THE FEARSOME ISLAND, BEING A MODERN RENDERING OF THE NARRATIVE OF ONE SILAS FORDRED, MASTER MARINER OF HYTHE, WHOSE SHIPWRECK AND SUBSEQUENT ADVENTURES ARE HEREIN SET FORTH. ALSO AN APPENDIX ACCOUNTING IN A RATIONAL MANNER FOR THE SEEMING MARVELS THAT SILAS FORDRED ENCOUNTERED DURING HIS SOJOURN ON THE FEARSOME ISLAND OF DON DIEGO RODRIGUEZ. Chicago: Printed for Herbert S. Stone & Company, 1896. Small octavo, pp. [1-12] 1-142  [144: blank] [145-148: ads] [149-150: blank] [note: first two leaves (a conjugate pair) and last leaf are blanks], original pictorial green cloth, all panels stamped in black, t.e.g., other edges untrimmed. First U.S. edition. A shipwrecked sailor in the Atlantic in 1560 discovers an island that is apparently enchanted but actually the result of an extended (and malevolent) experiment carried out by a mad scientist. Don Diego Rodriguez is an evil scientific genius with technology far in advance of his era. Banished during the Inquisition as a menace to the State, he moves to the New World -- before its discovery by Columbus -- and sets up a massively booby-trapped island. An intriguing work generically: a miniature Gothic with elements of scientific romance and thriller. Of the many late nineteenth and early twentieth century novels utilizing Gothic techniques and interests, "one of the best examples was Albert Kinross' THE FEARSOME ISLAND (1896), which contained incarnate demons, haunted castles, and other Gothic niceties." - Clareson, The Emergence of American Science Fiction: 1880-1915, p. 85n. These manifestations are rationalized in the light of nineteenth century technology, thus qualifying the book as science fiction. "An interesting account ..." - Bleiler, The Guide to Supernatural Fiction 951. Bleiler, Science-Fiction: The Early Years 1230. Clareson, Science Fiction in America, 1870s-1930s 463. Suvin, Victorian Science Fiction in the UK, p. 65. Bleiler (1978), p. 114. Reginald 08267. Spine panel just a bit sunned, a fine copy. (#130738).
No statement of printing.