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Foreword: Mary Shelley Horror Stories • essay by Fiona Sampson Introduction to the 1831 Edition (Frankenstein) • essay by Mary Shelley (variant of Introduction (Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus) 1831) Original Preface to the 1818 Edition (Frankenstein) • essay by Percy Bysshe Shelley (variant of Preface (Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus) 1818) [as by uncredited Foreword: Mary Shelley Horror Stories • essay by Fiona Sampson Introduction to the 1831 Edition (Frankenstein) • essay by Mary Shelley (variant of Introduction (Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus) 1831) Original Preface to the 1818 Edition (Frankenstein) • essay by Percy Bysshe Shelley (variant of Preface (Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus) 1818) [as by uncredited] A Fragment • short story by Lord George Gordon Byron (variant of Fragment of a Novel 1819) [as by George Gordon, Lord Byron] The Vampyre • [Lord Ruthven] • (1970) • novelette by Dr. John William Polidori (variant of The Vampyre: A Tale 1819) [as by John Polidori] Christabel • (1816) • poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge Prefaces to Tales of the Dead • essay by Sarah Elizabeth Utterson (variant of Preface (Tales of the Dead) 1813) The Family Portraits • novelette by A. Apel (trans. of Die Bilder der Ahnen 1805) [as by Johann August Apel] The Fated Hour • novelette by F. Laun (trans. of Die Verwandtschaft mit der Geisterwelt 1810) [as by Friedrich Laun] The Death's Head • novelette by F. Laun (trans. of Der Todtenkopf 1811) [as by Friedrich Laun] The Spectre-Barber • novella by Johann Karl August Musäus (trans. of Stumme Liebe 1782)


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Foreword: Mary Shelley Horror Stories • essay by Fiona Sampson Introduction to the 1831 Edition (Frankenstein) • essay by Mary Shelley (variant of Introduction (Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus) 1831) Original Preface to the 1818 Edition (Frankenstein) • essay by Percy Bysshe Shelley (variant of Preface (Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus) 1818) [as by uncredited Foreword: Mary Shelley Horror Stories • essay by Fiona Sampson Introduction to the 1831 Edition (Frankenstein) • essay by Mary Shelley (variant of Introduction (Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus) 1831) Original Preface to the 1818 Edition (Frankenstein) • essay by Percy Bysshe Shelley (variant of Preface (Frankenstein, or, The Modern Prometheus) 1818) [as by uncredited] A Fragment • short story by Lord George Gordon Byron (variant of Fragment of a Novel 1819) [as by George Gordon, Lord Byron] The Vampyre • [Lord Ruthven] • (1970) • novelette by Dr. John William Polidori (variant of The Vampyre: A Tale 1819) [as by John Polidori] Christabel • (1816) • poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge Prefaces to Tales of the Dead • essay by Sarah Elizabeth Utterson (variant of Preface (Tales of the Dead) 1813) The Family Portraits • novelette by A. Apel (trans. of Die Bilder der Ahnen 1805) [as by Johann August Apel] The Fated Hour • novelette by F. Laun (trans. of Die Verwandtschaft mit der Geisterwelt 1810) [as by Friedrich Laun] The Death's Head • novelette by F. Laun (trans. of Der Todtenkopf 1811) [as by Friedrich Laun] The Spectre-Barber • novella by Johann Karl August Musäus (trans. of Stumme Liebe 1782)

