Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories” as Want to Read:
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories

4.25  ·  Rating details ·  1,722 ratings  ·  194 reviews
From Lovecraft to Borges to Gaiman, a century of intrepid literary experimentation has created a corpus of dark and strange stories that transcend all known genre boundaries. Together these stories form The Weird, and its practitioners include some of the greatest names in twentieth and twenty-first century literature.

Exotic and esoteric, The Weird plunges you into dark
Paperback, 1152 pages
Published November 1st 2010 by Corvus
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Weird, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Chaz Its an anthology, so it's a mix. If you generally like Lovecraft or Harlan, Ellison these stories are great. The stories start run from the 19th…moreIts an anthology, so it's a mix. If you generally like Lovecraft or Harlan, Ellison these stories are great. The stories start run from the 19th century to modern, so some of the writing is dated. (less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.25  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,722 ratings  ·  194 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories
Watching the number of characters I can fit into this textbox dwindle away as I review each story is creating a feeling of anxiety entirely appropriate to this book. Thanks, goodreads.

Alfred Kubin, “The Other Side” (excerpt), 1908 (translation, Austria)
Set somewhere on Earth in the fictional city of Pearl, this story featured an interesting juxtaposition of a straight-forward, almost newsprint-esque voice addressing the successive plagues of sleeping sickness, animal infestation, and
May 01, 2019 is currently reading it
Shelves: buddy-reads
An interesting collection of Weird Fiction covering over a century of work, edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer. I'm slowly tackling this one and rating each story as I go along:

- The Other Side (excerpt) (1908) Alfred Kubin - 2 stars

- The Screaming Skull (1908) F. Marion Crawford - 3 stars

- The Willows (1907) Algernon Blackwood - 3 stars

- Sredni Vashtar (1910) Saki - 4 stars

- Casting the Runes (1911) M.R. James - 3 stars

- How Nuth Would Have Practised His Art Upon the Gnoles (1912) Lord Dunsany -
Yorgos St.
You are right! I did not read the whole thing but anything below 5 stars is a crime.

Still reading it. Yes, it's awesome. My only complaints...No Gene Wolfe or Arthur Machen stories and yet there is one by GRR Martin. Weird indeed..
Dec 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This is the most comprehensive and eclectic story collection of the sub-genre to date. Many will comment on this book’s size. It is over a thousand pages of fairly small text, usually in two columns per page (Weird Tales style), 750 000 words of weirdness from writers in over eighteen different countries. There are stories that are known, stories that are much less known and some stories translated into English for the first time.

A huge collection of stories and a variety of authors from all
Mar 19, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I would rank this at the same exalted level as Manguel's excellent BLACK WATER anthologies - not just another horror anthology, but a true tribute to weird literature throughout the world. By turns tender and terrifying, straight-faced and satirical, graceful and grotesque, awe-inspiring and devastating, the stories in this wide-ranging volume are capable of producing one dizzying revelation after another, as they explore the height, depth and breadth of the unfettered human imagination.
Nancy Oakes
Aug 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: weird
Massive shrieks of delight!! As far as a humongous collection of weird tales, it just don't get better than this, folks. Seriously. Even considering the 1152 double-columned pages, its heft (not at all comfortable for reading in bed) and the couple of months it took me to get through this weighty tome, it was all worth it. While every anthology has a few stories that a reader's not going to like, overall this one is a 5/5 star collection, worth every moment it took to read and certainly worth ...more
RTC, because this book is freaking massive and deserves for me to spend some time on it.

Buddy read with the good folks over at Spells, Space and Screams.
Ed Erwin
Jan 04, 2020 marked it as didn-t-finish
Damn it! I checked this out to read one single story, but I'm too tempted by the others to skip them. I'm gonna have to read at least the ones by James Tiptree, Joanna Russ, Michel Bernanos, Amos Tutuola, ....
Kat  Hooper
Apr 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.

