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Told by the Dead

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 350 pages
  • Publisher: PS Publishing; Limited edition edition (30 Jun. 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1902880706
  • ISBN-13: 978-1902880709
  • Product Dimensions: 22.4 x 15.8 x 3.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,618,565 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Hardcover
Ramsey Campbell's latest collection gives us another twenty-three horror tales. In any collection you'll always get a few duds, but the hit ratio here is high, with even the lesser pieces still well crafted enough to be interesting (the only story that does nothing for me here is 'Twice by Fire' - a fairly generic ghost story produced as spinoffery for the movie The Crow). Some of the highlights for me were 'Agatha's Ghost' (is Agatha really haunted or just insane - nicely twisty), 'Little Ones' (concerning a school mistress's bizarre family life) and Slow (a very strange sf-story where the worlds slowest ever chase gains tension due to its very strangeness). There is some repetition of ideas and moods here if read in one sitting, and it's not quite up to the level of Dark Feasts (my favourite Campbell collection) but this is still an essential collection for lovers of the macabre.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
An excellent collection here, I love horror with an urban setting and Ramsey Campbell has been a hero of mine for a long time. My favourite has to be The Retrospective, I love 'Theme Parks with a sinister edge' stories, and I had a couple of teachers at school who inspired the same fear as one of the characters mentioned. There's a similar one of the author's in print somewhere about a sinister theme park that reflects on the everyday life of a town destroyed by unemployment - can't remember the name, alas - but both stories are originals in their own way and the endings are completely different. If anybody reads this review and can give me the story's name I'd be so grateful, thanks. 'No End of Fun' is another winner, and a special mention for 'The Little Ones'.
Thank you for this, Mr Ramsey Campbell!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Ramsey Campbell's, Told by the Dead, is a wonderful collection of chilling tales. The tension and atmosphere he adds to each story makes me feel as I'm right there with the characters. Mr. Campbell is a master story-teller and (in my opinion) ranks with the greats of horror as Poe and M. R. James.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x8e3ffabc) out of 5 stars 4 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8e24803c) out of 5 stars Wonderful book 8 Mar. 2013
By Alexandria Bracanovich - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Ramsey Campbell should be knighted. It's about the only award he hasn't won yet. Usually when I read a book of shorties I've read most of them before in anthologies. I was pleasantly surprised never to have read any of these before and I'm a long time Ramsey Campbell fan. The stories are all greatly disturbing. I love how is writing moves from a fairly normal character and situation into an unreliable narrator in a thoroughly labyrinth of horror. If you haven't tried Campbell yet this is a great book to start with. If you're already a regular reader of his work you'll love this. And to top it off, it has recently been republished in paperback, though you may have to go to Amazon UK to find it. It's worth the trip. And while there you may see other books by Campbell that haven't been published in the US yet. Get them all.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8e248294) out of 5 stars Stories from a master of mood 4 May 2007
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
This stellar collection contains twenty-three stories written over thirty-five years, beginning right after Demons by Daylight and ending with the publication in 2002 of "The Retrospective" in Dark Terrors 6. In his afterward, Campbell confesses that he's losing his perspective on these stories; readers, however, will experience a writer who continues to evolve, a talented professional whose current output remains as vital and enthralling as his estimable earlier efforts.

Campbell remains a master of mood, of creating an underlying sense of menace in everyday settings. Witness this bit of stage setting from "Twice by Fire":

"A department store occupies most of the next block. Legs wearing shoes stand in a window, torsos without limbs expose their underwear beside an arrangement of half a dozen heads whose lidless eyes turn inwards, fixed on their nightmares. Light as pale as a mortuary, and rendered meaningless by the desertion of the street, freezes all these objects as though preserving evidence."

Perfect. And there's more where that came from.

Despair is a key element in these tales, on vivid display in such tales as "Agatha's Ghost" and "The Entertainment." So is disorientation, used to good effect in "Accident Zone" or "All for Sale." Campbell ranges far and wide for his effects, effortlessly shifting from the big city to rural settings to create his intimate hells. Campbell even addresses the literary milieu, capping the collection with three very effective pieces, "Worse Than Bones," a tale about readers' relationships with their books, "No Story In It," about a horror writer slowly fading into obscurity, and 'The Word," a tale of a global bestseller that conveys a personal message to each of its readers. Each has telling points to make about readers, writers, and the literary world in general.

As Poppy Z. Brite concludes in her introduction, "Because he is able to...horrify us in a way that touches not just our brains and viscera, but our souls--Ramsey Campbell truly is the best of us all, and his own best is well represented in this collection." Kudos to Ms. Brite for saying it so well.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8e2484d4) out of 5 stars Campbell is English great scary ...... 9 Dec. 2014
By Classic George - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After reading Campbell over the years I have always felt that he is the English Richard Matheson. And since i have always felt that Matheson is one of the greats in the horror field of fiction, this a very high compliment indeed, from me. I especially liked "The Retrospective".But these are all classic stories as good as you will find of this genre. Highly recommended.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8e248678) out of 5 stars Had some pretty good stories but few 24 Jan. 2016
By donna alexander - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It was ok. Didn't hold my attention. Had some pretty good stories but few.
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