Special offer: Leytonstone, Albion Fay, & The Bureau of Them

All three of the titles mentioned in the heading will be launched at Edge-Lit 4 this year in Derby, UK on July 11th, where the authors will be in attendance to sign copies. But we here at Chateau Spectrale like to share the love around, and so we have decided to make all three limited hardbacks available as a package at a special price for a limited time (until the end of the month). All prices include postage to the respective regions of the globe.

LEYTONSTONE by Stephen Volk

"Leytonstone" ©Stephen Volk/Spectral Press 2014. Artwork ©Ben Baldwin 2014

“Leytonstone” ©Stephen Volk/Spectral Press 2014. Artwork ©Ben Baldwin 2014

One evening in 1906 a chubby little boy of seven, son of a London greengrocer, is taken by his father to visit the local police station.

There he suddenly finds himself, inexplicably, locked up for a crime he hasn’t committed – or has he? Blinking into sunlight, traumatized by his overnight stay, he is told by his father the next morning: “Now you know what happens to naughty little boys!” But the incident is the catalyst for a series of events that will scar, and create, the world’s leading Master of Terror in the century to come…

The boy is Alfred Hitchcock.

ALBION FAY by Mark Morris

Albio Fay ©2014 Mark Morris/Spectral Press. Artwork ©2014 Ben Baldwin

Albio Fay ©2014 Mark Morris/Spectral Press. Artwork ©2014 Ben Baldwin

Albion Fay, a holiday house in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by nature’s bounty. For the adults, a time for relaxation and to recharge the batteries, while for the children, a chance for exploration and adventure in the English countryside. A happy time for all: nothing could possibly go wrong. Or could it? What should be a magical time ends in tragedy – but what really happened that summer?

THE BUREAU OF THEM by Cate Gardner

You’re not the first to talk to your dead here, the vagrant said. The living always chase after their dead until they come upon their own.

Formed from shadow and dust, ghosts inhabit the abandoned office building, angry at the world that denies them. When Katy sees her deceased boyfriend in the window of the derelict building, she finds a way in, hoping to be reunited. Instead, the dead ignore, the dead do not see and only the monster that is Yarker Ryland has need of her there.


£50UK (Normally £63 incl. p+p)

£60EU (Normally £72 incl. of p+p)


$120US & RoW (Normally $150 incl. of p+p)

Coming up soon: two new books

Spectral Press logoNews of some two new books due to arrive in mid-2015:

THE BUREAU OF THEM by Cate Gardner

First, we have Cate Gardner’s new novella The Bureau of Them, due to be published in June and launched at this year’s Edge-Lit event in Derby in July (alongside Mark Morris’ Albion Fay and Stephen Volk’s Leytonstone). Expect a story of Cate’s trademark dark surrealism and slightly-twisted realities, plus a cover from David Chatton-Barker which will be with us in a couple of weeks. In the meantime you can preorder the limited hardback and the unlimited paperback:




$50US & RoW




$40US & RoW

BACK FROM THE DEAD edited by Johnny Mains

Terror by Night - cover for Johnny Main's "Back From the Dead". Artwork © 1974/2013 Les Edwards.

Terror by Night – cover for Johnny Main’s “Back From the Dead”. Artwork © 1974/2013 Les Edwards.

Some years ago, Johnny Mains issued this eBook only volume of stories with the subtitle The Legacy of the Pan Book of Horror Stories. Spectral will be reissuing it with new material in paperback in May, with a cover by Les Edwards (see above). Preorder on the buttons below:



$40US & RoW

Look forward to hearing from you! 

STOP PRESS: new Cate Gardner novella acquired

Nowhere Hall cover image

Those of you who have followed Spectral’s progress over the years will recognise the atmospheric Daniele Serra cover above, the one that graced Cate Gardner’s superb chapbook Nowhere Hall. So, it is with a huge sense of pride that we can announce that Spectral will be publishing a novella by the lovely Cate in early 2015 called The Bureau of Them. Once again we will be visiting Cate’s slightly twisted and not-quite-right view of things, where the worlds of the living and dead collide, and where hope dangles precariously from the slenderest of threads. Cate has the enviable ability of make the most ordinary absolutely extraordinary, and of investing beautiful colour into the most monochrome of everyday realities. The Bureau of Them is no exception – this is definitely a piece of writing to look forward to!

More details as and when!

