Tag Archives: Amelia B. Edwards

The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories by Women edited by Marie O’Regan

Overview
Image result for the mammoth book of ghost stories by women book cover

Title: The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories by Women
Author: Marie O’Regan, Kim Lakin-Smith, Sarah Pinborough, Kelley Armstrong, Mary Elizabeth Braddon, Caitlin R. Kiernan, Mary E. Wilkins-Freeman, Sarah Langan, Elizabeth Massie, Alex Bell, Alison Littlewood, Nina Allan, Lisa Tuttle, Nancy Holder, Yvonne Navarro, Mary Cholmondeley, Marion Arnott, Lilith Saintcrow, Nancy Kilpatrick, Muriel Gray, Cynthia Asquith, Amelia B. Edwards, Elizabeth Gaskell, Gail Z. Martin, Edith Wharton & Gaie Sebold
Series: Mammoth Books
In: The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories by Women (Marie O’Regan)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Ghosts, Horror, Short story collections
Dates read: 29th June – 26th November 2020
Pace: Slow
Format: Anthology
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2012
5th sentence, 74th page: She was a sickly child, prone to unaccountable fits and agues, and her parents were convinced on more than one night that she would not live to see the dawn.

Synopsis

25 chilling short stories by outstanding female writers

Women have always written exceptional stories of horror and the supernatural. This anthology aims to showcase the very best of these, from Amelia B. Edwards’s ‘The Phantom Coach’, published in 1864, through past luminaries such as Edith Wharton and Mary Elizabeth Braddon, to modern talents including Muriel Gray, Sarah Pinborough and Lilith Saintcrow.

From tales of ghostly children to visitations by departed loved ones, and from heart-rending stories to the profoundly unsettling depiction of extreme malevolence, what each of these stories has in common is the effect of a slight chilling of the skin, a feeling of something not quite present, but nevertheless there.

If anything, this showcase anthology proves that sometimes the female of the species can also be the most terrifying…

Thoughts

This is a fantastic collection. One which I thoroughly enjoyed but learnt fairly quickly that I shouldn’t be reading this late at night… after all, some of these ghost stories are actually kind of scary. And reading them late at night with the wind blowing through the house while you’re home alone… not the best decision making of my life. To be fair, it’s also not the worst…. But that’s a whole other story.

I love that all of these ghost stories are written by women. I definitely believe that we need a collection of women-only writers more often. Or at least, I need to buy more to put on my shelves… although not all of these stories had strong women as the voice, they still felt more relatable than many of the stories that I read by men. I suppose shared experience and all that nonsense.

As a kid, I was never into ghost stories or tales of things that go bump in the night. Although I’ve gotten more into the genre over the past few years, it’s still sometimes not the most powerful driver for me. This collection though is swaying me more and more towards those horror stories.

<- The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories 2Field of the Dead ->

Image source: Goodreads

The Phantom Coach by Amelia B. Edwards

Overview
Image result for the mammoth book of ghost stories by women book cover

Title: The Phantom Coach
Author: Amelia B. Edwards
In: The Mammoth Book of Ghost Stories by Women (Marie O’Regan)
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Ghosts, Horror
Dates read: 21st November 2020
Pace: Medium
Format: Short story
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 1864
5th sentence, 74th page: The words that I was about to utter died upon my lips, and a strange horror – a dreadful horror – came upon me.

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Synopsis

It’s dark, snowing and deathly cold. Queque the Phantom Coach and the journey that strikes fear into the heart of man.

Thoughts

Phantom coaches seem to be a bit of a theme in ghost stories. I suppose there should be cars in some more modern-day stories. But I’ve only ever read tales which feature a phantom coach. Which is probably why I’ve never found the idea of a horse and carriage, or a coach to be all that romantic.

This short story had a whole heap of mystery occurring throughout. There is a mysterious house with a mysterious master to begin with. Then there is the phantom coach travelling the roads late at night. It gives this whole story a serious mystical feeling that left me sitting in my very well-lit room, thinking about what I’d just read. I love stories that I think about for long after I’ve turned that final page.

I really enjoyed the setting of this story. I felt like the catching of the phantom coach was a bit of a repetitive trope. But the setting… it was beautifully described and brilliantly put. It swept me away so that when I turned that final page, it took me a moment to return to reality.

<- God Grant That She Lye StillThe Old Nurse’s Story ->

Image source: Goodreads