Hauntings and Other Fantastic Tales by Vernon Lee

Read: 4 July, 2012

Hauntings is a collection of short fiction by a somewhat little known late 19th/early 20th century writer. Most of the stories don’t deal with actual hauntings, per se, but rather with weird, possibly supernatural events.

Some of the stories, like “Amour Dure,” pulled off the suspense quite well. Others, like “Dionea,” were weaker. Regardless, they all had interesting ideas behind them.

“Oke of Okehurst” and “A Wicked Voice” worked well as a pair (and kudos to the editor for putting them together) – one centring the story around art and the other around music.

All of the stories showed an impressive depth of knowledge and a brilliant mind, but they lacked “tightness” and narrative skill. It was truly a shame because I found the stories so interesting, but had to struggle through their dryness.

If you’re interested in the time period and want to read something from a more off-the-beaten-track author, I do recommend giving Hauntings a try.

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