For centuries, readers have enjoyed the delicious terror of stories about ghosts, spirits, phantoms, and things that go bump in the night. But how do women writers approach these spectral tales differently than men? You'll discover the answers in this unique collection of eighteen supernatural fables by female masters of the genre, including Edith Wharton, Joyce Carol Oates, Ruth Rendell, Shirley Jackson, and others. A brief author biography complements each story.
Set aside your images of traditional ghosts. The writers in this volume evoke spirits of place and memory instead. As the anthologist notes in his introduction, male authors tend to write stories with avenging ghosts and heart-pounding hauntings. Women are more subtle. Their stories frequently emphasize the psychological aspects of the characters, some of whom may fear going mad. In Wharton's "Kerfol," a woman is falsely accused of murdering her husband, but can she grasp the knowledge of what really killed him? Is the scholarly gent in Oates's "An Urban Paradox" accurately viewing life's dangers . . . or is the world even more perilous than he thinks? Fortified by a firm understanding of the human condition, the authors have imbued these harrowing tales with a generous helping of reality and humanity that make them utterly intriguing.
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