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Valancourt Books

Valancourt Books

Valancourt Books is an independent small press specializing in the rediscovery of rare, neglected, and out-of-print fiction. 

 

Childgrave (1982) by Ken Greenhall

New Release

 

Available in hardcover, paperback and ebook (audiobook coming soon). “Writing in Shirley Jackson’s precise, sharp, chilly prose, Greenhall delivers a slippery book that can’t be pinned down, all about spectral photography, little dead girls, snowbound small towns, and the disquieting proposition that maybe God is not civilized.” - Grady Hendrix, author of Paperbacks from Hell.

 

 

Book Description

When photographer Jonathan Brewster’s four-year-old daughter Joanne tells him about her new invisible friends, he doesn’t think too much about it. But then he sees them for himself: weird and uncanny images of the dead appearing in his photographs. The apparitions seem to have some connection to Childgrave, a remote village in upstate New York with a deadly secret dating back three centuries. Jonathan and Joanne feel themselves oddly drawn to Childgrave, but will they survive the horrors that await them there?

The third novel by Ken Greenhall (1928-2014), whose works are receiving renewed attention as neglected classics of modern horror, Childgrave (1982) is a slow-burn chiller that ranks among Greenhall’s best.

Reviews

“Writing in Shirley Jackson’s precise, sharp, chilly prose, Greenhall delivers a slippery book that can’t be pinned down, all about spectral photography, little dead girls, snowbound small towns, and the disquieting proposition that maybe God is not civilized.” - Grady Hendrix, author of Paperbacks from Hell

“A very well-orchestrated, eerie tale.” - Publishers Weekly

Now available:

Hardcover
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK
Paperback
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK
eBook
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK 

Reblogged
#14 Follow Friday with book bloggers: Char's Horror Corner [Nominated]

 

Halloween is coming near. The spooky time requires a special guest and we think that Charlene from Char’s Horror Corner is the perfect one for the Halloween Follow Friday interview. 

 

Check out what Charlene is reading and follow her blog Char’s Horror Corner on BookLikes http://charlene.booklikes.com

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How did your book love begin? 

 

It started early on! There weren’t a lot of other children around where I grew up, but there were a lot of elderly people. The bookmobile would come around so that those without transportation were able to get something to read, and in the summers I would stand in line with them. I loved to check out mysteries from Agatha Christie and other authors, and then I discovered Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and the great Edgar Allan Poe.

 

You’ve reviewed over 800 books on your BL blog. What do you enjoy about book blogging the most? 

 

What I enjoy the most about blogging/reviewing is giving and getting book recommendations. I just love when someone tries a book I recommended and they like it. Conversely, I always feel bad when a person tries a book I recommended and they do NOT like it.

 

 

You’re a horror book lover. Why this genre is so special for you? What do you cherish the most about it? 

 

Horror is often about outsiders and being an outsider, that always appealed to me. I felt like an outsider during most of my time in junior high and in high school and I related to those kinds of stories. What I cherish the most about the horror genre is the community. I help moderate a group on Goodreads, (Horror Aficionados), and we now have nearly 13,500 members. They are the best bunch of people, authors and readers both, they’re supportive, smart and funny and they welcome everyone! What’s not to cherish about that?

 

If not horror, than what? Do you often switch to another genre or is horror your ultimate love?

 

I do like to switch things up at times. I love to read biographies and autobiographies, as well as classics, mysteries, thrillers and true crime. Horror is my ultimate love though, and I never stray away for too long.

 

 

There are many sub-genres of horror. Can you tell more about them to our readers? 

 

As you’ve stated, there are many! These days, my favorites lean more towards Quiet Horror. This is horror that generally does not feature a lot of blood and guts. No slashers or torturing or things like that. It’s heavier on atmosphere, building dread and those things caught out of the corner of your eye.

I also enjoy Cosmic Horror. Now this can include parts of H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos and the monsters he created, or it can be more generic and just reflect the cold, unfeeling universe and the lowly place of mankind within it. I also enjoy ghost stories, creature features, (fun books with imaginative monsters, and usually faced paced killing), and haunted house tales.

