All Souls Night

WALPOLE, Hugh. All Souls Night.

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WALPOLE, Hugh All Souls Night London: Macmillan, 1933.

8vo. Original green cloth patterned in blind to upper cover, gilt title to spine, with printed grey dust wrapper; pp. [x], 369, [1], [2, ads]; sunning to spine of wrapper; a few chips to head and tail of spine of wrapper; light foxing to edges, a very good copy of a scarce book, rare in the wrapper.
First edition. A collection of ghost stories, one of 36 novels Walpole wrote in his lifetime. A bestseller in the early 20th century, Walpole has been largely forgotten since his death despite his temporal success. As a result, many of his books have become scarce, particularly in a collectible condition. All Souls' Night is a group of sinister stories, focusing on the nature of the how the mind responds to stress and mystery.
Biographies published since his death have revealed that Horace pursued a series of gay relationships throughout his life - this was an open secret in his lifetime but not something anyone could speak of publicly, as homosexual practices were illegal for men in Britain at the time. Letters from many different sources reflect (usually in bemused good humour) on his turning up to an event late, having dallied with one writer, attendant or another. Good for him.