Gothic! Ten Original Dark Tales
Gothic! Ten Original Dark Tales
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Annotation: Collection of ten short fantasy and horror stories by popular Young Adult authors.
Catalog Number: #121348
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
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Special Formats: Inventory Sale Inventory Sale
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Copyright Date: 2004
Edition Date: 2006
Pages: 241 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-7636-2737-2 Perma-Bound: 0-605-01399-3
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-7636-2737-9 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-01399-5
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 2004045188
Dimensions: 21 cm.
Subject Heading:
Supernatural. Fiction.
Language: English
Horn Book
These ten terrific tales are guaranteed to raise the hairs on your neck--and just possibly a scream in your throat. The well-balanced collection ranges in tone from dark humor to eerie mystery to true terror. Contributors include Neil Gaiman, Garth Nix, Joan Aiken, M. T. Anderson, and Vivian Vande Velde. Intrepid readers will relish the delicious shivers--but may want to keep the lights on.
Kirkus Reviews
By turns lyrical and bleak and leavened at times with grim, bleak humor or goofiness, the ten stories in this anthology either entertain or terrorize—or both. Although the title conjures up a vision of Victoria Holtlike heroines in peril, Noyes has assembled an exciting variety of dark fantasy and horror stories—all far more sinister and less predictable than formulaic "gothic" tales. After a rather tame start with Joan Aiken's Lungewater —that provides standard gothic fare—terror takes over. Vivian VandeVelde, M.T. Anderson, Gregory Maguire, Garth Nix, and others offer ghosts and vampires, ghouls and sorcerers, and monstrous family members to quicken the pulse and provide frissons of fear. Consistently well-written, these stories will appeal to many fantasy readers and all horror readers and they will lead to exploration of other writings by the authors. The level of terror, violence, and overt sexual content mark this book for older readers—who will enjoy it mightily. (Fiction YA)
Publishers Weekly
Gothic!: Ten Original Dark Tales, edited by Deborah Noyes, mines the macabre with new tales by celebrated authors that include Joan Aiken, Neil Gaiman and Garth Nix. In Vivian Vande Velde's """"Morgan Roehmar's Boys,"""" a haunted hayride is the apropos setting for the ghosts of the title murderer's victims and revenge and in """"The Prank"""" by Gregory Maguire, a wayward teen discovers a horrific family secret. .
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up-This uniformly well-written collection features short stories by noted young adult authors such as M. T. Anderson, Caitl'n R. Kiernan, Garth Nix, Celia Rees, Janni Lee Simner, and Barry Yourgrau. From Joan Aiken's more traditional tale about a ghost haunting a river in the gloomy countryside to Gregory Maguire's contemporary offering about a teenage delinquent forced to live with an elderly relative who has a secret locked in the attic, almost all of these stories evoke a shivery delight. Vivian Vande Velde's shocking and scary piece features the ghost of a psychopathic serial killer who looks like a teenager and kills an unsuspecting girl posing as a "dead body" at a haunted hayride. Neil Gaiman's selection lampoons the classic gothic scenario of a terrified, nightgown-clad heroine running away from a brooding manor house and will have readers laughing out loud in recognition. These varied tales take place in the distant past and in the high-tech present. Some are humorous while others have surprising twists or are reminiscent of classic fairy tales full of malevolent characters, but all share a love of the surreal or supernatural. Noyes's insightful introduction defines what a gothic tale is and includes information about the authors and the origins of their stories. A sophisticated, thought-provoking, and gripping read.-Sharon Rawlins, Piscataway Public Library, NJ Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Starred Review ALA Booklist
*Starred Review* The slightly generic cover design and forthrightly generic title of this collection may lead many readers to expect shrieking heroines, dreary castles, lurking vampires, and other tropes of the gothic tradition. They wouldn't be wrong, but they wouldn't be exactly right, either. Sure, many of these original tales, by the likes of Joan Aiken, Neil Gaiman, Gregory Maguire, and Vivian Vande Velde, ape the vocabulary of the genre (necromancer, escritoire) and play with its abundant cliches (a house has as many curses as it has spiders and silverfish). But the maidens in peril still have to do their homework; twisted events are as likely to transpire in American suburbs as in dreary castles (in M. T. Anderson's exceptional The Dead Watch, shapeshifting witches eat Triscuits and use ATMs); vampires whine about the garlic in the spaghetti sauce and then attack their babysitters. Ideal for high-school literature classes studying Shelley or Stoker (Gaiman's smirking contribution, which toys with genre definitions, would work particularly well in the classroom), this collection also provides an excellent opportunity to introduce fans of Koontz, Rice, and King to some of the most imaginative exponents of YA dark fantasy.
Word Count: 44,704
Reading Level: 5.4
Interest Level: 7-12
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 5.4 / points: 7.0 / quiz: 79027 / grade: Upper Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:5.2 / points:12.0 / quiz:Q35558
Lexile: 850L
Guided Reading Level: Z
Somewhere in the night, someone was writing.