 

Name your Top 3 horror books.

 

Yeah, that’s too hard! Today, my answer is:

1. Boy's Life by Robert R. McCammon  , which is not exactly horror, but coming-of-age dark fiction.

2. It or The Stand by Stephen King  .

3. 'Salem's Lot by Stephen King  

 

Boy's Life - Robert R. McCammonIt - Stephen KingThe Stand - Stephen King'Salem's Lot - Stephen King

 

Are there any particular titles you’re impatiently waiting for this fall/winter season?

  

Yes, I’ve been waiting for Joe Hill’s latest title, Strange Weather and I finally got it on Saturday at the Merrimack Valley Halloween Book Festival. Joe Hill appeared there and his fans were able to purchase copies prior to the book officially going on sale 10.24.17.

 

Read the relation from The Third Annual Merrimack Valley Book Festival!

 

 

We’ve noticed the horror audiobooks on your BookLikes bookshelf, recently you’ve also interviewed a horror story narrator -- do you prefer reading or listening to horror stories? Is there any difference in experiencing the novels? 

 

I prefer reading to listening, actually. In a very few cases though, a worthy narrator can elevate my reading experience. This has happened on a few occasions. The first was when I listened to Kate Mulgrew narrate Joe Hill’s NOS4A2. Her narration brought the story even more alive than Hill already had and that changed my original rating from when I read the book of 4/5 stars to ALL the stars.

NOS4A2: A Novel - Joe Hill,Kate Mulgrew Bravo to both Joe Hill and Kate Mulgrew for the hours of pleasure that is the audible book NOS4A2! Read a full review ->

 

Blackwater: The Complete Saga - Michael McDowell,Matt GodfreyThe second time this happened is actually still happening, with Matt Godfrey’s narration of Michael McDowell’s Blackwater. Since this saga is set in Alabama, and Matt is from Alabama, the accents and voices have really come alive for me, even more so than when I read the books a few years back. It’s amazing! (And HE’S amazing!)

 

The most wonderful horror author(s) is/are… 

 

Stephen King, Robert McCammon, and Joe Hill.

 

 

What are your three favorite book covers? 

1. Boy's Life by Robert R. McCammon  (see link above, on Question 6)

2. The Valancourt Book of Horror Stories: Volume Two.

3. Last Train from Perdition by Robert R. McCammon 

 

 

Boy's Life - Robert R. McCammonThe Valancourt Book of Horror Stories: Volume Two - Nevil Shute,Mary Elizabeth Braddon,Michael P. Kube-McDowellLast Train from Perdition (I Travel By Night) - Robert R. McCammon

 

How do you pick another book to read? 

 

Generally, my reading is booked far in advance. I have this crazy urge to haunt sites like NetGalley and Edelweiss for advance review copies of books. I generally try to read them by the publication dates, so that usually determines what I’m going to read next. I had challenged myself to read 40 books that I ALREADY OWN this year, and I’ve only read 7. That’s because I just can’t stop myself from browsing the books that are coming out soon and requesting them. I just want to read ALL the books.

 

A paper book or an e-book? 

Both!

 

Halloween is coming near. Can you suggest three titles to juice up a Halloween party? 

 

1.Haunted Nights, edited by Ellen Datlow and Lisa Morton. This is an excellent collection of short stories all connected by Halloween.

2. The Halloween Children by Brian James Freeman and Norman Prentiss. This is a fun little tale about what happens when you choose not to give out candy on Halloween, (among other things!).

3. The Valancourt Book of Horror Stories volume 1 or 2. Or better yet, both! These are excellent tales that have rarely or never been reprinted since their original release.

 

Featuring authors like Michael McDowell and Stephen Gregory, everyone should be able to find a pleasing story within.

