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Black Water: The Book of Fantastic Literature (Black Water #1)

4.38  ·  Rating Details ·  377 Ratings  ·  26 Reviews
This huge anthology offers a kaleidoscope of brilliant writing from the Magi of the imagination. Alberto Manguel has selected 72 fantastic tales from life on the edge of the twilight zone, with stories from Marguerite Yourcenar, Herman Hesse, Italo Calvino, Vladimir Nabokov, and many, many more. This is a collection of irresistible masterpieces, many of which have never be ...more
Paperback, 967 pages
Published December 13th 1984 by Three Rivers Press (first published 1984)
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Glenn Russell
May 22, 2016 Glenn Russell rated it it was amazing

Alberto Manguel - Argentine-Canadian anthologist, translator, essayist, novelist and editor. He is surely among the very greatest readers of books and lovers of world literature. Black Water collects 72 tales of the fantastic by such authors as Jean Cocteau, Marguerite Yourcenar, Herman Hesse, Italo Calvino, Vladimir Nabokov, H.G.Wells, Franz Kafka and Ursula K. LeGuin. There is one story I particularly enjoy from a less well known author from Argentina, Manuel Mujica Láinez, and it is this stor
Aug 01, 2007 Falkor rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of fantasy and horror
This superb collection of fantasy stories includes a few famous, widely anthologized classics such as “The Monkey’s Paw,” but mostly offers up choice specimens of unjustly neglected works from both major and lesser known authors. The stories tend toward dark fantasy, with some that could be considered outright horror—Julio Cortazar’s “House Taken Over” is five pages of super concentrated terror that will leave readers jumping at every noise. A common theme unifying this diverse group of stories ...more
So enjoyable that I regret that I've come to the end. I really recommend it if you can find a copy.
Jun 16, 2012 Jeanne rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites

I highly recommend this collection for fans of fantastic literature or of short stories in general. You will love most, hate some and if you are like me, there will be a few you just don't even understand (what was that bus scene about in "Visitor From Down Under"??). Whether you take your time working your way through this massive collection as I did (read over 20 years) or read all 967 pages in one sitting - it is worth the time.

I was a little sad to finish this book after all the years we ha
Gary Parish
Jun 11, 2011 Gary Parish rated it it was amazing
A massive collection of short stories dealing with the supernatural and the fantastic, Manguel does a superb job of editing and selecting the pieces in this anthology. Some are humorous, some are darkly sinister, some confuse you and some appeal to your sense of justice or right & wrong. I read this cover-to-cover on and off over the course of a year and it always entertained me to no end, highly recommended!
Oct 09, 2015 Wayne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Adventurers All !!!
Recommended to Wayne by: similar stories


"Because you shelved SHOE LUST a few recommendations in Fantasy."

I must say this was The Last Thing I expected when my fascination with Things Historical had me pouncing on the Current Development of the Humble Shoe in "Shoe Lust" at our Local Bookstore in Dulwich Hill about 12 months ago. It is Fascinating and often pretty Wild.
As are the stories in the Black Water Anthology.

