Synopses & Reviews
The Monkey's Paw and Other Tales of Mystery and the Macabre, Compiled by Gary Hoppenstand, brings together a unique collection of W.W. Jacobs's horror stories never before collected. There are eighteen stories altogether in this collection of the macabre and supernatural. Jacobs's own boyhood memories of South Devon Wharf lend an authenticity to the many stories with nautical backgrounds or that feature seamen as protagonists.
W.W. Jacobs (1863-1943) was a very entertaining and certainly prolific Bristish writer of short stories. Eighteen of his admirably rich stories are gathered in this collection, which shows off to advantge his absolute mastery of the form. Obvious in his stories is a vein of humor, regardless of whether they are conventional mysteries or the supernatural ... Economical in presentation and thus in effect, these stories will be at home in the hands of any admirer of the form, and any public library with active story collections should seriously consider its purchase."
- Brad Hooper, Booklist
"...absolute mastery..." — Booklist
Jacobs is best known for his masterpiece of horror, "The Monkey's Paw." He was the author of 13 volumes of short stories, and 18 of these stories have been brought together for the first time in this gripping collection of macabre fiction. This book features Gothic narratives, stories of the macabre and supernatural tales. Many of them are also infused with shrewd and sardonic humor, for which Jacobs was justifiably famous.
Considered one of the foremost humorists in England at the turn of the century, W.W. Jacobs (1863-1943) is best-known for his materpiece of horror, "The Monkey's Paw." He was the author of thriteen volumes of short stories - all of which were commercially successful - and eighteen of these are included together for the first time in this gripping collection of horror fiction.
This book features Gothic narratives, stories of the macabre, and supernatural tales. But they are infused with shrewd and sardonic humor, for which Jacobs was justifiably famous. They demonstrate vividly his masterful instinct for weaving terror and suspense into scenes of ordinary everyday life. His boyhood memories of the South Devon Wharf lend authenticity to the many stories with nautical backgrounds, or that feature seamen as protagonists.
Because of its immense popularity, "The Monkey's Paw" has tended to overshadow a good deal of Jacob's other work, and it is undoubtedly the most readily recognized and by far the most anthologized story in the collection. But readers will be delighted to know that Jacob's craftmanship is abundantly apparent in his many other tales, as they will discover in this new volume. Horror and mystery aficionados will be intrigued and gratified by his range of skillful and witty prose; and they will at last come to appreciate a writer whose other work has been for so long "lost" to the general public.
Includes bibliographical references (p. xiii). "Selected bibliography of W.W. Jacobs": p. [xv]-xvi.
About the Author
W.W. Jacobs is considered a master of the macabre tale, and especially The Monkey's Paw, the lead story in this collection, is a classic horror tale. Collected here are 18 of his stories, and will introduce North American mystery and horror aficionados to one of the great lost artists of the genre. Readers will be delighted by his range of witty and skillful prose, and will see how they are infused with shrewd and sardonic humor. Jacobs was a master at weaving terror and suspense into scenes of everyday life. Readers new to Jacobs are in for a rare treat. Gary Hoppenstand is a professor of American thought and language at Michigan State University. He is the author of Clive Barker's Short Stories: Imagination as Metaphor in the Books of Blood and Other Works and the editor of "Popular Fiction: An Anthology, which won the Popular Culture Association's National Book Award.