THE MERCY OF THE LORD. London: William Heinemann, [1914]. Octavo, pp. [1-8] [1] 2-311 [312: blank], original olive green cloth stamped in gold. First edition. Twenty-four stories. Steel, brought up in Scotland, married an official in the Indian Civil Service and spent twenty-two years in the Punjab, teaching herself the language and holding office as Inspectress of Girls' Schools. She became known as an author and translator of folk and fairy tales for children, and of novels for adults that combined an interest in Indian culture with a respect for imperial values as well. "The Birth of Fire" is a weird story about a fire worshipper. "A Maiden's Prayer" concerns Kali worship and a Tantric cult. "The supernaturalism of Hindu and Muslim customs and beliefs wafts through Steel's stories like an incense; a fantastic atmosphere clings to them, whether they are objectively supernatural or not; indeed the uncertainty itself is part of the atmosphere. The author's knowledge of religious and occult lore is put to use neither sentimentally nor sensationally but with a more genuine sense of both humor and horror. Her work deserves a closer look by genre enthusiasts than it has yet received." - Robert Eldridge. Spine panel tanned, some mild tanning and foxing to pages early and late, small worm holes to margins of last few leaves, a very good copy. (#116858).

Price: $100.00

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