Edith Nesbit was an English novelist born in 1858 in Kennington, which was then Surrey and is now part of London. She died in 1924 in the next county from where she was born.
Nesbit is most famous for her children’s books and her most famous work The Railway Children is well beloved. I loved her Five Children and It stories which I read in a Victorian house all decked out for Christmas one year. That was splendid as the owner of the house had a great sense of interior decoration (though she was also rather too fond of a drink as I found out when I grew up)
Like most Victorian novelists she had a dabble in ghost stories. They sold well at the time. This one, Man Sized in Marble appears in a lot of anthologies.
It’s a story that is more impressive on the second reading (or hearing). The first time through you don’t pick up on all the little hints and foreshadowings that something dreadful is going to happen. In fact, Laura’s death wasn’t foreseen by me, which is the sign of a good story.
There is a lot of nice Gothic description of the woods and the moon and the church as well as the house lit by candles and tallow tapers.
I was going to do The Nurse’s Tale this week, but this took precedence. I am going to do The Phantom Coach next week, but I’m itching to do something American again to perfect my accent. I appreciate it may take more than one story to do that.
So, I’m thinking Ambrose Bierce. Any suggestions welcome.
My new book is out. Hard copies arrived today. Very exciting. I’m still doing voiceover and narration work if you need any of that done. I find most people don’t.
As ever, still spending more on the podcast than I earn, so if you fancy helping me out, check out
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