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Considered one of the foremost humorists in England at the turn of the century, W. W. Jacobs (1863-1943) is best known for his masterpiece of horror, "The Monkey's Paw." He was the author of thirteen 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 also 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 Jacobs' 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 Jacobs' craftmanship is abundantly apparent in many of his other tales, as they will discover in this new volume. Horror and mystery aficionados will be intrigued and delighted 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.
Academy Chicago Publishers
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