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We Have Always Lived in the Castle

Shirley Jackson

Taking readers deep into a labyrinth of dark neurosis, We Have Always Lived in the Castle is a deliciously unsettling novel about a perverse, isolated, and possibly murderous family and the struggle that ensues when a cousin arrives at their estate.

Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

Patrick Suskind

The year is 1738; the place, Paris. A baby is born under a fish-monger's bloody table in a marketplace, and abandoned. Orphaned, passed over to the monks as a charity case, already there is something in the aura of the tiny infant that is unsettling. No one will look after him; he is somehow too demanding, and, even more disturbing, something is missing: as his wet nurse tries to explain, he doesn't smell the way a baby should smell; indeed, he has no scent at all.

Slowly, as we watch Jean-Baptiste Grenouille cling stubbornly to life, we begin to realize that a monster is growing before our eyes. With mounting unease, yet hypnotized, we see him explore his powers and their effect on the world around him. For this dark and sinister boy who has no smell himself possesses an absolute sense of smell, and with it he can read the world to discover the hidden truths that elude ordinary men. He can smell the very composition of objects, and their history, and where they have been, he has no need of the light, and darkness is not dark to him, because nothing can mask the odors of the universe.

As he leaves childhood behind and comes to understand his terrible uniqueness, his obsession becomes the quest to identify, and then to isolate, the most perfect scent of all, the scent of life itself.

At first, he hones his powers, learning the ancient arts of perfume-making until the exquisite fragrances he creates are the rage of Paris, and indeed Europe. Then, secure in his mastery of these means to an end, he withdraws into a strange and agonized solitude, waiting, dreaming, until the morning when he wakes, ready to embark on his monstrous quest: to find and extract from the most perfect living creatures-the most beautiful young virgins in the land- that ultimate perfume which alone can make him, too, fully human. As his trail leads him, at an ever-quickening pace, from his savage exile to the heart of the country and then back to Paris, we are caught up in a rising storm of terror and mortal sensual conquest until the frenzy of his final triumph explodes in all its horrifying consequences.

Told with dazzling narrative brilliance and the haunting power of a grown-up fairy tale, Perfume is one of the most remarkable novels of the last fifty years.

Complete Stories and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe

This single volume brings together all of Poe's stories and poems, and illuminates the diverse and multifaceted genius of one of the greatest and most influential figures in American literary history.

