Carnacki, The Ghost Finder

Carnacki, The Ghost Finder


(6 Reviews)
Carnacki, The Ghost Finder by William Hope Hodgson







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Carnacki, The Ghost Finder


(6 Reviews)
Detective stories in which the great Thomas Carnacki investigates the supernatural using scientific tools, such as photography, and tools that are augmented by theories of the supernatural, such as the electric pentacle, which uses vacuum tubes to repel supernatural forces.

Book Excerpt

w seemed ridiculously dim by contrast with the tremendous blaze of the flash-power.... And then, as I stooped forward, staring and listening, there came the crashing thud of the door of the Grey Room. The sound seemed to fill the whole of the large corridor, and go echoing hollowly through the house. I tell you, I felt horrible--as if my bones were water. Simply beastly. Jove! how I did stare, and how I listened. And then it came again--thud, thud, thud, and then a silence that was almost worse than the noise of the door; for I kept fancying that some awful thing was stealing upon me along the corridor. And then, suddenly, my lamp was put out, and I could not see a yard before me. I realized all at once that I was doing a very silly thing, sitting there, and I jumped up. Even as I did so, I thought I heard a sound in the passage, and quite near me. I made one backward spring into my room, and slammed and locked the door. I sat on my bed, and stared at the door. I had my revolver in my hand;

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William Hope Hodgson (1877-1918) is better known for his truly terrifying horror/romance House on the Borderland. In Carnacki, The Ghost Finder he takes on a slightly lighter tone.

These six short stories were first published between 1910 and 1912 in two magazines and then printed together as an anthology in 1913.

The stories all share a similar thread: Thomas Carnacki occasionally invites four of his friends over for dinner and over after-dinner cigars regales them with tales of his latest adventures as a sort of paranormal detective. The stories are quite original, but the solutions are not always supernatural.

Nonetheless, they are well worth the investment of time to read and for this collection I give a rare 5-star approval.

C. Alan Loewen
I'll echo the other rave reviews for this one, a lovely collection of chilling ghost/haunting stories, where Carnathi is an informed sceptic, willing to believe in the supernatural and protect himself from same with various rituals, yet also on the look-out for hoaxes (some of which are inspired, as you will see). The "stories after dinner" approach of each chapter works well and the haunted bits are pretty scary, much detail and not one to read too late at night!
A delightful book as told by the original Ghost Hunter - Carnacki. Each chapter is a different tale told by Carnacki to his dinner guests, and some are real ghost stories, while others are shown to be hoaxes perpetrated by various undesirables. All of the tales are scary, witty, and enjoyable.
This is Hodgson's best work, or so critics generally agree. His creation, Carnacki, arrogant, cynical, rude and opinionated, is the most memorable character in his books.

The stories themselves are a mix of detective stories, where fake ghosts and hauntings are uncovered, and some truly horrifying stories of real ghosts. Hodgson is not a major literary figure, but these stories will live on for the sheer force of his imagination.