[London]: Ghost Story Press. 1993. First Edition, First Printing. Hardcover. First edition. Octavo, original red pictorial boards stamped in black and yellow, yellow titles to spine and front cover. 361 pp, Six illustrations by Andrew King. 250 numbered copies printed, this being copy No. 10. PRESENTATION COPY from the publisher, editor and author of the foreword, Richard Dalby, to Hugh Lamb, inscribed in red ink on the front free endpaper: "For Hugh Lamb. pioneer anthologist & 'discoverer' of Frederick Cowles 20 years ago - This book would have stayed buried forever without your diligence and exploration! Best wishes from Richard Dalby, Christmas, 1993". Hugh Lamb has signed and dated the book on the same leaf "Hugh Lamb, Dec 93". Laid in are four cards to Hugh Lamb from the author's widow Doris Cowles, two of which are Christmas Cards designed by her, hand-painted & signed "D.M Cowles" or just "DMC"; one is a small original watercolour painting by her of some berries on the vine, with a note affixed to the verso "Dear Mr. Lamb, you said you liked my cards, so I hope you haven't had this "Madonna". The other enclosure is a bit of my garden in September. The birds have now eaten all the berries. D.". The last card is a generic store-bought "Happy Christmas" card on which she states "To Hugh and Sue Lamb, with thanks for past Kindess, and I hear from Mary Danby that you have been looking after my interests! Many thanks, Doris Cowles". Also included is a short letter dated 1991 to Hugh from Michael W. Cowles, Frederick and Doris's son, informing him that his mother had passed away and "was buried with my Father at Wardley Cemetary on 19th August". A fine copy in a fine dust jacket. A remarkable association copy. Fine in Dust Jacket. Item #312203
¶ With a foreword by Richard Dalby, an Introduction by Cowles, and an afterword by Neil Bell, FEAR WALKS THE NIGHT collects all of Cowles' supernatural fiction, including the tales from THE HORROR OF ABBOT'S GRANGE (1936) and THE NIGHT WIND HOWLS (1938), along with the 17 tales which comprise FEAR WALKS THE NIGHT, a previously unpublished collection. An herein lies a tale: when forming the contents for his long series of supernatural anthologies which commenced in the 1970s, Hugh Lamb made contact with Frederick Cowles widow Doris (Frederick had died young in 1948) in order to secure rights to republish some of his ghostly tales. Imagine his surprise when he was informed that the typescript of an entirely unpublished collection of supernatural stories existed! Hugh used three previously unpublished tales from FEAR WALKS... in his anthology series, and all 17 tales are now here first collected in book form. At the end of Richard Dalby's introduction to this volume he writes: ''We give special thanks to Michael Cowles for allowing us to reprint all his father's memorable ghost stories; Hugh Lamb for his pioneering work in reviving Frederick Cowles (and so many unjustly neglected authors in the genre) twenty years ago: and Andrew Smith for contributing his tremendously atmospheric illustrations''. The slightly later collection issued by Ash-Tree Press, THE NIGHT WIND HOWLS: COMPLETE SUPERNATURAL STORIES (1999) has a Foreword by Michael Cowles and an Introduction by Hugh Lamb. Doris Cowles was the illustrator of many of Frederick's early books, including his travelogues 'NEATH ENGLISH SKIES (1933) and THE MAGIC OF CORNWALL (1934), as well as his children's books - THE MAGIC MAP (1934), ROMANY WONDER TALES (1935), QUEST FOR ROMANCE (1947), etc. Cowles' ghostly tales are all classic ghost stories firmly in the M.R. James tradition, and the two published collections from the 1930's are amongst the rarest books in the genre.