Creeps by Night: Chills and Thrills.New York, The John Day Company, 1931 Stock Code: 132150
NotesFirst edition, first printing, in the rare dust jacket; preceding the UK edition published by Gollancz as Modern Tales of Horror in 1932. Bleiler comments that "the circumstances of the following anthology are not known, but Hammett was a very well-read man, and it is entirely possible that he assembled it". Recent research reveals that Arkham House cofounder August Derleth played a major part in the selection (see Haefele p. 27), especially in the garnering of work by Lovecraft (an early appearance between hard covers), Donald Wandrei, and Frank Belknap Long. This is an important early anthology in the canon of weird fiction.
Gathered here are 20 short stories with an introduction by Hammett, including, among others, works by William Faulkner ("A Rose for Emily"), André Maurois ("The House"), L. A. G. Strong ("Breakdown"), Conrad Aiken ("Mr. Arcularis"), H. P. Lovecraft ("The Music of Erich Zann"), Stephen Vincent Benét ("The King of the Cats"), Donald Wandrei ("The Red Brain") and Frank Belknap Long ("A Visitor from Egypt"). Provenance: from the celebrated collection of Chicago bibliophile Larry Solomon, with his simple gold bookplate.
Octavo. Original black cloth, spine and front cover lettered and decorated in green, green endpapers. With the dust jacket. Housed in a custom blue cloth solander box.
Neat ownership inscription of one P. B. Pickard to front free endpaper. Jacket spine and front panel toned, general chips, nicks and closed-tears, spine panel with some loss at head, spine of binding faintly creased and very slightly frayed at extremities, tips rubbed, nevertheless a very good copy.
Bleiler, Supernatural Fiction 757; Haefele, John D., August Derleth Redux: The Weird Tale 1930-1971 (2009); Joshi, Lovecraft, 96; Layman A5.1.a.
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