The Weird Tales Story Paperback – 1 Dec 1999
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The first two chapters give the magazine's history and a biography of WT's most famous editor, Farnsworth Wright.
The magazine was launched by J.C. Henneberger, a publisher of humour magazines and a Poe devotee. After a weak start, Wright took over in 1924.
Although never commerically successful, Wright managed to keep the magazine afloat and gave an outlet to many excellent writers and artists.
Wright's interesting personality-wit, music critic and admirer of French culture-is vividly brought to life by his friend, E. Hoffmann Price, who wrote the bio.
Chapter 3 is a reprinted editorial from 1924 describing the "highly imaginative" stories the magazine would publish. The editorial is largely uninteresting, but does prophetically state that the magazine hopes to discover a weird writer equal to Poe or Hawthorne.
The fourth chapter is the longest, describing Weinberg's choice of the most notable stories published during WT's duration. Regular genres included supernatural horror, science fiction (usually about mad scientists or space exploration), "conte cruels" involving torture and/or madness, and fantasy (of the "lost civilization" or "sword & sorcery" types).
Noted contributors included H.P. Lovecraft, Robert E. Howard, Clark Ashton Smith, Henry S. Whitehead, C.L. Moore and Manly Wade Wellman.
In the 1940s, the magazine gained a new editor, Dorothy McIlWraith, who brought in Ray Bradbury, Fritz Leiber,Ted Sturgeon, Fredric Brown and C. Hall Thompson.Read more ›
Nevertheless, I was looking for an interesting introduction to Weird Tales and this fit the bill.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
An updated and improved edition would be very much appreciated. If it's still possible, I'd like to see every cover of every issue, small but in colour. The reputation of some of the writers, especially H P Lovecraft, has grown even further since 1977 and there is no doubt more that can be said. but in the meantime, this is all there is, and worth buying.