Fantastic Tales: Visionary and Everyday (Modern Classics (Penguin))

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9780141190129: Fantastic Tales: Visionary and Everyday (Modern Classics (Penguin))
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From fabulous enchantments and supernatural horrors to subtler, more psychological terrors, the best of nineteenth-century fantastic literature is collected here by Italo Calvino. These mysterious and macabre tales include Hoffmann's nightmarish 'The Sandman', Poe's terrifying 'The Tell-Tale Heart' and Dickens's chilling ghost story 'The Signal-Man', and relatively unknown works from celebrated writers including Honore de Balzac, Henry James, Sir Walter Scott, Guy de Maupassant and Robert Louis Stevenson, alongside lesser-known contributors. Each story comes with a fascinating introduction by Calvino.

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The brilliant Italian writer Italo Calvino (1923-1985) compiled Fantastic Tales: Visionary and Everyday, a historical overview of great fantastic literature of the 19th century. Many of his 26 selections are from well-known authors (Sir Walter Scott, Honoré de Balzac, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Edgar Allan Poe, Charles Dickens, Ivan Turgenev, Guy de Maupassant, Robert Louis Stevenson, Henry James, Rudyard Kipling, and H.G. Wells), but Calvino largely avoided their best-known stories; the only inclusions likely to be familiar to many Americans are Hawthorne's "Young Goodman Brown," Poe's "The Tell-Tale Heart," and H.G. Wells's "The Country of the Blind." The remaining contributors range from moderately well-known to obscure. So the reader who purchases Fantastic Tales gains not only an intelligently annotated anthology of superb fiction, but, in one pleasant sense, a collection of mostly new stories.

Interestingly, some of the finest stories are by authors least known in America. Théophile Gautier's beautifully written, wrenchingly ironic "The Beautiful Vampire" establishes the traditions for romantic vampire fiction. Mérimée's "The Venus of Ille," a tale of culture clashes (Parisian and rural, ancient classical, and contemporary Christian), is sharp, well-written, and uncommonly horrific. With the gorgeous "A Lasting Love," the sole woman contributor, Vernon Lee, paints the most vivid portrait of obsessive, transcendent, destructive love.

Caveat: Calvino's introductions sometimes reveal more of the plot than readers will like. --Cynthia Ward

From the Inside Flap:

With this posthumously published anthology--a successor to his bestselling Italian Folktales--Italo Calvino, a contemporary surveyor of the otherwordly, pays homage to twenty-six of his nineteenth-century precursors. The resulting volume is both an education in the history of fantastic literature and a rollercoaster ride of wonder and terror, vampires, ghosts, and the rebellious creatures of our own psyches.

Selections include:

E.T.A. Hoffmann--"The Sandman"
Gérard de Nerval--"the Enchanted Hand"
Nikolai Gogol--"The Nose"
Edgar Allan Poe--"The Tell-Tale Heart"
Hans Christian Andersen--"The Shadow"
Ambrose Bierce--"Chickamauga"
Robert Louis Stevenson--"The Bottle Imp"
Henry James--"The Friends of the Friends"
H.G. Wells--"The Country of the Blind"

Comprising stories of the supernatural and narratives of the everyday uncanny, Fantastic Tales is a gallery of enchantments, deliciously entertaining yet more disturbing than our most persistent nightmares.

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780679755449: Fantastic Tales: Visionary and Everyday

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ISBN 10:  0679755446 ISBN 13:  9780679755449
Publisher: Vintage, 1998
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9780679415268: Fantastic Tales: Visionary and Everyday

Pantheon, 1997
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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2009. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. From fabulous enchantments and supernatural horrors to subtler, more psychological terrors, the best of nineteenth-century fantastic literature is collected here by Italo Calvino. These mysterious and macabre tales include Hoffmann s nightmarish The Sandman , Poe s terrifying The Tell-Tale Heart and Dickens s chilling ghost story The Signal-Man , and relatively unknown works from celebrated writers including Honore de Balzac, Henry James, Sir Walter Scott, Guy de Maupassant and Robert Louis Stevenson, alongside lesser-known contributors. Each story comes with a fascinating introduction by Calvino. Seller Inventory # APG9780141190129

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2009. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. From fabulous enchantments and supernatural horrors to subtler, more psychological terrors, the best of nineteenth-century fantastic literature is collected here by Italo Calvino. These mysterious and macabre tales include Hoffmann's nightmarish 'The Sandman', Poe's terrifying 'The Tell-Tale Heart' and Dickens's chilling ghost story 'The Signal-Man', and relatively unknown works from celebrated writers including Honore de Balzac, Henry James, Sir Walter Scott, Guy de Maupassant and Robert Louis Stevenson, alongside lesser-known contributors. Each story comes with a fascinating introduction by Calvino. Seller Inventory # APG9780141190129

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, 2009. Condition: New. 2009. Paperback. A collection of nineteenth-century fantastic literature - from enchantments and horrors to subtler, psychological terrors. It includes Hoffmann's "The Sandman", Poe's "The Tell-Tale Heart" and Dickens' "The Signal-Man", and works from celebrated writers including Honore de Balzac, Henry James, Sir Walter Scott and Guy de Maupassant. Editor(s): Calvino, Italo. Series: Penguin Modern Classics. Num Pages: 608 pages. BIC Classification: FC; FYB. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 196 x 129 x 36. Weight in Grams: 448. . . . . . . Seller Inventory # V9780141190129

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd. Condition: New. 2009. Paperback. A collection of nineteenth-century fantastic literature - from enchantments and horrors to subtler, psychological terrors. It includes Hoffmann's "The Sandman", Poe's "The Tell-Tale Heart" and Dickens' "The Signal-Man", and works from celebrated writers including Honore de Balzac, Henry James, Sir Walter Scott and Guy de Maupassant. Editor(s): Calvino, Italo. Series: Penguin Modern Classics. Num Pages: 608 pages. BIC Classification: FC; FYB. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 196 x 129 x 36. Weight in Grams: 448. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Seller Inventory # V9780141190129

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