I haven’t actually read every page of The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories, yet I’m giving it my highest recommendation. Edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer, Master and Mistress of Weird, The Weird is 1126 pages long and should really be considered a textbook of weird fiction. It contains 110 carefully chosen stories spanning more than 100 years of weird fiction. Here’s what you can expect to find in this massive volume:

A “Forweird” by Michael
Skylar Phelps
Sep 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
If you are fascinated by imaginative fiction like me, especially the stranger, sometimes darker side of the imagination, then I strongly recommend this collection. It is HUGE and granted, some of the stories are better than others but this book has changed my reading life forever.
Liviu Szoke
This is the Holy Bible of the horror anthologies, particularly for the uncanny, weird horror. 110 stories, novellas, novel fragments and even entire novels, from Belgium to Iran, from South America to North America, from England to Bengal and India. Some are great, some are masterpieces, some are classics, some are crap. I fought to finish this mammoth this year, despite its length and complexity, otherwise it would have been a shame to start a book in May and to finish it next year. ...more
James Everington
Oct 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I don’t know if you've ever seen the Man Vs. Food TV program (if not, basically some idiot attempts to eat an 40oz steak or 3ft pizza or something…) but I've just finished reading The Weird, a vast (100+ stories, 750000 words) anthology of weird fiction put together by Jeff and Ann VanderMeer.

“The publishers believe this is the largest volume of weird fiction ever housed between the covers of one book” the blurb says, as if there’s any doubt…

Just the physical size of the book is somewhat
Paula Cappa
Jul 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
What's missing in this horror compendium? See if you can guess.

If you are a horror short story lover as I am, this is the anthology to have on your shelf. That is, if you have the space as this volume is bigger and heavier than Stephen King's colossal Under the Dome, and quite boxy to read on your lap (I used a pillow to offset the weight). What I liked about this compendium is the range of time it covers for horror stories. Not only the master horror writers like Blackwood, Lovecraft, MR James
I Can't Believe It's Not the Necronomicon

More authors are included in this book then may be listed in this database but all of the first lines of each story are listed here.

One of my favorite stories, by relative-unknown Craig Padawer, is The Meat Garden. Read it here, carefully, as it is fairly representational of the wide range of tones which this tome holds. Then there are seemingly-normal tales of mystery like Margaret Irwin's The Book. Some of the stories are in the public domain but
Julie Davis
Oct 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
It's October. Of course I'm reading something like this.

Much to my own surprise I have developed a real love of weird fiction over the last few years. (I blame the H.P. Lovecraft Literary Podcast.)

This collection contains short stories and novellas in chronological order, from around the world. I'd already read the earliest, classic stories included but was really pleased at the selections. (Ahem - so the VanderMeers had the good taste to agree with MY taste. Yes, I realize the judgment call
This is very heavy book. I found it too hard to read and hold the book. Best to read on an eReader.
D Dyer
This collection featured some truly spectacular choices made by the editors. I had the pleasure of rereading some of my favorite stories by Octavia Butler, margo Lanigan and Joyce Carol Oates as well as of being introduced to authors I’ll definitely be seeking out more work from. But not every choice was an inspired one, there were some stories that despite very much enjoying them I didn’t feel fit the overall theme of the collection and others that were just bad examples both of the genre and ...more
Casey Hampton
Yes, diversity. Keep this word in mind. This anthology is diverse. It is a wonderful collection of historical and contemporary world wide Weird fiction. Diversity.

If you want to read Weird, a comprehensive guide to the subgenre, this delivers.
If you are expecting story after story to be a 10/10 read, this will disappoint.

This is a map, a wondrous map to the Weird. My advice? Those readerly expectations you now clutch as you weigh the decision to either pick this book up or pass it by,
Jul 08, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: weird-fiction
I've resolved that, if I'm interested in a big book, I would get it for my ereader. Such is the case here.

However, I discovered that my ebook version is missing the story "The Colomber" by Dino Buzzati. I informed amazon, and they replied that they are working with the publisher on the problem, and they will not be selling the ebook until the problem is solved.

This book is a collection of weird stories that were published in over the past 100 years , written by authors world-wide. Weird fiction
Paul Roberts
Mar 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
DISCLAIMER: I have not read all the stories within this massive tome of awesome. I'm quite sure the VanderMeers have designed their book to be consumed in small doses, giving each of the tales time to fester and to inspire.

The greatest power this compendium wields is to bring to the reader's attention a myriad of lessor-known masters. Consider it a test bag handed to you by a drug dealer.

Standouts thus far include:

"Genius Loci" by Clark Ashton Smith
"The Book" by Margaret Irwin
"Angels in Love"
Orrin Grey
Sep 06, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I didn't actually read every word of The Weird. Some were stories I'd read before, others I just didn't get to. I hunted and pecked around, and this is ultimately a book that'll reward many returns, but I don't need to have read all of it to throw five stars its way. This is exactly what it aims to be, a pretty definitive compendium of a certain subgenre of fiction, and since that's a particular subgenre that's very near-and-dear to my own weird heart, I found this massive tome inspiring, and ...more
The Literary Chick
Mar 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Fantastic, all, from writers obscure and well known. Every story is like falling into a dream. Rare for an anthology to be this consistently filled with gems.
Mar 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing

"I can't believe I read the WHOLE thing!"

