The Three Impostors and Other Stories by Arthur Machen
Trade paperback. Volume #1 of the Best Weird Tales of Arthur Machen. Recommended!! Introduction by S.T. Joshi (editor).
Includes: "The Great God Pan," "The Inmost Light," "The Shining Pyramid," "The Three Impostors" (complete).
He was hot on his trail, growing lean with eagerness; and in the evenings, when the sun was swimming on the verge of the mountain, he would pace the terrace to and fro with his eyes on the ground, while the mist grew white in the valley, and the stillness of the evening brought far voices near, and the blue smoke rose a straight column from the diamond-shaped chimney of the grey farm-house, just as I had seen it on the first morning. -- from "The Three Impostors"
In these eerie and once-shocking stories, supernatural horror is a transmuting force powered by the core of life. To resist it requires great will from the living, for civilization is only a new way to behave, and not one instinctive to life. Decency prevents discussion about such pressures, so each person must face such things alone. The comforts and hopes of civilization are threatened and undermined by these ecstatic nightmares that haunt the living. This is nowhere more deftly suggested than through Machen's extraordinary prose, where the textures and dreams of the Old Ways are never far removed.
H. P. Lovecraft declared Arthur Machen (1863–1947) to be a modern master who could create "cosmic fear raised to its most artistic pitch." In form something like a puzzle box, "The Three Impostors" cryptic connections and revelations were sometimes abridged. Its text here is complete.