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About this Item
Title: Satan's Circus
Publisher: Ash-Tree, Ashcroft
Publication Date: 2004
Dust Jacket Condition: Fine
Edition: First Expanded Edition.
About this title
Limited to 500 copies Eleanor Smith (1902-45) led a life which reads as if it might have come from one of her own novels. Daughter of the First Earl of Birkenhead, she was a reluctant aristocrat who enthusiastically embraced the idea that gipsy blood ran in her veins; and she spent much of her adult life travelling Europe, drinking in gipsy lore, and learning the Romani language and customs. Eleanor was also a great admirer of the circus-its traditions and its characters-absorbing the drama that went on behind the colourful fašade. The short fiction collection, Satan's Circus, reflects Eleanor's love for gipsies, the circus, and the theatre, the title story being based on a story she had been told while working with a circus. Reflecting her eventful life, another of the stories, 'Mrs Raeburn's Waxwork', draws on the experience Eleanor gained when, on a bet, she and friend hid for part of a night in the Chamber of Horrors at Madame Tussaud's. 'Candlelight' features a fortune-telling gipsy girl, who changes the lives of a group of friends in quite devastating fashion; while 'Tamar' is a further story of gipsies, in which a wild gipsy girl tries to outsmart the devil. This new Ash-Tree Press edition of Satan's Circus includes all of the stories from the first American edition, which added one story to the original British publication ('Whittington's Cat'). Two further, uncollected stories-'The Little Mermaid', a re-telling of Andersen's fairy tale, and the haunting 'No Ships Pass'-make this the first time that all of Eleanor Smith's supernatural fiction has been gathered in a single volume. Christopher Roden's introduction provides a detailed look at the life and works of CONTENTS: Introduction by Christopher Roden; Satan's Circus; Mrs Raeburn's Waxwork; Candlelight; Portrait of a Strong Man; The Brothers; The Hurdy-Gurdy; Sweet Spanish Ladies; One o'clock; Lyceum; Whittington's Cat; Tamar; The Little Mermaid; No Ships Pass.
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