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The Mammoth Book of Modern Ghost Stories (The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories #5)

3.64  ·  Rating Details  ·  209 Ratings  ·  29 Reviews
More than twenty-five modern masterpieces to chill the blood — from Martin Amis, P.G. Wodehouse, John Steinbeck, and Ian Rankin
Paperback, 512 pages
Published September 14th 2007 by Running Press (first published September 1st 2007)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 725)
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Jan 14, 2009 Danielle rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction, tidbits
I know what you're thinking. For some reason, the publishers of this book didn't think literature would sell, so they geared the title and cover art to make you believe this was a collection of shocking-but-true ghost stories that would leave you with a good scare. So, if that was you're assumption, and you're thinking "That's not my thing" then let me tell you, you're wrong.
This is a fabulous collection of literature, that just happens to deal with the supernatural. (Think "A Christmas Carol" -
Richard Gazala
Oct 02, 2010 Richard Gazala rated it really liked it
Editor Peter Haining does a good job choosing the selections for this collection of ghost stories. Rather than emphasizing pieces featuring moaning phantoms, clanking chains and other staple but simplistic fare common to the genre, Haining sought stories heavy with eerie mood and tone. As with any anthology like this one, some vignettes are better or more effective than others. That said, the overall quality of the selections is consistently high. Some of the tales surely will curdle a reader's ...more
Mar 24, 2010 Galo rated it liked it
Shelves: short-fiction
This one took me a very long time to complete since nearly half of the collection of stories were either painfully dull and tame (surprisingly by well known authors whose stories may have frightened or terrified readers at the first-half of the 20th century, but are "ho-hum" by today's horror standards), or had little or nothing to do with ghosts (just a vague notion of the supernatural), and still others read like bad urban legends with predictable endings. But nonetheless I read them all from ...more
Sue Bridehead (A Pseudonym)
I read the first two sections of this book (The Modern Tradition and The Golden Era), but have to stop for now to return this to the library and fulfill someone else's hold.

There are no real standouts so far; every tale is more or less the same as the one before it. Nabakov's and D.H. Lawrence's contributions the genre are frankly bizarre; not so much ghost stories as supernatural tales about the time-space continuum playing tricks on unwitting protagonists. If I had to pick a favorite, I'd go w
Dec 27, 2015 Amara marked it as to-read-pub-2000s
Recommended to Amara by: Goodreads Recommendations
As this is an anthology, I'm rating each short story individually and averaging those ratings out for the book's overall rating.

"Oh, Whistle and I'll Come to You, My Lad" by M.R. James
The House at Treheale by A.C. Benson
The Richpins by E.G. Swain
The Everlasting Club by Arthur Gray
Number Seventy-Nine by A.N.L. Munby
Playing with Fire by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The House Surgeon by Rudyard Kipling
The Grove of Ashtaroth by John Buchan
A Man from Glasgow by Somerset Maugham
The Last Laugh by D.
Oct 20, 2012 Lara rated it really liked it
This is a really well-chosen anthology filled with well-known authors, some known for supernatural fiction and some I wasn't aware wrote any ghost stories. (D.H. Lawrence was a pleasant - and fairly creepy - surprise, as were Nabokov and Alec Guinness, yes, the actor Alec Guinness.) It's worth picking up for that alone.

It's categorized by type of ghost story, which makes it an excellent choice if you are trying to figure out what kind of ghost stories you like or are in the mood for something sp
Oct 03, 2011 Amber rated it it was ok
I brought this book to read while camping this summer. It was okay - some of the stories I really liked while others I did not fine entertaining or even remotely believable. I know this is fiction but I prefer books that let your mind ponder how it could happen in the 'real' world. I would recommend it to any die hard fans but I probably wouldn't re-read it in the future.
This book was boring. I didn't really like it that much. I thought that it would be better but it wasn't. I would not recommend this book to anyone. This book has many different stories by different people but there not that good to me. I just really didn't like this book. Some parts seem crazy but amazing and others seem just straight up boring.
Nov 15, 2009 Jo rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A collection of ghost\supernatural tales from the past century. I'm only awarding this 4 stars because, although as a whole I really liked it, some of the stories weren't as good as others. Typical of this kind of book; some stories were fantastic, others were kind of meh and some just made me scratch my head.
Aug 23, 2013 Diana rated it liked it
All in all, not a very inspired anthology. Many stories are tedious and many have little to do with the supernatural. Of course, I loved the M.R.James and the Edith Wharton ones, but I was expecting some new, more compelling titles.
Nov 27, 2011 Mark rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It was rather hard work to finish this book - some of the stories are really not very good - but I'm glad I did. The last part,entitled "Haunting Times: Tales of Unease", is easily the best.
Claudia Harrington
Apr 07, 2009 Claudia Harrington rated it liked it
I Couldn't finish it. A lot of the stories were good but some of them were so hard to follow that I ended up questioning why they where scary? Overall it an ok read.
Nov 24, 2012 France-Andrée rated it liked it
Shelves: anthology
I didn't get exactly what I wanted when I started this book. I wanted something to scare me and this was more intellectual. I liked it though. The only thing is that it's pretty uneven, some stories are really good and some left me thinking : 'uh'. The book stories are divided in section. One section is called 'Christmas Spirits: Festive Seasons Chillers'... I was expecting stories set at Christmas, but they were PUBLISHED at Christmas which I think was a let down, I don't get that. My favorite ...more
Includes the first ghost story I read as a kid: M. R. James' "Oh Whistle, And I'll Come To You, My Lad" that has haunted me ever since! The rest of the stories aren't particularly scary, some I wouldn't even call ghost stories.
Jul 25, 2013 Whitney rated it it was ok
I thought this anthology was uneven at best. "The Party" by William Nolan and "Video Nasty" by Phillip Pullman were well done. The rest of the stories fell into one of two categories: classics I'd already read (e.g. "Clytie" by Eudora Welty) or stories so dry that I found myself skimming to the end.

