LAWRENCE, Margery. Master of Shadows. London, Robert Hale Ltd,1959.
8vo. Original maroon cloth, spine titled in gilt, with illustrated dustwrapper depicting a gothic wraith in red and purple; pp.188; a very good copy with some mild foxing mainly to fore edge, spine a little faded as usual, not price-clipped.
First edition, first issue. This quartet of horror stories tied to the psychic detective Miles Pennoyer is exceedingly uncommon in the first impression. The first print run sold out quickly, and a second (still rare) issue was released the same month. The dustwrapper, being inked in red and purple, frequently fades to an off-white, making this copy a superior survival.
Circus Child is a story in which a girl is haunted by the spectre of her performing past.
The Woman on the Stairs tells of an elderly ghost which attempts to drain the youth from its victims.
Saloozy is the tale of an ancient and evil magician spreading his dire influence into the present.
The Twisted Christ tells of a bizarre statue of the Nazarene, and how it corrupts everything around it.
Margery Lawrence was a popular author of supernatural fiction, and in later life became a confirmed spiritualist. Her most successful books were the Miles Pennoyer tales, which began with No.7 Queer Street in 1945.