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David GARNETT Alyse GREGORY H. A. MANHOOD Elizabeth MYERS Phyllis PAUL
Littleton POWYS Llewelyn POWYS Philippa POWYS T.F. POWYS Forrest REID
Gamel WOOLSEY
Roger Norman David Tipping Peter Tait
Richmal CROMPTON Flora MAYOR
A. N. L. MUNBY Christopher
WOODFORDE




SUNDIAL SUPERNATURAL

THE ROOM OPPOSITE

  And Other Tales of Mystery And Imagination

by FLORA MAYOR

With an Introduction

by Richard Dalby






flora mayor, the room opposite, sundial supernatural


First published in 1935, the first and only edition of Flora Mayor’s THE ROOM OPPOSITE and Other Tales of Mystery and Imagination is impossibly scarce to find and thus commands a high price when tracked down. We're now delighted to confirm the forthcoming publication of Sundial's edition.

Excellent traditional ghost stories after the manner of M. R. James, who opined that those pieces "which introduce the supernatural commend themselves to me very strongly." James did not hand out such compliments freely.

Contains sixteen stories: 

 ‘The Room Opposite’, ‘The Kind Action of Mr. Robinson', ‘Letters From Manningfield’, ‘Tales of Widow Weeks’, ‘Fifteen Charlotte Street’, ‘The Unquiet Grave’, ‘Christmas Night at Almira’, ‘In the Bus’, ‘Mother and Daughter’, ‘Innocents’ Day’, ‘A Season at the Sceptre’, ‘The Lounge at the Royal’, ‘The Dead Lady’, ‘Miss De Mansaring of Asham’, ‘There Shall Be Lights at Thy Death', ‘Le Spectre de la Rose.’

*     *     *     *     *

Best known for her beautifully observed and otherworldly novel The Rector's Daughter, Flora MacDonald Mayor was a remarkable woman. She read history at Newnham College, Cambridge, in the early 1890s and then became an actress before turning to literature. She wrote short stories — her first book was a collection of short stories, Mrs Hammond's Children, published in 1902 under the pseudonym, Mary Strafford — and three novels; The Third Miss Symons (1913), The Rector's Daughter (1924) & The Squire's Daughter (1929).  She was also a writer of ghost stories, and published her sole collection of 'mystery tales' The Room Opposite; greatly admired by many including the supreme master of the genre M R James.


Details of the forthcoming edition

Cover Price: 30.00   Limited edition Hardback   ISBN-13: 978-1-908274-38-0

Book Dimensions: 210 148 mm   Publication date: January 2022

THE ROOM OPPOSITE will be published in a limited edition of 150 numbered copies

We are accepting advance orders, which will be individually numbered and shipped in order of chronological receipt.

All orders placed will be acknowldged by email
Should you require further information please contact us (here).


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THE ROOM OPPOSITE
by Flora Mayor






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The opening paragraphs of:


THE KIND ACTION OF MR. ROBINSON

 

WE had been telling ghost stories, not an unusual occupation in these days of superstition or of psychic activity, whichever the reader pleases. The guests of the evening had left. I was paying a visit of a few days, and I and my host, Mr. Redmayne, a man of sixty-eight, sat and smoked our last pipes by the fire.

Our talk wandered in a desultory manner over various things, and then we harked back to the ghost stories we had heard.

"It's odd to me," said Mr. Redmayne, "that you younger men should attach any value to these things. We told ghost stories to amuse ourselves, work ourselves up into a happy condition of horrible fear, but there was an end of it. You are all hoping to find clues, apparently; clues to what, I can't quite make out. Anyhow, I'll show you something, and you can tell me what clue you find there."

Mr. Redmayne went to his desk, opened it, took out a small green leather pocket-book and a bundle of papers, and handed the pocket-book to me.

"Read out what's in it," he said, "there isn't very much."

There were only six entries, written in the excellent ink possessed by our forefathers. They were these :—

Dec. 19th, 1780.  Mr. Robinson lent me 500.

Dec. 18th, 1790.  First reminder.

Dec. 18th, 1800.  Second reminder. Voice of Mr. Robinson.

Dec. 18th, 1810.  Third reminder. Appearance of Mr. Robinson in passage, his back towards me.

Dec. 18th, 1820.  Fourth reminder. Appearance of Mr. Robinson in passage, his face towards me.

Dec. 18th, 1830.  Fifth reminder. Appearance of Mr. Robinson standing by my side.

"May God Almighty help me!"

"Well, what do you say to that? "

"I don't quite know what I am expected to say. Is it automatic writing? "

"Oh no, none of that claptrap. These words were written by a Mr. Charles Marsden in his own person. I can vouch for his existence. My mother saw him once when she was a child, and his niece, Mrs. Field, was a special friend and also a cousin of my grandmother, my mother's mother. He showed that pocket-book to Mrs. Field and explained the contents, and at his death it came into her possession, and she gave it to my grandmother shortly before her death, with other personal things. She had no children, and her money was to go to a nephew in America she had never seen. As to the papers, it was only a few months ago when I was sorting out rubbish, the accumulation of more than a century, which ought to have been sorted out long before, that I came across them. I don't think my mother, or my grandmother either, knew of their existence; at any rate my mother never spoke of them. They are an explanation of the entries in the pocket-book; you shall look at them afterwards. Have you any further remarks to make about the pocket-book?"

"Only that I observe the first five entries are written in a good clear hand, and the last feebly. But, as there is an interval of fifty years between the first and last entry, this might be accounted for by old age."

"Yes, Marsden was a man of seventy-two when he wrote the last entry, and he died the next day. It's not really very late, and the story is not very long, so if you like to hear it, you shall."

I said I should like to hear it, and Mr. Redmayne proceeded:          

.....














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