This Very Kindly Attendance of Goodreads had me rummaging among their group of Suggest
Dec 28, 2014 blushenka rated it it was amazing
This book is FANTASTIC. Heh. It's a great collection of tales, kudos to the editor for picking them so well. Some of them I knew from before, but not many. I have not found a single story in this collection that I did not enjoy and some of them were quite outstanding.
Among the ones I found outstanding: Poe's The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar, Max Beerbohm's Enoch Soames, Dickens' The Signalman, Saki's Laura, David Garnett's Lady Into Fox, Marguerite Yourcenar's How Wang-Fo was Saved, Isak Di
Jan 15, 2013 flannery rated it it was amazing
So far, SO incredible! Alberto Manguel wrote one of my favorite reference books, "A Dictionary of Imaginary Places," and this is as imaginative, as literate, as carefully considered a collection as any I have ever, ever read, each piece lovingly introduced by the editor with all the necessary biography to put each piece in context and also bridge time & place seamlessly... from Jean Cocteau to Jules Verne to Borges and O. Henry with not a page out of place... highly recommended, one of the b ...more
Martin Cosby
Jan 07, 2013 Martin Cosby rated it it was amazing
I read this anthology many years ago, and it made a big impression upon me. Many of the stories are deep, literary examples of fiction, whereas I had been more used to "horror" collections. A thoroughly engrossing read through different kinds of writing, never less than excellent, I have re-read it many times ... and am about to once more. Highly recommended.
This generous anthology is jam-packed with fascinating, instructive work and was my introduction to many magical writers beyond the traditional English-speaking fare. Delighted to discover that a second volume was published back in 1990 - heading to pick up a copy now...
Jul 02, 2013 Tiffany rated it really liked it
Memory suggests I read this as a kid by the hall light when I couldn't sleep, and that I was too creeped out to close my eyes. But by 1984 I was living in an off-campus apartment, paying my own bills. This book does that to you--makes you feel all small and helpless.
Jan 02, 2008 Jacob rated it it was amazing
My copy has the same ISBN, but the cover is a detail from George Tooker's awesome The Subway. This would be a perfect bedtime reader if not for its bulk.
Deborah Sheldon
May 24, 2016 Deborah Sheldon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A fabulous collection. In all honesty... read it.
Bill Shears
Apr 27, 2011 Bill Shears rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read through it ever decade-and-a-half or so. A fantastic collection of fantastic short stories from around the world.
Oct 24, 2009 Freder rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Manguel stays well away from the sensational, and goes for mood and depth.
Martin Valdes
Aug 22, 2011 Martin Valdes rated it it was amazing
Great read!!!!
Nov 13, 2014 P. rated it really liked it
This is a great collection! There are some big names and a lot of South American authors I have never heard of. The cover art rules. Some of the themes can get old if you read them all at once, so it is good to space things out. My favorite story was actually the first one, by Julio Cortazar, but the rest of the book wasn't disappointing. Just not as great.
Jan 14, 2014 John rated it it was amazing
brings back the joy and wonder of reading. fantastic anthology of timeless short stories. looking forward to digging into the second collection. nice short blurbs by alberto manguel, a reader's reader if ever there was one, introduces each story.
Aug 03, 2016 Martin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This collection is essential to anyone who loves The Twilight Zone in terms of fiction. I read this many years ago and am planning to go through it again. Chilling, intriguing, mystifying, unsettling and totally engrossing. The art of short story writing in one volume. Perfection.

Blind Lemon Dufflecoat
Jun 04, 2015 Blind Lemon Dufflecoat rated it it was amazing
Excellent collection of dark and strange tales. Some were familiar bur there were quite a few new to me.
Ken Krimstein
Dec 16, 2015 Ken Krimstein rated it it was amazing
a magisterial collection of wonders by the inimitable editor manguel...

the first of his many amazing curated collections of his i've read..
Jun 30, 2015 Louise rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Absolute gem.
Apr 12, 2014 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing
Superb. Just keep dipping in and out and you will continually find yourself covered in a viscous substance, the nature of which you can neither fully discern, nor fully wash off.....
Nov 21, 2014 Neven rated it really liked it
A wonderful collection—uneven as they usually are, but the high notes are unforgettable. Hunt it down if you like hard-to-classify, weird fiction.
Kate Mackley
Kate Mackley rated it really liked it
Oct 31, 2013
Lynn Reynolds
Lynn Reynolds rated it really liked it
Oct 01, 2011
Ellamay22 rated it it was amazing
Oct 30, 2013
Christy rated it really liked it
Jan 10, 2009
Michael rated it it was amazing
Sep 22, 2007
Asher Levy
Asher Levy rated it it was amazing
Dec 19, 2013
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Alberto Manguel (born 1948 in Buenos Aires) is an Argentine-born writer, translator, and editor. He is the author of numerous non-fiction books such as The Dictionary of Imaginary Places (co-written with Gianni Guadalupi in 1980) and A History of Reading (1996) The Library at Night (2007) and Homer's Iliad and Odyssey: A Biography (2008), and novels such as News From a Foreign Country Came (1991). ...more
More about Alberto Manguel...

Other Books in the Series

Black Water (2 books)
  • Black Water 2: More Tales of the Fantastic

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