40 review for Mary Shelley Horror Stories

  1. 4 out of 5

    Andy Hickman

    MARY SHELLEY HORROR STORIES (GOTHIC FANTASY) The BEST anthology of Frankenstein-ish-related influences and legacy. I give this 20 out of 5. Thank you Flame Tree publishers for making this available. …… ***** ***** ***** ***** Section One – ‘The Birth of Frankenstein’ “Frankenstein” – ***** THE classic! (See my review of it) . “A Fragment” – Lord Byron *** Also known as "Fragment of a Novel" is an unfinished 1819 vampire horror story written by Lord Byron - one of the first in English to feature a vampire MARY SHELLEY HORROR STORIES (GOTHIC FANTASY) The BEST anthology of Frankenstein-ish-related influences and legacy. I give this 20 out of 5. Thank you Flame Tree publishers for making this available. …… ***** ***** ***** ***** Section One – ‘The Birth of Frankenstein’ “Frankenstein” – ***** THE classic! (See my review of it) . “A Fragment” – Lord Byron *** Also known as "Fragment of a Novel" is an unfinished 1819 vampire horror story written by Lord Byron - one of the first in English to feature a vampire theme. Definitely worth a read. Great characters that would have made a stunning full novel {I suspect Byron was a 4 with a 5 wing, on the Enneagram} . “The Vampyre” by John Polidori **** Fantastic tale. The genesis of Bram Stoker’s inspiration. “He thought, in fine, that the dreams of poets were the realities of life.” “Lord Ruthven in his carriage, and amidst the various wild and rich scenes of nature, was always the same: his eye spoke less than his lip; and though Aubrey was near the object of his curiosity, he obtained no greater gratification from it than the constant excitement of vainly wishing to break that mystery, which to his exalted imagination began to assume the appearance of something supernatural.” .. "Christabel" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge I am giving this classic a 5-star rating 1stly because Mary Shelley read it! 2ndly because it needs to be read more than once to get the nuances. Wonderfully paranormal. Great poetry. … “Tales of the Dead” (1813) - Various authors, translated by Sarah Elizabeth Utterson Translation of most of Fantasmagoriana (a collection of German ghost stories translated into French, which was read by Lord Byron, John William Polidori and Mary Shelley and inspired them to write the first modern vampire story, The Vampyre and Frankenstein respectively), with an additional story written by the translator. Contents: The Family Portraits The Fated Hour The Death's Head The Death-Bride The Storm The Spectre-Barber or, Dumb Love Intro: "It is generally believed that at this time of day no one puts any faith in ghosts and apparitions. Yet, on reflection, this opinion does not appear to me quite correct: for, without alluding to workmen in mines, and the inhabitants of mountainous countries,—the former of whom believe in spectres and hobgoblins presiding over concealed treasures, and the latter in apparitions and phantoms announcing either agreeable or unfortunate tidings,—may we not ask why amongst ourselves there are certain individuals who have a dread of passing through a church-yard after night-fall? Why others experience an involuntary shuddering at entering a church, or any other large uninhabited edifice, in the dark? And, in fine, why persons who are deservedly considered as possessing courage and good sense, dare not visit at night even places where they are certain of meeting with nothing they need dread from living beings? They are ever repeating, that the living are only to be dreaded; and yet fear night, because they believe, by tradition, that it is the time which phantoms choose for appearing to the inhabitants of the earth…" …. “The Family Portraits”, also known as Gruselkabinett 23 - Die Bilder der Ahnen, by Johann August Apel Wonderfully creepy tale of a forefather who is cursed and consequently so too are following generations. Surprisingly redemptive conclusion. I loved this story. ***** . “The Fated Hour”, also known as Gespensterbuch: [Bdch. 7], by Friedrich Laun Genuinely creepy! Spirit projection! Fantastic original gothic spook story ***** “Prepare yourselves for the strangest and most surprising events. … that the chill which my recital may produce be not increased by any exterior cause.” “… these phaenomena, which appear complaisantly renewed every day…” Complaisantly = willingness to please “.. I continued walking in the garden, as if intoxicated with the delicious vapours emitted from the flowers…” … “The Death's Head” by Friedrich Laun When a young ventriloquist uses the ‘skull’ (death’s head) of his father to perform a trick, well it all becomes just a little overwhelming for him and the pastor! Another redemptive ending by the blessing of the proposed marriage. **** … {{It is worth inseeting this review, although not in this ‘Mary Shelley Horror Stories’ anthology}} THE STORM by SARAH UTTERSON (from “Tales from the Dead”) This pioneering tale is wonderfully creepy. ”It is well for the human frame, that when assailed by circumstances too powerful to support, it seeks shelter in oblivion. The mind recoils from the horrors which it cannot meet, and is driven into insensibility.” “The very remembrance of what she had witnessed on that fatal night, hurried her into delirium, and she fell a victim to the force of recollection.” - 4 stars …. THE DEATH-BRIDE by Friedrich August Schulze When a supposed Italian marquis arrives to tell of the Death Bride at a party he stays with a Count who had twin daughters, Ida and Hildegarde (Hildegarde, only different from her sister by a strawberry birthmark, had died). This is a fantastic story about Hildegarde the Death-Bride! A must read for gothic-horror fans. Pivotal in the life of Mary Shelley. 