May. 17, 2018

Volume three of this great series!

The Complete Tales of Jules de Grandin, Volume 3: The Dark Angel by Seabury Quinn

Jules de Grandin was an occult detective in the same vein as Carnacki the Ghost-Finder and John Silence. The stories were published in Weird Tales, a 1930’s and 1940’s pulp magazine that also featured the stories of HP Lovecraft (Cthulhu Mythos) and Robert E Howard (Conan.)

De Grandin is a Frenchman, small and blond haired with tiny feet. He is irascible and totally convinced of his own importance. He appears to be expert in any type of monster hunting, from vampires to ghosts. He knows strange lore from many lands, having actually lived for a time in such far-flung locations as Laos and Tibet.

As a detective, he is a former member of the French Sûreté. The stories in this book happen to feature a colleague of de Grandin, the diminutive Inspector Renouard.

According to an official list of Jules de Grandin stories, there is perhaps enough left for one more volume. I’m looking forward to it. I want to touch briefly on each tale. I try to give no spoilers, but a warning here soothes the folks who fear them!

•         “The Lost Lady” features a villain very much in the vein of Fu Manchu!

•         “The Ghost Helper,” asks the question of love beyond the grave…

•         “Satan’s Stepson” deals with a woman attacked by a Russian named Konstantin—who was just recently executed by firing squad!

•         “The Devil’s Bride” is a novel-length story that was published in its own paperback. A group of satanic worshipers wants to make a young woman their personal gift to the devil. I give this story the honor of being “Best in Book!”

•         “The Dark Angel” features a murderer stalking the night who appears to be an angel from hell…

•         “The Heart of Siva” deals with a play that features the Hindu god Siva. Death and horror ensue…

•         “The Bleeding Mummy” features the unwrapping of a mummy, a late 19th century-early 20th-century pastime. This one is different…

•         “The Door to Yesterday” is about a family whose death mystery might lie in their past…

•         “A Gamble in Souls” features identical twins, an inheritance, and a lady…

•         “The Thing in the Fog” features a dark shape in the mist…

•         “The Hand of Glory” features a devilish device. Made from the left hand and hair of a condemned murderer after execution, the Hand of Glory is a powerful artifact that laughs at locks and holds people captive!

I give this latest volume of chills and thrills five stars plus!

Quoth the Raven…

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