 

Haunted Nights - Ellen Datlow,Lisa MortonThe Halloween Children - Brian James Freeman,Norman PrentissThe Valancourt Book of Horror Stories - Francis King,John Blackburn,Richard Marsh,Michael McDowell,Stephen GregoryThe Valancourt Book of Horror Stories: Volume Two - Nevil Shute,Mary Elizabeth Braddon,Michael P. Kube-McDowell

 

What’s your reading spot? We’d love to see the photos :)

 

Anywhere, really, but my favorites are in my recliner, by the pool, or in what I optimistically call my library.

 

 

 

Your favorite quote?

We are born able to sing to birds and read the clouds and see our destiny in grains of sand. But then we get the magic educated right out of our souls. We get it churched out, spanked out, washed out, and combed out. We get put on the straight and narrow and told to be responsible. Told to act our age. Told to grow up, for God's sake. And you know why we were told that? Because the people doing the telling were afraid of our wildness and youth, and because the magic we knew made them ashamed and sad of what they'd allowed to wither in themselves. - Robert McCammon, from Boy's Life

 

If you could meet one literary character, who would it be? 

 

I think I would like to sit down with Mary Love from Blackwater by Michael McDowell. I would love to hear her Alabama accent and ask her why she acted the way she did as the matriarch of her Southern family.

 

Shelfie time! Please share your home library photos :)

 

 

Thank you!

 

*

 

Missed previous Follow Friday talks? Use ffwithbookbloggers tag or click the catch up links:

 

 

You can nominate your blogger friends to the Follow Friday interview! Click here and leave the URL address in the comment section.

 

See you next Friday!

Reblogged from BookLikes
The Travelling Grave and Other Stories (1948) by L.P. Hartley

Now available! Though best known for his classic novel of Edwardian childhood The Go-Between, L. P. Hartley was also a master of supernatural and macabre fiction, the best of which is collected in The Travelling Grave and Other Stories.

This volume demonstrates Hartley’s versatility, ranging from traditional ghost stories like ‘Feet Foremost’ and ‘The Cotillon’ to the wickedly black humour of the horror masterpieces ‘The Travelling Grave’ and ‘The Killing Bottle’. Originally published in 1948 and long out of print, this collection features twelve of Hartley’s finest tales, presented in this edition with a new introduction by John Howard.

 

 

Now available:

Hardcover
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK
Paperback
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK
eBook
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK 

The Devil in a Domino (1897) by Chas L'Epine

Now available! An extremely rare book, one of the earliest novels inspired by the Jack the Ripper murders, THE DEVIL IN A DOMINO (1897) by "Chas L'Epine". One contemporary critic called it “a gruesome compound of madness and butchery, with nameless horrors in the background. No sane person could find pleasure in reading such a story … it would have been better had it not been written.” Sounds like our kind of book!

 

Features a new introduction by Simon Stern and a colorized reproduction of the original cover art.

 

 

Book Description

The offspring of a profligate scoundrel and a drunken circus performer, Aleck Severn was born inside a prison’s walls after his mother stabbed his father to death. Severn shows no outward signs of inheriting his parents’ faults: a handsome, affable man about town, he is popular with his friends and beloved by his wife Marianne. But she begins to suspect her husband has a dark secret. What is he doing during those long nights alone at a remote house? And what connection could it have to the bodies of murdered women being found around London?

Reviews

“[A] peculiarly repulsive piece of writing, indicative of the low and morbid type of so-called literature which is purveyed to a half-educated constituency.” – Edinburgh Evening News

“In its diabolical horrors it recalls the ghastly series of crimes supposed to have been the work of ‘Jack the Ripper.’ Those who like to sup on sensation will find all they want in The Devil in a Domino.” – Dundee Evening Telegraph

Now available:

Hardcover
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK
Paperback
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK
eBook
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK 

The Valancourt Book of Horror Stories: Volume Two

Now up for preorder: The Valancourt Book of Horror Stories: Volume Two. Features a never-before-published ghost story by Nevil Shute, a brand-new tale by Stephen Gregory, and twelve more scarce tales by Valancourt authors, including Michael McDowell, Bernard Taylor, Beverley Nichols, Isabel Colegate, Basil Copper, R. Chetwynd-Hayes and more! Preorder direct from us and receive it before the official Oct. 2 on-sale date. The complete story list below.