5/5 stars The provenance path from the German source to the French and English translations is as follows: ‘Die Todtenbraut’ (1811) by Friedrich Schulze in Gespensterbuch → ‘La Morte Fiancée’ (1812) by Eyriès in Fantasmagoriana → ‘The Death-Bride’ (1813) by Utterson in Tales of the Dead Mary Shelley recalls the reading of ‘La Morte Fiancée’ / ‘The Death-Bride,’ as an influence on her composition of Frankenstein. "'O!' said the count to him, 'I beg, in future you will be a little more circumspect in your fancies, and leave my daughter to rest quietly in the tomb——'Tis well—' Concludes with: "We have seen no one." "He has then disappeared," replied the officer, smiling: he searched every corner for the marquis, but in vain. The house was thoroughly examined, but without success; and the following day the officer quitted the baths with his soldiers, without his prisoner, and very much dissatisfied. … Back to this book: The Spectre Barber, by Johann Karl August Musäus One of the best, if not THE best gothic story from the era of 1790s-1810s. This is one of the blueprint tales that established the genre. Initially suggests a proto-Dracula horror, before shifting to a Poe-like ghost visitation, to a delightful "good luck" Good Samaritan romance-love story. Full, complex and satisfying. ***** ……… Section Two – ‘Eeroe Supernatural – Mary Shelley’ “On Ghosts” **** Inventive investigative essay by Mary Shelley, first published in London Magazine (March 1824) and has her unique style imprinted in this work. Great read. “terra incognita” = a term used in cartography for regions that have not been mapped or documented. Similarly, uncharted or unknown seas would be labeled “mare incognitum”. “.. over-heated brain..” . “Transformation” “...a thousand fanged thoughts stung me to the heart.” If you were not aware of the author's name then the story of 'Frankenstein' echoes in this tale. It's as if with deceptive charm the two central characters of 'Frankenstein' are merged and then split and culminating in a surprisingly redemptive 'transformation.' “The opening rose in May was not more sweet than this dear girl.” “I became a spoilt child. Who could control me? Not the letters and advice of Torella. Only strong necessity visiting me in the abhorred shape of an empty purse.” “I listened with indignation – I repelled him with disdain.” Sylphlike = (of a woman or girl) slender and graceful. Fascinating depiction of the seashore and rocky harbour and ocean, gothic indeed in that the scenery and weather (like Samuel Colridge's writings before Shelly, and the Brontes' after her) depict the spiritually and emotional state of the narrator. “'Oh, you cousin of Lucifer!'” “Slowly paced the bright, bright orb up the eastern sky; long it lingered in the zenith, and still more slowly wandered down the west: it touched the horizon's verge – it was lost!” . “The Mortal Immortal” Intriguing and somewhat beguiling. I love the premise as an inversion of our fear of death, only to highlight the darker side of living eternally. **** My favourite lines are: “.. she often visited the cottage of my father, and when forbidden to go thither, she would stray toward the neighboring wood, and meet me beside its shady fountain.” “Death! mysterious, ill-visaged friend of weak humanity! Why alone of all mortals have you cast me from your sheltering fold? Oh, for the peace of the grave! the deep silence of the iron-bound tomb! that thought would cease to work in my brain, and my heart beat no more with emotions varied only by new forms of sadness!” “And the more I live, the more I dread death, even while I abhor life. Such an enigma is man -- born to perish -- when he wars, as I do, against the established laws of his nature.” “(...) but, oh! the weight of never-ending time—the tedious passage of the still-succeeding hours!” “Sometimes I fancy age advancing upon me. One grey hair I have found. Fool! do I lament? Yes, the fear of age and death often creeps coldly into my heart; and the more I live, the more I dread death, even while I abhor life.” …. The story opens with: JULY 16, 1833. --This is a memorable anniversary for me; on it I complete my three hundred and twenty-third year! The Wandering Jew?--certainly not. More than eighteen centuries have passed over his head. In comparison with him, I am a very young Immortal. Am I, then, immortal? This is a question which I have asked myself, by day and night, for now three hundred and three years, and yet cannot answer it. I detected a gray hair amidst my brown locks this very day-- that surely signifies decay. Yet it may have remained concealed there for three hundred years--for some persons have become entirely white headed before twenty years of age. I will tell my story, and my reader shall judge for me. I will tell my story, and so contrive to pass some few hours of a long eternity, become so wearisome to me. For ever! Can it be? to live for ever! . Section Three – ‘Gothic Tales’ by Mary Shelley “The Mourner” **** [published in the Keepsake for 1830 (1829)] One fatal remembrance, one sorrow that throws Its bleak shade alike o'er our joys and our woes, To which life nothing darker or brighter can bring, For which joy has no balm, and affliction no sting! {quoting Thomas Moore} “There the glancing foliage obscures heaven, as the silken texture of a veil a woman’s lovely features.” “I was a fag to a hard taskmaster…” “.. the mortal beverage; it was on the table before her when I entered… I poured away the fatal draught.” “A Dirge” (attributed to Percy Shelley) **** Either hauntingly prophetic, or beautifully redacted. “The Dream” **** Captivating! “.. and that while angers surrounded her in every shape, she was alive only to a still small voice that whispered to her heart the dream which was to decide their destinies.” “The Invisible Girl” **** “Beneath this picture was inscribed in golden letters, ‘The Invisible Girl.’” Another original and heart-felt gothic tale by Mary Shelley. “The Pilgrims” Beautiful gothic tale of the tragic romantic genre. “… because I dare assert the truth in the courts of princes. But since my tongue cannot frame itself to speak that which my heart does not dictate..” “The Heir of Mondolfo” **** Passion and fury, love and revenge. This is what makes Shelley’s writing so engaging. “Passion, suddenly awake, made every artery tingle by its thrilling presence.” Section Four – ‘The Horrors of Isolation’ by Mary Shelley “The Last Man” [2nd half] Truly epic, wonderful story (see my review) “Roger Dodsworth” *** Reminds me of Poe in the peculiar response to a prevalent hoax of the time. “… nor could the influence of dewy night or genial morn penetrate his more than adamantine panoply.” • adamantine = rigidly firm • panoply = impressive and extensive collection.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Molly

