Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Happy birthday, E. F. Benson

Born 145 years ago today, on July 24, 1867, E. F. (Edward Frederick) Benson. Benson was a prolific author who also penned many ghost and weird stories.

“Mrs. Amworth” was published in 1924. It’s a vampire story, but it doesn’t hold to the myth that vampires can’t go about in daylight, and gives a new and interesting explanation for the undead status of a vampire.

The story is told in a traditional way, with no shocks or surprises, really, but some eerie imagery. The scene of the vampire floating outside of the window appears to be an inspiration for a similar scene in Stephen King’s Salem’s Lot.

This printing is from the 1940s pulp magazine, Famous Fantastic Mysteries, and includes a great illustration by the one-and-only Virgil Finlay.

Benson died in 1940, at age 73.

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