Monday, March 06, 2006

Robert Bloch's The Unspeakable Betrothal


I know why Ech-Pi-El loved to browse used book stalls. I've found the most fascinating books. Recently I found copies of Karl Edward Wagner's 1977 Conan editions by Berkely Publishing.

And I obtained a copy of Such Stuff As Screams Are Made Of by Robert Bloch.

I won't go into all the gory details - and yes, very gory - of the story The Unspeakable Betrothal [1]. However, it starts, "Avis Knew she wasn't as really sick as Doctor Clegg had said. She was merely bored with living. The death impulse perhaps; then again, it might have been nothing more than her distatse for clever young men who persisted in addressing her as 'O rara Avis'."

We know immediately this is not Lovecraft. It has a female in it!

Lovecrfatian voices and shapes from other worlds eventually play into the story to a heinous end.

My favorite part, though, was a simple phrase I hadn't seen before: "... and now they would carry her ulnagr Yuggoth Farnomi ilyaa...".

Add that to your blackbook chants!

Between the covers of the original Avon Reader #9 lay these gems:

The Flower-Women - Clark Ashton Smith
The Night Wire - H. F. Arnold
Through the Vibrations - P Schuyler Miller
The Man Who Never Grew Young - Fritz Leiber Jr
The Man From the Moon - Otis Adelbert Kline
The Unspeakable Betrothal - Robert Bloch
The Stone Ship - William Hope Hodgson
Child's Play - Alice Schnirring
The Madness of Andelsprutz - Lord Dunsany
The Painted Mirror - Donald Wandrei


1 see Marc h 5 blog post for more on Bloch.

1 comment:

Michelle said...

It took me rummaging in the used bins in a bookstore in Wales half a world away (it seems) to find Bloch's American Gothic a few years ago, with its basis in the facts of one of America's earliest serial killers. I hadn't heard of it before, here in the U.S. And what a lurid read it was!

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