 

 

Table of Contents

 

Foreword by James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle
Samhain by Bernard Taylor
The Bell by Beverley Nichols
The Elemental by R. Chetwynd-Hayes
Herself by M. E. Braddon
The Creatures in the House by Robert Westall
November the Thirteenth by Russell Thorndike
Halley's Passing by Michael McDowell
The Nice Boys by Isabel Colegate
The Watcher by the Threshold by John Buchan
Tudor Windows by Nevil Shute
No Sin by John Metcalfe
The Dice by Thomas De Quincey
Camera Obscura by Basil Copper
The Boys Who Wouldn't Wake Up by Stephen Gregory

Now available for pre-order
October 2nd release

Hardcover
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK
Paperback
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK
eBook
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK 

Hell Hound (1977) by Ken Greenhall

AUDIOBOOK now available! ‘An unsung classic of the bizarre that ranks with Crash and The Wasp Factory.’ - Fright.com. The basis for the acclaimed 1989 film Baxter, Ken Greenhall’s utterly chilling and long-unobtainable HELL HOUND (1977) has earned a reputation as a lost classic of horror fiction. Narrated by two-time Audie Award winning narrator R.C. Bray. #kengreenhall #hellhound  #baxter #horror #horrorfiction #horrorofinstagram #1970s #audiobooks #audible

 

More info here: Hell Hound

 

 

 

Bombardier (1944) by Stephen Gilbert

With the release of Christopher Nolan's new hit film DUNKIRK, we thought we'd highlight a title from 2016 you might have missed, Stephen Gilbert's BOMBARDIER (1944). Gilbert, best known as the author of horror classic RATMAN'S NOTEBOOKS (the inspiration for the WILLARD films), took part in the Dunkirk evacuation and describes the experience firsthand in his fascinating, thrilling novel. Check it out here: http://www.valancourtbooks.com/bombardier-1944.html

 

A Book of the Dead (1984) by John Blackburn

New Release

 

Why is someone willing to kill in order to get their hands on every copy of Men of Courage, a rare but worthless book? That's the mystery at the heart of John Blackburn's rarest thriller, A BOOK OF THE DEAD (1984), long unavailable and republished now for the first time.

 

 

Book Description

When a veteran book dealer pays an exorbitant sum at auction for a copy of Men of Courage, a worthless book about famous heroic deeds, his colleagues believe he has lost his mind. But when he is found dead and the book goes missing, it appears something more sinister may be going on. In fact, someone has been buying, stealing, or destroying every known copy of the book. Bookseller Tom Mayne, with the help of the lovely heiress Janet Vale and the egotistical adventurer J. Moldon-Mott, is determined to find out why – and to stop a madman before he kills again!

John Blackburn (1923-1993) was regarded as one of the great British mystery and thriller writers of his time. This first-ever reprint of A Book of the Dead (1984), his penultimate and rarest novel, includes a new introduction by Greg Gbur. Fifteen other thrillers, mysteries, and horror novels by Blackburn are also available from Valancourt.

Reviews

‘He can be depended upon to sustain swift, sure, exciting, and absorbing stories ... undoubtedly one of England’s best practicing novelists in the tradition of the thriller novel.’ - St. James Guide to Crime & Mystery Writers

‘He is certainly the best British novelist in his field and deserves the widest recognition.’ - Penguin Encyclopedia of Horror and the Supernatural

Now available worldwide:

Paperback
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK

eBook
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK 

Happy birthday Henry Chapman Mercer!

 

Henry Chapman Mercer
(June 24, 1856 - March 9, 1930)

Henry Chapman Mercer was born in 1856 to a well-to-do family in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. As a young man he travelled in Europe and attended Harvard University from 1875 to 1879. Afterwards, he studied law and was admitted to the bar but never practiced, returning to Europe to travel extensively across the continent.