Table of Contents

  • "The Murders in the Rue Morgue" [Chevalier Dupin] (1841) novelette
  • The Mystery of Marie Rogêt (non-genre) [Chevalier Dupin] (1842) novella
  • "The Black Cat" (1843) short story
  • The Gold-Bug (non-genre) (1843) novella
  • "Ligeia" (1838) short story
  • "A Descent Into the Maelström" (1841) short story
  • "The Tell-Tale Heart" (1843) short story
  • "The Purloined Letter" (non-genre) [Chevalier Dupin] (1844) novelette
  • "The Assignation" (The Visionary) [Tales of the Folio Club] (1834) short story
  • "MS. Found in a Bottle [Tales of the Folio Club] (1833) short story
  • "William Wilson" (1839) short story
  • "Berenice" (1835) short story
  • "The Fall of the House of Usher" (1839) novelette
  • "The Cask of Amontillado [Fortunato] (1846) short story
  • "The Pit and the Pendulum" (1842) short story
  • "A Tale of the Ragged Mountains" (1844) short story
  • "The Man of the Crowd" (1840) short story
  • "Morella" (1835) short story
  • "Thou Art the Man" (1844) short story
  • "The Oblong Box" (1844) short story
  • "The Conversation of Eiros and Charmion" (1839) short story
  • "Metzengerstein [Tales of the Folio Club] (1832) short story
  • "The Masque of the Red Death" (1845) short story
  • "The Premature Burial" (1844) short story
  • "The Imp of the Perverse" (1845) short story
  • "The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar" (1845) short story
  • "Hop-Frog" (1850) short story
  • "The System of Doctor Tarr and Professor Fether" (1845) novelette
  • "The Literary Life of Thingum Bob, Esq." (1844) short story
  • "How to Write a Blackwood Article" (1838) short story
  • "A Predicament" (1838) short story
  • "Mystification" (1837) short story
  • "Loss of Breath [Tales of the Folio Club] (1832) short story
  • "The Man That Was Used Up: A Tale of the Late Bugaboo and Kickapoo Campaign" (1839) short story
  • "Diddling: Considered as One of the Exact Sciences" (1843) essay
  • "The Angel of the Odd: An Extravaganza" (1844) short story
  • "Mellonta Tauta" (1849) short story
  • "The Thousand-and-Second Tale of Scheherazade" (1845) short story
  • "X-ing a Paragrab" (1849) short story
  • "The Business Man" (1840) short story
  • "A Tale of Jerusalem [Tales of the Folio Club] (1832) short story
  • "The Sphinx" (1846) short story
  • "Why the Little Frenchman Wears His Hand in a Sling" (1840) short story
  • "Bon-Bon [Tales of the Folio Club] (1832) short story
  • "The Duc de L'Omelette [Tales of the Folio Club] (1832) short story
  • "Three Sundays in a Week" (1841) short story
  • "The Devil in the Belfry" (1839) short story
  • "Lionizing [Tales of the Folio Club] (1835) short story
  • "Some Words with a Mummy" (1845) short story
  • "The Spectacles" (1844) novelette
  • "Four Beasts in One: The Homo-Camelopard [Tales of the Folio Club] (1836) short story
  • "Never Bet the Devil Your Head: A Tale with a Moral" (1841) short story
  • "The Balloon-Hoax" (1844) short story
  • "Mesmeric Revelation" (1844) short story
  • "Eleonora" (1841) short story
  • The Unparalleled Adventure of One Hans Pfaall (1850) novella
  • "King Pest: A Tale Containing an Allegory" (1835) short story
  • "The Island of the Fay" (1841) short story
  • "The Oval Portrait" (1845) short story
  • "The Domain of Arnheim" (non-genre) (1842) short story
  • "Landor's Cottage" (non-genre) (1849) short story
  • "The Power of Words" (1845) short story
  • "The Colloquy of Monos and Una" (1841) short story
  • "Shadow—A Parable [Tales of the Folio Club] (1835) short story
  • "Silence—a Fable [Tales of the Folio Club] (1838) short story
  • "Von Kempelen and His Discovery" (1849) short story
  • "Narrative of A. Gordon Pym of Nantucket [Pym 1] (1966) novel
  • "Annabel Lee" (1849) poem
  • "Hymn" (1835) poem
  • "To My Mother" (1849) poem
  • "Fairy-Land" (1845) poem
  • "A Valentine" (1846) poem
  • "To Helen" (non-genre) (1831) poem
  • "Israfel" (1831) poem
  • "The City in the Sea" (1850) poem
  • "The Sleeper" (1841) poem
  • "Lenore" (1843) poem
  • "The Valley of Unrest" (1850) poem
  • "The Coliseum" (1833) poem
  • "Bridal Ballad: To —— ——" (1837) poem
  • "Sonnet to Zante" (1837) poem
  • "Sonnet — Silence" (1840) poem
  • "Dream-Land" (1844) poem
  • "Eulalie—A Song" (1845) poem
  • "To F——s S. O——d" (1850) poem
  • "To F——" (1835) poem
  • "The Raven" (1845) poem
  • "To M. L. S—" (1847) poem
  • "Ulalume" (1847) poem
  • "To —— ——" (Not long ago,...) (1848) poem
  • "To Helen" (1852) poem
  • "An Enigma" (1848) poem
  • "For Annie" (non-genre) (1849) poem
  • "The Bells" (1849) poem
  • "Eldorado" (1849) poem
  • "Stanzas" (1827) poem
  • "A Dream Within a Dream" (1849) poem
  • "A Dream" (1827) poem
  • "The Happiest Day, the Happiest Hour" (1827) poem
  • "Sonnet—To Science" (1829) poem
  • "The Lake: To —" (unknown)) poem
  • "Al Aaraaf" (1829) poem
  • "Romance" (1845) poem
  • "To the River ——" (1829) poem
  • "To ——" (The bowers whereat...) (1829) poem
  • "Tamerlane" (1827) poem
  • "To ——" (I heed not...) (1829) poem
  • "Dreams" (1827) poem
  • "To __ __" (I saw thee on the bridal day...) (1827) poem
  • "Spirits of the Dead" (1827) poem
  • "Evening Star" (1827) poem
  • "Serenade" (1833) poem
  • "Elizabeth" (1911) poem
  • "Imitation" (1827) poem
  • "Hymn to Aristogeiton and Harmodius" (1938) poem
  • "Scenes from "Politian": An Unpublished Drama" (1835) poem
  • "A Paean" (1831) poem
  • "To Isadore" (1845) poem
  • "Alone" (1875) poem
  • "To One in Paradise" (1834) poem
  • "Edgar Allan Poe—A Biographical Note" (1966) essay

Tales of Mystery and Imagination

Edgar Allan Poe

This collection of Poe's best stories contains all the terrifying and bewildering tales that characterise his work. As well as the Gothic horror of such famous stories as 'The Pit and the Pendulum', 'The Fall of the House of Usher', 'The Premature Burial' and 'The Tell-Tale Heart', all of Poe's Auguste Dupin stories are included. These are the first modern detective stories and include 'The Murders in the Rue Morgue', 'The Mystery of Marie Roget' and 'The Purloined Letter'.