Her feet scrunched the gravel as she ran wildly up the tree-lined drive. Her heart was pounding in her chest; her lungs felt as if they were bursting, heaving breath after breath of the cold night air. Her eyes fixed on the house ahead, the single light in the topmost room drawing her toward it like a moth to a candle flame. Above her, and away in the deep forest behind the house, night things whooped and skrarked. From the road behind her, she heard something scream, briefly — a small animal that had been the victim of some beast of prey, she hoped, but could not be certain.

She ran as if the legions of hell were close on her heels, and spared not even a glance behind her until she reached the porch of the old mansion. In the moon's pale light, the white pillars seemed skeletal, like the bones of a great beast. She clung to the wooden door frame, gulping air, staring back down the long driveway as if she were waiting for something, and then she rapped on the door — timorously at first and then harder. The rapping echoed through the house. She imagined, from the echo that came back to her, that, far away, someone was knocking on another door, muffled and dead.

"Please!" she called. "If there's someone here — anyone — please let me in. I beseech you. I implore you." Her voice sounded strange to her ears.

The flickering light in the topmost room faded and disappeared, to reappear in successive descending windows. One person, then, with a candle. The light vanished into the depths of the house. She tried to catch her breath. It seemed like an age passed before she heard footsteps on the other side of the door and spied a chink of candlelight through a crack in the ill-fitting door frame.

"Hello?" she said.

The voice, when it spoke, was dry as old bone — a desiccated voice, redolent of crackling parchment and musty grave-hangings. "Who calls?" it said. "Who knocks? Who calls, on this night of all nights?"

The voice gave her no comfort. She looked out at the night that enveloped the house, then pulled herself straight, tossed her raven locks, and said, in a voice that, she hoped, betrayed no fear, "'Tis I, Amelia Earnshawe, recently orphaned and now on my way to take up a position as a governess to the two small children — a boy and a girl — of Lord Falconmere, whose cruel glances I found, during our interview in his London residence, both repellent and fascinating, but whose aquiline face haunts my dreams."

"And what do you do here, then, at this house, on this night of all nights? Falconmere Castle lies a good twenty leagues on from here, on the other side of the moors."

"The coachman — an ill-natured fellow, and a mute, or so he pretended to be, for he formed no words but made his wishes known only by grunts and gobblings — reined in his team a mile or so back down the road, or so I judge, and then he shewed me by gestures that he would go no farther, and that I was to alight. When I did refuse to do so, he pushed me roughly from the carriage to the cold earth, then, whipping the poor horses into a frenzy, he clattered off the way he had come, taking my several bags and my trunk with him. I called after him, but he did not return, and it seemed to me that a deeper darkness stirred in the forest gloom behind me. I saw the light in your window and I . . . I . . ." She was able to keep up her pretense of bravery no longer, and she began to sob.

"Your father," came the voice from the other side of the door. "Would he have been the Honorable Hubert Earnshawe?"

Amelia choked back her tears. "Yes. Yes, he was."

"And you — you say you are an orphan?"

She thought of her father, of his tweed jacket, as the maelstrom seized him and whipped him onto the rocks and away from her forever.

"He died trying to save my mother's life. They both were drowned."

She heard the dull chunking of a key being turned in a lock, then twin booms as iron bolts were drawn back. "Welcome, then, Miss Amelia Earnshawe. Welcome to your inheritance, in this house without a name. Aye, welcome — on this night of all nights." The door opened.


GOTHIC!: TEN ORIGINAL DARK TALES edited by Deborah Wayshak. Copyright (c) 2006 by Deborah Wayshak. Published by Candlewick Press, Inc., Cambridge, MA

Excerpted from Gothic!: Ten Original Dark Tales
All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

"Get ready to sleep with the lights on!" — Girls' Life

A lovesick count and the ghost of his brutalized servant...a serial killer who defies death...a house with a violent mind of its own and another that holds a grotesque secret within its peeling walls. Here are witches who feast on faces, changeling rites of passage, a venerable vampire contemplating his end, and a fanged brat who drains the patience of a bumbling teenage boy. Here too are a flamboyant young novelist in search of a subject more compelling than his own eerie existence and the daughter of a sorcerer fighting to free her lover — and her will — from sinister bonds. Enter the world of Gothic!, a celebration of the literary form made famous by such writers as Mary Shelley and Edgar Allan Poe. 

With chilling stories by: 
Joan Aiken 
M. T. Anderson 
Neil Gaiman 
Caitlín R. Kiernan 
Gregory Maguire 
Garth Nix 
Celia Rees 
Janni Lee Simner 
Vivian Vande Velde 
Barry Yourgrau

Lungewater / Joan Aiken
Morgan Roehmar's boys / Vivian Vande Velde
Watch and wake / M.T. Anderson
Forbidden brides of the faceless slaves in the nameless house of the night of dread desire / Neil Gaiman
The dead and the moonstruck / Caitlin R. Kiernan
Have no fear, Crumpot is here! / Barry Yourgrau
Stone tower / Janni Lee Simner
The prank / Gregory Maguire
Writing on the wall / Celia Rees
Endings / Garth Nix.

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