Dark-Draco's Reviews > Gothic Tales

Gothic Tales by Elizabeth Gaskell
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it was amazing
bookshelves: horror, favorites, short-story-collection

I was really looking forward to picking this up and was instantly disappointed by the first story 'Disappearances', which was less of a story and more of a loose collection of missing person reports. My heart sank and with trepidation I turned the page to try one more...and am so glad I dis, as the collection immediately got better by a factor of 110.

'The Old Nurse's Story' remains my favourite. A disturbing, chilling story of a dead child hunting the house where she was thrown from. There is something poignant and appealing about it's simple telling that makes it so much more scarier than more modern slasher ghost stories.

Of the other stories, 'The Poor Clare' is the only one with a really supernatural twist - curses and witches combine with a tragic love story to make a bloody good read. Witches are also the theme of 'Lois the Witch' (as you'd expect!), but there are no magic powers here, just an innocent caught up in the hysteria of the Salem trials. I also enjoyed 'Curious. but True' a case of mistaken identity that leads the narrator into the secret world of fairy tale characters. The other stories not mentioned here were also good, but these are the ones that stick in my mind the most.

Overall, I am so glad that I picked this up to read - a change from Gaskell's more pastoral novels. Reminds my very mush of the first time I read a MR James ghost story - that same delicious sense of shivering down the spine.
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Reading Progress

August 19, 2013 – Started Reading
August 19, 2013 – Shelved
August 24, 2013 – Finished Reading
August 31, 2013 – Shelved as: horror
August 31, 2013 – Shelved as: favorites
August 31, 2013 – Shelved as: short-story-collection

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message 1: by Peter (new) - added it

Peter Great review, it was The Old Nurse's that did it for me also. Read the Penguin Little Black Classic and new I had to read the rest.


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