Gaslit Horror


Published in 2008 by Dover.

Prepare yourself for a spine-tingling journey into the heart of darkness. In this bone-chilling collection, you’ll encounter thirteen long-lost tales of terror by famed authors. Whether the setting is an English village, the Brazilian countryside, or the Barbados coast, the madness lurking beneath the beauty of each location will haunt your imagination long after the last page is turned.

In Dick Donovan’s “The Mystic Spell,” a young man finds the love of his life in Rio, but the deadly curse of an old crone could destroy their dreams if they marry. “The Black Reaper” by Bernard Capes, takes place in 1665 during The Great Plague, a time of wild fear and confusion. When the residents of an English village come face-to-face with the deadly scythe of the Black Reaper, only one daring act of courage can save their lives. In “A Tropical Horror” by William Hope Hodgson, the crew of a ship undergoes a series of attacks by a giant, eel-like sea monster. Will the young apprentice who relates this story survive?

Filled with a mix of the macabre, the mysterious, the supernatural, and the sinister, this anthology is Victorian suspense at its finest.


The Pride of the Corbyns – Isabella Banks
Maw-Sayah – Charles J. Mansford
The Mystery of the Felwyn Tunnel – L. T. Meade and Robert Eustace
The Black Reaper – Bernard Capes
The Devil’s Manuscript – S. Levett-Yeats
The Mystic Spell – Dick Donovan
Nightmare-Touch – Lafcadio Hearn
Un Peu d’Amour – Robert W. Chambers
The Spirit of the Fjord – John C. Shannon
The Strange Story of Northavon Priory – Frank Frankfort Moore
A Tropical Horror – William Hope Hodgson
The Woman with a Candle – W. Bourne Cooke
Mrs Rivers’s Journal – Perceval Landon


This anthology, and the 2006 Gaslit Nightmares, also published by Dover, were new editions containing the stories first published in Hugh Lamb’s acclaimed Gaslit Nightmares (1988) and Gaslit Nightmares 2 (1991). 

An eBook version was published in 2012.


Another interesting set of Victorian/Edwardian horror stories from Dover Publications. This one has a few tales set in England, but others are set at sea, on a Norwegian fjord, during the Great Plague of 1665 in London, the jungles of Brazil, Barbados, among other times and places. Hugh Lamb does the usual interesting job matching unknown stories from known authors with unknown stories from unknown authors — and these are some of the best in the collection.

My favorite stories were Mrs. G. Linnaeus Banks’s “The Pride of the Corbyns” with its race prejudice stretching beyond the grave; S. Levett Yeats’s “The Devil’s Manuscript” about a book publisher having interesting dealings with Satan; and Frank Frankfort Moore’s “The Strange Story of Northavon Priory.” I had never heard of any of these authors before.

There are treasures aplenty in the Dover horror collections.

Goodreads Reviewer

Interesting collection of Victorian/Edwardian horror, focused on stories that haven’t been frequently reprinted. Some definitely work better than others but I think this is worth picking up if you’re an fan of the horror of the time period.

Goodreads Reviewer

Other Editions

Paperback – Published in 1988 by Futura

Paperback – Published in 1991 by Futura

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