Table of Contents:

  • Ms. Found in a Bottle
  • Berenice
  • Morella
  • Some Passages in the Life of a Lion (Lionizing)
  • The Assignation
  • Bon-Bon
  • King Pest
  • Metzengerstein
  • Silence
  • A Descent into the Maelstrom
  • Ligeia
  • The Fall of the House of Usher
  • William Wilson
  • The Conversation of Eiros and Charmion
  • The Man of the Crowd
  • The Murders in the Rue Morgue
  • The Mystery of Marie Rogèt
  • The Colloquy of Monos and Una
  • The Masque of the Red Death
  • The Pit and the Pendulum
  • The Tell-Tale Heart
  • The Gold Bug
  • The Black Cat
  • The Spectacles
  • The Premature Burial
  • The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar
  • The Oblong Box
  • The Cask of Amontillado
  • Landor's Cottage

The Haunting of Hill House

Shirley Jackson

First published in 1959, Shirley Jackson's The Haunting of Hill House has been hailed as a perfect work of unnerving terror. It is the story of four seekers who arrive at a notoriously unfriendly pile called Hill House: Dr. Montague, an occult scholar looking for solid evidence of a "haunting"; Theodora, his lighthearted assistant; Eleanor, a friendless, fragile young woman well acquainted with poltergeists; and Luke, the future heir of Hill House. At first, their stay seems destined to be merely a spooky encounter with inexplicable phenomena. But Hill House is gathering its powers-and soon it will choose one of them to make its own.

The Wasp Factory

Iain M. Banks

"Two years after I killed Blyth, I murdered my young brother Paul, for quite different reasons and more fundamental reasons than I'd disposed of Blyth, and then a year after that I did my young cousin Esmeralda, more or less on a whim. That's my score to date. Three. I haven't killed anybody for years, and don't intend to ever again. It was just a stage I was going through."

Exquisite Corpse

Poppy Z. Brite

To serial slayer Andrew Compton, murder is an art, the most intimate art. After feigning his own death to escape from prison, Compton makes his way to the United States with the sole ambition of bringing his "art" to new heights. Tortured by his own perverse desires, and drawn to possess and destroy young boys, Compton inadvertently joins forces with Jay Byrne, a dissolute playboy who has pushed his "art" to limits even Compton hadn't previously imagined. Together, Compton and Byrne set their sights on an exquisite young Vietnamese-American runaway, Tran, whom they deem to be the perfect victim.

Swiftly moving from the grimy streets of London's Piccadilly Circus to the decadence of the New Orleans French Quarter, and punctuated by rants from radio talk show host Lush Rimbaud, a.k.a. Luke Ransom, Tran's ex-lover, who is dying of AIDS and who intends to wreak ultimate havoc before leaving this world, Exquisite Corpse unfolds into a labyrinth of murder and love. Ultimately all four characters converge on a singular bloody night after which their lives will be irrevocably changed -- or terminated.

Poppy Z. Brite dissects the landscape of torture and invites us into the mind of a killer. Exquisite Corpse confirms Brite as a writer who defies categorization. It is a novel for those who dare trespass where the sacred and profane become one.

The Turn of the Screw

Henry James

A very young woman's first job: governess for two weirdly beautiful, strangely distant, oddly silent children, Miles and Flora, at a forlorn estate haunted by a beckoning evil.

Half-seen figures who glare from dark towers and dusty windows- silent, foul phantoms who, day by day, night by night, come closer, ever closer. With growing horror, the helpless governess realizes the fiendish creatures want the children, seeking to corrupt their bodies, possess their minds, own their souls.

But worse - much worse - the governess discovers that Miles and Flora have no terror of the lurking evil. For they want the walking dead as badly as the dead want them.

The King in Yellow

Robert W. Chambers

With its strange, imaginative blend of horror, science fiction, romance and lyrical prose, Robert W. Chambers' The King in Yellow is a classic masterpiece of weird fiction. This series of vaguely connected stories is linked by the presence of a monstrous and suppressed book which brings fright, madness and spectral tragedy to all those who read it. An air of futility and doom pervade these pages like a sweet insidious poison. Dare you read it?

This collection has been called the most important book in American supernatural fiction between Poe and the moderns. H. P. Lovecraft, creator of the famed Cthulu mythos, whose own fiction was greatly influenced by this book stated that The King in Yellow 'achieves notable heights of cosmic fear'.

Table of Contents:

  • The Repairer of Reputations
  • The Mask
  • In the Court of the Dragon
  • The Yellow Sign
  • The Demoiselle d'Ys
  • The Prophets' Paradise
  • The Street Of The Four Winds
  • The Street of the First Shell
  • The Street of Our Lady of the Fields
  • Rue Barrée