Do you enjoy the old myths and legends ? Do you appreciate good fantasy (and not the mass-produced commercial stuff or the bad Tolkien-wannabes) ? Do real writing style, imagination, atmosphere, originality, sheer skill in short fiction work for you ? If so, try this book.
Here are six full volumes of Dunsany's much-admired short stories of wonder. From one of the few successful artificial mythological cycles ever composed to many later pieces blending our world with elsewhere, most are outstanding. Lord Dunsany was a great author of stories, novels, plays (with six on Broadway at the same time once), essays and poems, a supporter of the arts (he knew W.B. Yeats, who produced a Selected Dunsany at his own publishing house and helped the poet Francis Ledwidge) and the 18th in a line of Anglo-Irish noblemen, with a 12th Century castle in Meath, Ireland.
The book is not perfect - there is no proper biography, the list of works is incomplete, only a small selection of the many writer comments available are present and, sadly, it is only available in paperback (though a hardback was announced last year) but these do not affect the meat - this is still one to keep. Oh, one other thing to watch - the volumes are out of order (The Gods of Pegana, which should come first, is left til last). Buy one for yourself and consider friends, libraries etc. Then look around for more, starting with the reprinted novels "The King of Elfland's Daughter" and "The Charwoman's Shadow"... And watch out for the pale imitators !