Yes, this book, along with the Usborne Guide were the Two Towers of my literary macabre education. Being born in the mid 80s, I obviously missed out on its publication, but I got my copy at a car boot sale at an abandoned WW2 era airfield in 1993. My brother had, unbidden, got me the Usborne VW&D guide from a library clearance for 35p a few months previous, and with a set of Horror Top Trump cards handed down from an uncle, I was set up as a serious scholar of the fantastique for life.Back to the Hamlyn, it had for me, the definitive narrative to the Croglin Vampire and the best illustration as well. Years afterwards, I would read other renditions of the tale and think "No, it didn't happen like that.."I loved all the 70s sideswept haircuts.Mucho appreciation to poor Roy, his eyeless visage is my favourite illustration therein.And what about those Harry Clarke illustrations that were reprinted in the Poe chapter?That was my first exposure to them, I came across other ones in another tome but cant remember what one it was. I've just purchased two Goya paintings, one of Saturn devouring his children, the other of the Colussus of War (first seen by me in Into The Unknown)but will now attempt to hunt down some of Clarke's Poe illustrations for my Chamber Of The Uncanny And Clammy...ST.CLAIRE
Nice podcast on a fine book. These books are one of my guilty pleasures and I'm only missing the Mysteries book in the series but I'm sure I'll locate a decent copy soon. I agree that one of the strengths of these books is Farson not speaking down to the young reader. I must say, I still enjoy the warm feeling these books give me some 35 years after I first read them. It's like sitting down with an old pal from school. My daughter is slightly too young to get the best from them but we've got that to look forward to in the future. As far as I can see, there's nothing like them produced these days.
Post a Comment