Towards the end of his life, Mercer published November Night Tales (1928), a collection of stories reflecting his lifelong interest in history and archaeology, his appreciation for castles and gothic fiction, and his Romantic imagination.

November Night Tales sale! Now through the end of the month:

November Night Tales by Henry Chapman Mercer
Paperback $10 + shipping, regularly $16.99
eBook $1.99, regularly $6.99
Purchase on our website using Paypal
 
Audiobook out now: Gilded Needles (1980) by Michael McDowell

New audiobook! R.C. Bray, whose performance of Michael McDowell's The Elementals earned an Audie Award nomination, is back with a brilliant rendition of McDowell's harrowing story of revenge, GILDED NEEDLES! Now available worldwide on Amazon and Audible.

We have a limited number of promotional codes to give away, so if anyone is interested in reviewing the audiobook, please send us a private message on our Facebook page. More on the book here: Gilded Needles

 

LGBT eBook Sale for Pride Month!

June is LGBT Pride Month, and to celebrate, we're offering a 2-for-1 deal all month long on all ebooks in our LGBT literature catalog! It's easy: purchase any LGBT ebook using our Paypal button, then send us an email or message to let us know which other ebook (of equal or lesser price) you'd like for free! Applies only to ebooks purchased from the Valancourt website (not Amazon). Complete list of titles over on our Rediscovered LGBT Literature page.

 

Review Copies Available!

We have a bunch of Audible download codes to give away for one of our newest releases - just send us a message on our Facebook page with your email address, and whether you're in the US or UK. Once you've listened, we'd be grateful if you post a review to let us know what you think!

 

 

“A whirlwind of horror!” – Library Journal

“An unsettling piece of work.” – New York Times

 

Book Description

“If you were to go into your bedroom tonight – perhaps by candlelight – and sit quietly before the large mirror, you might see what I have seen. Sit patiently, looking neither at yourself nor at the glass. You might notice that the image is not yours, but that of an exceptional person who lived at some other time . . .”

The image in the mirror of fourteen-year-old Elizabeth Cuttner is that of the fey and long-dead Frances, who introduces Elizabeth to her chilling world of the supernatural. Through Frances, Elizabeth learns what it is to wield power – power of a kind that is malevolent and seemingly invincible. Power that begins with the killing of her parents . . .

 

 

 

Audiobook out now: Elizabeth (1976) by Ken Greenhall

New release!

 

One of our best recent titles, Ken Greenhall's Elizabeth: A Novel of the Unnatural , is now available worldwide as an audiobook! Greenhall's tale about an evil young woman who may be a witch makes for terrific listening and is brilliantly narrated by Becca Grabowski.

“A whirlwind of horror!” – Library Journal

“An unsettling piece of work.” – New York Times

 

 

Book Description

“If you were to go into your bedroom tonight – perhaps by candlelight – and sit quietly before the large mirror, you might see what I have seen. Sit patiently, looking neither at yourself nor at the glass. You might notice that the image is not yours, but that of an exceptional person who lived at some other time . . .”

The image in the mirror of fourteen-year-old Elizabeth Cuttner is that of the fey and long-dead Frances, who introduces Elizabeth to her chilling world of the supernatural. Through Frances, Elizabeth learns what it is to wield power – power of a kind that is malevolent and seemingly invincible. Power that begins with the killing of her parents . . .

Now available:

Paperback
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK
eBook
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK
Audiobook
Amazon US | Amazon UK | Audible
New Audiobook Releases!

Check out our newest audiobook releases! You can view our complete audiobook catalogue over on our website.

