Thursday, August 14, 2008

Valancourt to reissue Richard Marsh's
The Beetle.

"Mr. Marsh has as prettily gruesome an imagination as any writer of sensational fiction." —To-day.

Kansas City's Valancourt Books has announced that it will shortly reissue Richard Marsh's The Beetle (1897), which created a sensation with its supernatural account of an Egyptian sect that seeks to use the powers of someone who can turn into a large beetle (pre-Kafka, of course).

Marsh was the pseudonym for Richard Bernard Heldmann (1857-1915); Valancourt has reprinted a number of his mysteries and ghost stories. Talent obviously runs in the family, for Marsh's grandson was the horror writer Robert Aickman.

And for those weary of the same names on the bestseller list, Valancourt's list of its top sellers for July provides a refreshing alternative:
1. Clermont by Regina Maria Roche (first publ. 1798)
2. Castle of Wolfenbach by Eliza Parsons (first publ. 1793)
3. The Italian by Ann Radcliffe (first publ. 1797)
4. The Sorrows of Satan by Marie Corelli (first publ. 1895)
5. (tie) The Fate of Fenella by Arthur Conan Doyle, Bram Stoker, et al. (first publ. 1892)
5. (tie) The Garden God by Forrest Reid (first publ. 1905)

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