This is a MASSIVE tome, at just less than 800,000 words (that's more than two "The Brothers Karamazov's") and 110 stories, this is the "War and Peace" of horror anthologies. And this is easily one of the best horror anthologies I've ever read. It's both entertaining and informative to see how the "weird tale" has changed over time, it seems to me we are living in the best time for weird fiction in probably half a century.

It's true not everything here is a
Bernie Gourley
Jan 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
For a book themed by such a niche genre, stories of the weird, this book covers a huge amount of ground. Over 1100+ pages, the book includes more than a hundred stories. While the book mostly consists of short stories, it does include several novellas and a novel excerpt. Not only does the book cover temporal ground (from the 19th century through writers of today), it includes works by authors from India, Japan, Nigeria, Benin, Iran, the Czech Republic, and many other nations besides the ...more
Don't vote for this, it's a review in progress

This book is gigantic. It's like a thousand pages long, but each page has at least two of a normal books amount of words on it. So this is really like a two thousand page book. It's going to take awhile to get through. Some of the stories in this collection are actually novellas, and some of them are available on their own. When they are I'm going to review them on their own and just link to them. That way I'll save space in this review, and get to
Alice M.
May 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: full-marks
Every story I've read so far hits that sweet spot in the middle of experimental, magical realist, fantasy, horror, and literary that I love so much.

A brilliant collection.

Jul 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Having already decided not to review each story individually, I'm not sure what the best tack for discussing this collection is, so I'm just gonna hit a few random points. I can't comment on how good the curation is, because of the same ignorance of the genre that made it worth reading in the first place. I found it quite valuable in filling that gap; I still don't have a very solid idea of the overall state of the genre at any given time, but I'm much more familiar with the general arc of its ...more
DeAnna Knippling
Jul 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A massive, well-researched, world-spanning collection of weird short fiction.

When I first started reading this, in something like 2016, I hadn't read nearly as much weird fiction. But, as I've read, I've tracked down many of the authors and read more by them, and become more open to reading the unfamiliar in general. The expansion of my tastes wasn't all due to this book, but certainly a large chunk of it was.

I liked the earlier stories more than the latter ones, which tend to, alas, to have
May 27, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: horror, anthology
THE WEIRD is a massive compendium of weird short fiction dating back over the last century. It's by far the biggest anthology I've ever encountered and I'm not ashamed to say that it took me a number of years to finally get through the thing. The collection is themed chronologically, beginning with many established classics of the genre before moving into new and unexplored territory.

Kubin's THE OTHER SIDE opens this collection, but I'm not a huge fan of novel excerpts as I find the lack of
Apr 20, 2018 added it
Shelves: sff, didnt-finish
I didn't realize this was the canonical collection. It's bigger than my Bible! There are entire novels in it, including some that were translated just for this volume! This is serious business, and I just couldn't get anywhere with it in the four weeks the library gave me.

If I check it out again, I'll have a strategy. I wasn't aware that it was a book that was going to require a strategy.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Within a Weird 1 5 Jun 05, 2016 08:17AM  
Weird recommendations? 2 12 Dec 14, 2014 06:52AM  
Chaos Reading: The Weird: A Compendium.... (2012) 6 107 May 16, 2012 08:12PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Songs of a Dead Dreamer and Grimscribe
  • The Willows
  • The Brotherhood of Mutilation
  • Teatro Grottesco
  • The Rust Maidens
  • Dangerous Visions
  • Monster, She Wrote: The Women Who Pioneered Horror and Speculative Fiction
  • A Collapse of Horses
  • Last Days
  • The Other Side of the Mountain
  • The Hungry House
  • The Pastel City
  • The Time Traveler's Almanac
  • The People of the Pit
  • The Screaming Skull
  • Once Upon a Christmas Wedding
  • The Hounds of Tindalos
  • The Book
See similar books…
NYT bestselling writer Jeff VanderMeer has been called “the weird Thoreau” by the New Yorker for his engagement with ecological issues. His most recent novel, the national bestseller Borne, received wide-spread critical acclaim and his prior novels include the Southern Reach trilogy (Annihilation, Authority, and Acceptance). Annihilation won the Nebula and Shirley Jackson Awards, has been ...more
“If I were you, I would never tell ugly stories about ingenious ways of killing people, for you never can tell but that someone at the table may be tired of his or her nearest and dearest.” 2 likes
“The gods are here, if they are anywhere at all in the world.” 2 likes
More quotes…