The King In Yellow by Robert W Chambers

This book is easily split into two parts, perhaps three. The first four stories are overtly supernatural and horrific, having to do with a fabled play, The King In Yellow, and its unhappy effects on its readers. The second bit transitions away from TKIY, seguing from horror and romance to horrors of a different sort and finally, in what you might call the third section, just romance (tho I suppose there’s a sort of existential horror to be found in the final story of the collection, Rue Barree, which I personally thought the weakest of the bunch.) My favorite stories were actually The Yellow Sign and The Street Of Our Lady Of The Fields, two rather diametrically opposite tales: the first being creepy and tragic, and the other luminous and romantic. It’s easy to see why this book has had a lasting impression on readers, even if it isn’t the tightest collection, thematically.

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