORROR LITERATURE: A READER’S GUIDE edited by Neil Barron: While these reference books might be a bit dated, coming out in 1981 and 1990 respectively, they’re filled with information about horror novels and short stories which should help give me some insight into material that may be covered here. At the very least, they should help me zero in on some things I want to try and track down to add to my own collection.

Article by Matt Cowan

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