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A tale of horror in which a pleasant sojourn down the Danube tumbles terrifyingly awry as the veil between this world and an unfathomably weird dimension is inadvertently pierced by an innocent pair of vacationers, “The Willows”, arguably Algernon Blackwood’s seminal contribution to supernatural literature, has had a lasting influence on the field. No less a personage than H. P. Lovecraft describing it as “…the greatest weird tale ever written.” A reading will reveal a clear influence to one familiar with Lovecraft’s work. The masterful handling of mystery and suspense that build to a quite satisfyingly unnerving crescendo may be particularly noted by the discerning aficionado of the genre.
A classic. And like a number of other great tales by Blackwood-- "The Wendigo", "The Man Whom the Trees Loved"-- difficult to categorize neatly... this must be read all at one sitting for maximum effect, as the tension and weirdness build cumulatively. An indispensable element in any serious collection of weird literature.
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