|Title:||Visible and Invisible|
|Publisher:||Hutchinson and Co.|
|Tags:||fiction, horror, short stories|
Benson's second collection of ghost stories contains three powerful tales featuring the type of "spectres" that Benson seems to have been most haunted by: large ("Junonian," as he might say), attractive, cheerful, outgoing, middle-aged women. In "The Outcast" she is a reincarnation of Judas, in "Inscrutable Decrees" she is an emotional sadist and a murderer by omission, and in "Mrs. Amworth"—one of the best supernatural tales ever written—she is a conventional but nonetheless terrifying vampire.
There are other good tales here too, particularly "Negotium Perambulans" (featuring a giant slug acting as an instrument of divine vengeance) and "Roderick's Story," that rare tale about a benign haunting that still produces a shiver and the consciousness of a world beyond. [Suggest a different description.]
Author Bio for Benson, E. F. (Edward Frederic)
Edward Frederic Benson (24 July 1867 – 29 February 1940) was an English novelist, biographer, memoirist, archaeologist and short story writer, known professionally as E. F. Benson. His friends called him Fred.
Benson's first book was Sketches from Marlborough. He started his novel writing career with the (then) fashionably controversial Dodo (1893), which was an instant success, and followed it with a variety of satire and romantic and supernatural melodrama. He repeated the success of Dodo, which featured a portrait of composer and militant suffragette Ethel Smyth (which she "gleefully acknowledged", according to actress Prunella Scales), with the same cast of characters a generation later: Dodo the Second (1914), "a unique chronicle of the pre-1914 Bright Young Things" and Dodo Wonders (1921), "a first-hand social history of the Great War in Mayfair and the Shires". The Mapp and Lucia series, written relatively late in his career, consists of six novels and two short stories. The novels are: Queen Lucia, Lucia in London, Miss Mapp (including the short story "The Male Impersonator"), Mapp and Lucia, Lucia's Progress (published as The Worshipful Lucia in the United States) and Trouble for Lucia. The short stories are "The Male Impersonator" and "Desirable Residences". Both appear in anthologies of Benson's short stories, and the former is also often appended to the end of the novel Miss Mapp.--Wikipedia.
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