 

 

Offbeat: Uncollected Stories by Richard Matheson
Narrated by Peter Berkrot, R.C. Bray, Scott Brick, William Dufris, Matt Godfrey, Jeffrey Kafer, Mike Ortego, Anna Parker-Naples, Elizabeth Wiley, Eric Martin, Sean Runnette, Caitlin Davies

“Perhaps no author living is as responsible for chilling a generation with tantalizing nightmare visions.” - The New York Times

“The author who influenced me the most as a writer was Richard Matheson.” - Stephen King

In the aptly titled Offbeat, Richard Matheson, a modern master of strange fiction, offers thirteen excursions into the unsettling and bizarre. In these stories you will encounter a major league pitcher with a horrific secret for his astonishing success; an ordinary man who wakes to find himself in a silent, empty world; a death row prisoner with an extraordinary explanation for his innocence; and a novelist whose fictional creations transcend the printed page.

 

 

The Late Breakfasters (1964) by Robert Aickman, narrated by Matt Godfrey

“Reading Robert Aickman is like watching a magician work.” – Neil Gaiman

“Robert Aickman at his best was this century's most profound writer of what we call horror stories.” – Peter Straub

In The Late Breakfasters, young Griselda de Reptonville is invited by Mrs. Hatch to a house party at her country estate, Beams (which, incidentally, is haunted). There, amidst an array of eccentric characters and bizarre happenings, she will meet the love of her life, Louise. But when their short-lived relationship is cruelly cut short, Griselda must embark on a quest to recapture the happiness she has lost.

 

 

Nightmares and Geezenstacks (1961) by Fredric Brown, narrated by Matt Godfrey

“Might have been written by O. Henry in a black mood; alternately comic, horrifying [and] clever.” – Science Fiction & Fantasy Book Review

“A distinctive and unique voice...one of the genre's most incisive satirists and outstanding innovators.” – Library Journal

“One of the best pulp writers.” – Booklist

One of the great pulp writers, Fredric Brown (1906-1972) combined a flair for the horrific, a quirky sense of humor, and a wild imagination, and published many classic novels in the mystery and science fiction genres. But he was also a master of the "short-short story", tales only a page or two in length, but hard-hitting and with a wicked twist at the end. Nightmares and Geezenstacks (1961) collects 47 short gems by Brown, ranging from science fiction to noir crime to horror, including the chilling and unforgettable "The Geezenstacks". Long unobtainable, Brown's classic collection is available for the first time in almost 40 years and is sure to please both longtime fans and those who are discovering this brilliant writer for the first time.

Hell Hound (1977) by Ken Greenhall

New release! Don't be fooled by the schlocky title: Ken Greenhall's Hell Hound (1977) is a lost classic of literary horror whose titular canine, according to Too Much Horror Fiction, "makes Cujo seem like a clumsy amateur". Narrated from the point of view of a sociopathic bull terrier on a homicidal search for the perfect master, Greenhall's novel was adapted for the French black comedy film Baxter (1989). Features a new intro by Grady Hendrix, author of Horrorstör and My Best Friend's Exorcism.

 

 

Book Description

‘What are the possibilities of my strength? That is a thought I have never had before. What if some morning as the old woman stood at the head of the staircase she were suddenly to feel a weight thrusting against the back of her legs? What if she were to lunge forward, grasping at the air, striking her thin skull against the edge of a stair? What would become of me if she were found unmoving at the bottom of the stairway?’

Such are the thoughts of Baxter, a sociopathic bull terrier on the hunt for the perfect master, as he contemplates the demise of his first victim. The basis for the acclaimed 1989 film Baxter, Ken Greenhall’s utterly chilling and long-unobtainable Hell Hound (1977) has earned a reputation as a lost classic of horror fiction. This first-ever reissue includes a new introduction by Grady Hendrix.

Available worldwide:

Paperback
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK
eBook
Website | Amazon US | Amazon UK

Offbeat: Uncollected Stories by Richard Matheson

Our much-anticipated collection of rare Richard Matheson short stories, OFFBEAT, newly introduced by David J. Schow, is now up for preorder worldwide for paperback and Kindle! The release date is Feb. 28. Visit our website for pre-order links.