THE HAUNTED HOUSE AT KEW. London: William Stevens. Ltd., n.d. [1893?]. Octavo, pp. [1-5] 6-204 [205-207: publisher ads] [note: front endpapers are printed with advertisements; last two leaves of final gathering (signature "O") used as rear free endpaper and rear paste-down], original decorated dark green cloth, front and spine panels stamped in black and gold. First edition. The British Library citation for another novel (THE HEART OF A HERO) published as by "the author of THE HAUNTED HOUSE OF KEW" gives the author's name as "Gertrude Price, afterwards Jones, afterwards Devot." Presumably Devot went the way of Jones and Price, and Gertrude moved on to Mr. Warren (sounding more and more like the black widow villain of a sensational novel of her own). This would be in keeping with the manner of novels she turned out, if the present volume is representative, spilling out, as it does, a cornucopia of shadows and rumors, old crimes, cellars full of hidden plunder, a disguised safe in an office desk, two suicides (and ghostly reenactments of them), and, enclosing all of them, the typical setting of the Gothic: a vulnerable young heroine more or less trapped in an imposing old building. The novel looks to be a very fair example of the Victorian sensation novel. Part of the publisher's Family Story-Teller series, number 86 according to a penciled note on p. [205]; 84 titles are listed in the ads on that page for the series, all unattributed. Not in the collections of Wolff or Locke or any major fantasy bibliographies. Boards slightly bowed, slight offsetting and foxing to endpapers, a nearly fine copy of this rare book. (#147892).

Price: $1,000.00

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