    While experiencing Mary Shelley's other less-known work has been fascinating, I can't help but think that cutting away certain parts of the longer stories was frankly not needed and that I didn't really enjoy most of the other short stories in the book. However, it was a fun distraction from time to time and can be a great way of getting informed about her other works, but I would only recommend this as a jumping-off point. While experiencing Mary Shelley's other less-known work has been fascinating, I can't help but think that cutting away certain parts of the longer stories was frankly not needed and that I didn't really enjoy most of the other short stories in the book. However, it was a fun distraction from time to time and can be a great way of getting informed about her other works, but I would only recommend this as a jumping-off point.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sandra Lotfinia

  4. 4 out of 5

    Christie Nolan

  5. 5 out of 5

    Victoria Pope

  6. 5 out of 5

    Marla

  7. 4 out of 5

    Laura

  8. 5 out of 5

    Evelina Hagström

  9. 5 out of 5

    Pekin :)

  10. 5 out of 5

    Muhemed Masika

  11. 5 out of 5

    Ann

  12. 4 out of 5

    Melanie

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

  14. 5 out of 5

    Ashley

  15. 5 out of 5

    Amy Patterson

  16. 4 out of 5

    Carl Mcdaniel

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kristen

  18. 5 out of 5

    Curtis Baggett

  19. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Bradshaw

  20. 5 out of 5

    Zuly Ca

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kathryn

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kaytlin Hoover

  23. 5 out of 5

    Lærke

  24. 4 out of 5

    Katie Lang

  25. 5 out of 5

    James

  26. 4 out of 5

    J.S.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Mary Catherine

  28. 4 out of 5

    Alyssa

  29. 5 out of 5

    Cambria

  30. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Mcguinness

  31. 4 out of 5

    Ash

  32. 5 out of 5

    Vanessa

  33. 5 out of 5

    Sara

  34. 5 out of 5

    Ullis

  35. 5 out of 5

    libraryfacts

  36. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie

  37. 4 out of 5

    Denice

  38. 5 out of 5

    Flisan Granberg

  39. 4 out of 5

    Andreas Bengtsson

  40. 4 out of 5

    Maria

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