"The most effective shocker yet invented by the author of The Beetle. Grim, fantastic and humorous in an original fashion." - "The World"
"Weird, grotesque and comical. Told with the spirit and vigour that we have learnt to expect in the work of Mr. Marsh." - "The Speaker"
"Curios" is a series of seven short stories narrated alternately by Mr. Pugh and Mr. Tress, rival collectors of "curios," who are sometimes best of friends and often worst of enemies. Pugh is superstitious, tending to believe every antique he comes across is haunted. Tress is cold and cynical and will stop at nothing - even theft or murder - to add to his collection.
Ranging in tone from horrifying to mysterious to darkly comical, these stories follow Tress and Pugh as they come in contact with an array of strange objects, including a poisoned pipe that seems to come to life when smoked, a 13th century severed hand bent on murder, and a phonograph record on which a murdered woman speaks from beyond the grave.
"Curios" was first published in 1898, the year following Marsh's greatest success, "The Beetle." Owing to the poor quality materials of which it was made, only a handful of copies of the first edition of "Curios" have survived. This edition reprints the unabridged text of the first edition, restoring this delectably gruesome and hilarious book to modern audiences.