More modern horror mayhem in the form of short stories by all our favorites! Bookstore racks in the '80s were crammed full of anthologies published by Tor, Pocket, Berkley, and Avon Books; more, too, as everyone wanted in on the horror craze. Short fiction in particular highlights the genre, of course, and rather than simply anthologizing old classics by Lovecraft and the like, which seemed to be the standard for books in previous decades, all the newest - and biggest - names were featured. Some names have lasted while others, alas, have not. You'll see that the covers vary widely in quality and "quality."
Editor extraordinaire Etchison went far and wide for his three-volume Masters of Darkness (Tor 1986 - 91), culling good old stories from Nigel Kneale, Ray Bradbury, and Richard Matheson, as well as newer works from Clive Barker, Lisa Tuttle, and Joyce Carol Oates. The covers aren't exactly eye-catchers, and I haven't included Volume II because frankly that cover sucks.
Now these New Terrors (Pocket 1982 - 84) from Ramsey Campbell, that's more like it! I particularly like the woman's blonde hair fanned out on the pillow as her bed comes alive... As for that poor guy who's become a monkey necklace - oof. Gotta find out which story that appears in!
Really boring covers for the unimaginatively-titled Modern Masters of Horror (Ace 1982/Berkley 1988). I had no idea Romero wrote any stories... who's read it? Also contains stories by Masterton, Laymon, Hallahan, and Davis Grubb, who wrote the original novel Night of the Hunter (1953), as well as one of my most desired books (most desired because I came across a paperback copy about five or six years ago and didn't buy it), Twelve Tales of the Supernatural (1964).
Oh man, hilarious. Skulls and eyeballs once again!
I rather dig these covers, both by Tor regular Jill Bauman, for Grant's Midnight titles (Tor 1985/1986), although that first one is kinda tasteless in a somewhat sexist way, what can I say? The creeepy clown is a great touch though!
J.N. Williamson published the best of the best in his Masques series that ran throughout the 1980s, but only this last Best of was published in paperback in the States, in '88. Looking at the contents, I know all the names but not all the stories. Has anyone read King's "Popsy" from '87? I've been hearing about it for, oh, 20+ years...
Tropical Chills (Avon 1988) features lots of science fictioners like Brian Aldiss, Pat Cadigan, George Alec Effinger, and Gene Wolfe (been meaning to read all those writers!). I've seen it on various bookstore hunts but never pick it up; Koontz's name on the cover turns me right off. Thanks but no thanks!