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The Museum of Horrors Hardcover – October, 2001

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Leisure Books; Special edition (October 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0843949287
  • ISBN-13: 978-0843949285
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.3 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,192,251 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 11, 2003
Format: Hardcover
"The Museum of Horrors" contains all the usual strengths and weaknesses of original short story anthologies. There is enormous variety here; each piece is quite different from all the others. There is also a nice balance of well-known, first-rank figures with newer and lesser-known writers. The book has recently been given a World Fantasy Award for Best Anthology, so it is certainly successful in the main.
In truth, however, it is an uneven volume--as original anthologies almost always are. The best stories here are superb. I would rank Tom Piccirilli's "Those Vanished I Recognize" at the very top--a story which is not only genuinely horrific, but also packs a strong emotional wallop. Susan Fry's "The Impressionists in Winter" is a strong entry in the category of traditional ghost story, and "The Museum of Dr. Moses" by Joyce Carol Oates effectively mines the author's "grotesque" vein familiar from her numerous collections (though with a rather pat conclusion, very unusual for this writer). Numerous other tales, including Th. Metzger's "Transorbital Love Probe," Charles L. Grant's "Whose Ghosts These Are," and S.P. Somtow's "The Bird Catcher," are very effective and will have their fans.
But it must be said that several of these tales are quite simply substandard--and at least a couple, including Peter Atkins's "King of Outer Space" and Melanie Tem's "Piano Bar Blues," are hardly horror at all. Among the weak tales are William F. Nolan's "In Real Life," a gimmicky and unconvincing experiment in the use of multiple narrators, and Gordon Linzner's "Author, Author," a silly and predictable piece: if you're a fan of horror fiction, you've read this story dozens of times before--or rather, stories indistinguishible from it.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Shannon Riley on February 7, 2002
Format: Hardcover
The Museum of Horrors contains a treasure trove of great offerings from some of the best horror writers today. Eighteen original stories from writers like Peter Straub, Joyce Carol Oates, Ramsey Campbell, Tom Piccirilli and others make this a superb collection.
"Hammerhead" by the late Richard Layman, who was President of the Horror Writer's Association, is a dark comedy that gets inside the head of a serial killer, a very disturbing place to be.
Tom Piccirilli's "Those Vanished I Recognize" is about a man on a journey to nowhere, and Hammond, in Ramsey Campbell's "Worse than Bones," has a thing about old books -- or is it the other way around?
Perhaps my favorite of these dark gems, is "Whose Ghosts These Are" by veteran author Charles L. Grant, which captures the mood of the collection perfectly. We are led down a dark street in search of a mysterous murderer who is little more than a ghost. Who is he and what are his motives? At last we find a clue -- in a room marked by a single door in a narrow run down building, unremarkable in appearance, but oh, the dark treasures it contains.
And the ghost? Yes, he is here -- in a dusty case that fits us so well, and we feel -- well, almost as if this is where we belong.
And if you love great horror fiction, this is indeed a treasure. Edited by Dennis Etchison and with information about the history, purpose and membership qualifications of the Horror Writers Association, a national organization for professionals in the horror genre and writers aspiring to become professionals, this anthology is one of the best the HWA has published.
Highly recommended.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Schtinky VINE VOICE on April 6, 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
Straight from HWA comes such horror-writing masters as Richard Laymon, Peter Straub, Joyce Carol Oates, Tom Piccirilli, Conrad Williams, and Lisa Morton. Eighteen masterful tales of horror by the very best. Plus, there's a brief introduction and afterward by editor Dennis Etchison, and the stories are followed by the contributing author's biographies and a description of what HWA is and what they do.

Table Of Contents:

· The Museum Of Dr. Moses by Joyce Carol Oates

· Worse Than Bones by Ramsey Campbell

· King Of Outer Space by Peter Atkins

· Piano Bar Blues by Melanie Tem

· Those Vanished I Recognize by Tom Piccirilli

· Inland, Shoreline by Darren O. Godfrey

· The Window by Joel Lane

· Author, Author by Gordon Linzner

· Hammerhead by Richard Laymon

· Imbroglio by Conrad Williams

· Transorbital Love Probe by Th. Metzger

· The Impressionists In Winter by Susan Fry

· Whose Ghosts Are These by Charles L. Grant

· Perdido: A Fragment From A Work In Progress by Peter Straub

· In Real Life by William F. Nolan

· Pound Rots In Fragrant Harbour by Lisa Morton

· Apologia by Robert Devereaux

· The Bird Catcher by S.P. Somtow

My favorites would be 'The Museum Of Dr. Moses', a tale of an eccentric and gruesome elderly coroner and his vision of fame; kitty-cat tale 'Author, Author' by Gordon Linzner; the psychotic and horrific meltdown of 'Hammerhead' by Richard Laymon; Conrad Williams ethereal prose in 'Imbroglio'; and the languid, ghostly horror of 'The Impressionists In Winter' by Susan Fry.

If you're a fan of the horror anthology like I am, you won't want to miss out on this tasty treat. There's enough shivers inside 'The Museum Of Horrors' to keep you up at night, quivering in your armchair with the three-way lamp on high. Enjoy!
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