At worst, it's mislabeled. Some of these stories are over 100 years old--not exactly modern. Many of them aren't ghost stories, either.

Overall, I was unimpressed.
Nov 04, 2013 Caroline rated it it was ok
Shelves: on-kindle
I really struggled with this book. Mammoth indeed. I came to it expecting to be entertained with modern ghost stories, but found that many of them dated from the early 1900's. Not so modern. Some of them were very long-winded. All was not lost however. There were some very good tales in the collection, making it worth my while to stick with it. I don't think I will be reading any more "Mammoth Books of....." in the near future though.
Aug 09, 2008 Alleycatfan rated it it was amazing
If you like this you'll love The Mammoth Book of 20th Century Ghost Stories and earlier edition with completely different ghost stories by many famous and great others including: P.G. Wodehouse, Henry James, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and H.G. Wells. Some are silly some are goofy and some had me saying, "Now why would anyone think this is scary." They are all a good romp and a key to marking the evolution of the gothic tale.
J. Mark
May 25, 2008 J. Mark rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror
I have to credit my good friend Tom for hooking me onto this one. Incredibly compiled collection of great writing, ghost stories or not. Somerset Maugham, Daphne DuMaurier, Joyce Carol Oates, even John Gielgud before he was a "Sir." Most of them deliver genuine creeps, but the whole collection was SO well selected. I will read more in this series.
Yay! I'm finished. Some of these stories weren't ghost stories, they were supernatural but no ghosts appeared. First half of this book was filled with boring stories, but there were some real gems in here, but they were few and far between. I had expected so much more of this collection and I was badly disappointed unfortunately...
Cheryl apple
Apr 11, 2009 Cheryl apple rated it liked it
I am reading this book on-line through the "Daily Lit" web site, and it's really good. This site sends you 3 or 4 paragraphs each day of the week, or however often you like.

Now I've finished reading one short story from it called "The Willows", and it wasn't very good. I won't read any more from this book.
Jul 25, 2011 Deanne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: paranormal
Some of the stories are brilliant, and they start with one of my favourite ghost stories, Oh whistle and I'll come to you my lad by M.R.James. However some of the stories can barely be called ghost stories and only just make 2 stars.
Favorites were the stories by M.R. James, A.C Benson, Rudyard Kipling, W. Somerset Maugham, D.H. Lawrence, Edith Wharton, Daphne du Maurier, James Thurber, Kingsley Amis, E.F. Benson, and Marjorie Bowen.
Stephanie Boggs
Jun 16, 2013 Stephanie Boggs rated it it was amazing
I am not really sure how to make a review on this book because it is a book with lots of little stories in it. Every story was different and eery. Not really scary but interesting to read.
Sep 27, 2012 Ashley added it
this was kinda a waste of my money, 15 bucks. The stories were all written in umm well 19th century english & I hate that, it says Modern ghost stories -.- ugh oh wellz
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja)
The description doesn't have the right list of authors. This one doesn't have Steinbeck or Wodehouse.
Apr 28, 2012 Janey rated it really liked it
Nice and creepy. Most of these I hadn't read which is surprising given my horror anthology collection.
Jun 18, 2011 Retta rated it liked it
Some of the stories are really good others aren't quite as good.
Jun 18, 2011 Retta rated it liked it
some of the stories are good, but not all
Jan 15, 2009 Kellie marked it as to-read
this looks so good! I love stuff like this!
LadyJoana is currently reading it
Feb 13, 2016
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Peter Alexander Haining (April 2, 1940 – November 19, 2007) was a British journalist, author and anthologist who lived and worked in Suffolk. Born in Enfield, Middlesex, he began his career as a reporter in Essex and then moved to London where he worked on a trade magazine before joining the publishing house of New English Library.

Haining achieved the position of Editorial Director before becoming
More about Peter Haining...

Other Books in the Series

The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories (5 books)
  • The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories
  • The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories 2
  • The Mammoth Book of Victorian and Edwardian Ghost Stories
  • The Mammoth Book of 20th Century Ghost Stories

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“Once upon a time the fairy tales begin. But then they end and often you don't know really what has happened, what was meant to happen, you only know what you've been told, what the words suggest.” 2 likes
“If you have ever come up against Nothing you have no idea how it can scare you out of your wits. When I was a child I used to be afraid of Something in the dark. I know now that the most fearful thing about the dark is that we may find Nothing in it.” 1 likes
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