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The King In Yellow

The King In Yellow by Robert W. Chambers
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Here is how Lovecraft described this masterpiece of supernatural horror: "The King in Yellow, achieves notable heights of cosmic fear…

It is a series of connected short stories having as a background a monstrous and suppressed book whose perusal brings fright, madness, and spectral tragedy. The most powerful of its tales, perhaps, is The Yellow Sign, in which is introduced a silent and terrible churchyard watchman with a face like a puffy grave-worm's. A boy, describing a tussle he has had with this creature, shivers and sickens as he relates a certain detail. 'Well, it's Gawd's truth that when I 'it 'im 'e grabbed me wrists, Sir, and when I twisted 'is soft, mushy fist one of 'is fingers come off in me 'and.' An artist, who after seeing him has shared with another a strange dream of a nocturnal hearse, is shocked by the voice with which the watchman accosts him. The fellow emits a muttering sound that fills the head "like thick oily smoke from a fat-rendering vat or an odour of noisome decay." What he mumbles is merely this: 'Have you found the Yellow Sign?'

A weirdly hieroglyphed onyx talisman, picked up on the street by the sharer of his dream, is shortly given the artist; and after stumbling queerly upon the hellish and forbidden book of horrors the two learn, among other hideous things which no sane mortal should know, that this talisman is indeed the nameless Yellow Sign handed down from the accursed cult of Hastur -- from primordial Carcosa, whereof the volume treats, and some nightmare memory of which seeks to lurk latent and ominous at the back of all men's minds. Soon they hear the rumbling of the black-plumed hearse driven by the flabby and corpse-faced watchman. He enters the night-shrouded house in quest of the Yellow Sign, all bolts and bars rotting at his touch." Discover for yourself why Lovecraft, Bloch, Leiber, King and other horror masters were influenced by and rave over, The King in Yellow. But don’t turn down the lights!

Renaissance E Books; January 2004
220 pages; ISBN 9781588733115
Read online, or download in secure PDF format
Title: The King In Yellow
Author: Robert W. Chambers
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