Some new reviews

What Gets Left Behind cover image

It’s the day after returning from this year’s FantasyCon shindig, where a great time was had by all (we will be reporting on it tomorrow on these very pages), but in the meantime we have three new reviews to tell you about. First are two write-ups on the latest chapbook, What Gets Left Behind by Mark West, from British Fantasy Award-winner Angela Slatter (posted to her blog) and James Everington (posted on GoodReads) respectively. You can find Angela’s review here and James’ here.

Nowhere Hall cover image

The third review is from Angela Slatter again, but this time concerning Cate Gardner’s Nowhere Hall  – you can read the review here.

Apologies for the shortness of today’s blog, still feeling shattered, but there will be more reviews soon, plus a rundown of Spectral’s FantasyCon weekend tomorrow!

Onwards and upwards!

Nowhere Hall returns to haunt once more

Nowhere Hall cover image

To paraphrase something someone once said, you can never keep a good story down – which is certainly true in the case of Cate Gardner’s Nowhere Hall, as here comes a new review, written by Ann Giardina Magee and posted on The Horrifically Horrifying Horror Blog. You can find out what Ann said about Cate’s tale here.


A small heads up: Alison Littlewood’s Spectral chapbook The Eyes of Water will be available within the first two weeks of June – all subscribers and individual purchasers will have received their copies by the end of the month. Many thanks for your patience.

Nowhere Hall still haunts

Nowhere Hall cover image

Just over six months after it was published, we’re still getting the occasional review of Cate Gardner’s chapbook, Nowhere Hall. The one we’re about to link you to was posted on The Horrifically Horrifying Horror Blog yesterday by Shaun Hamilton, who also wrote the piece. Hop on over to the review by clicking here. Thanks to Shaun for the review!


Two things – first, the limited hardback is in the process of being printed even as this is being written, so the final product should be with us very soon, within the next ten days we should think. As soon as the stock arrives the books will be despatched to those who pre-ordered them.

Secondly, expect the first reviews of the novella to start appearing here very soon…

Black Static visits Nowhere Hall: a review

Yes, Cate Gardner’s Nowhere Hall has been out for a while now, but the fine reviewer at Black Static magazine, Peter Tennant, has been saving a few things by this excellent writer so he could review them all at once. And so, in the latest issue of the magazine (#27), Peter reviews not just Cate’s chapbook, but also two of her recent novellas, Barbed Wire Hearts (Delirium) and Theatre of Curious Acts (Hadley Rille Books), both of which are eminently worth getting hold of.  As he writes so eloquently of Cate, she is indeed in a “genre of one”.

Getting to the main point here, however, Peter says of Nowhere Hall:

“It’s almost a stream of consciousness ghost story, if there can be such a thing, with events bleeding into each other and surreal imagery (e.g. Death as a man with an umbrella), not a word wasted and imagery laden with meaning, so that you almost instantly want to read the work again and pick up on all the things you missed first time around, and then again after that, with the assurance that there will always be something new waiting to be discovered.”

Further, Peter also says:

“It is a tale that is as unique as it is eminently readable, the ghost story as something strangely beautiful and beautifully strange.”

However, if you want to read what else Peter says about Nowhere Hall, as well as Barbed Wire Hearts  and Theatre of Curious Acts, then you’ll just have to hunt down a copy of Black Static #27, which is published by TTA Press.

More reviews soon!!

A double review and some news

Today’s review is a double one, courtesy of the fine folk at Shock Totem, specifically a gentleman by the name of John Boden. Like his previous review of Spectral chapbooks for the same magazine, he’s chosen to review two at once and this time out it’s the turn of Cate Gardner’s Nowhere Hall and Paul Finch’s King Death. John loved the first two Spectral publications, so does he feel the same about Volumes III & IV? Click here to find out!


After yesterday’s announcement and call for submissions for the first Spectral Christmas Ghost Story Annual 2012, I have now moved that blog to a new page so that access to the guidelines is permanent until the deadlin of June 30th. If you’re interested and want to know whatt you need to do to submit, then please just click on the relevant page. Thanks!!

Reviews and news

Don’t know about you, but it felt like Christmas had come early at Spectral Towers yesterday – TWO reviews of King Death and a write-up on Cate Gardner’s Nowhere Hall! So, without further ado, here they are:

King Death review number one is courtesy of David Hebblethwaite from his Follow the Thread blog. David notes especially one aspect of the story which I completely agree with and would love to see happen at some time – that Paul Finch’s tale begs to be read aloud. In common with quite a few other reviewers who have made similar observations, the rich cadences, poetry and power of his descriptive language immediately plunges the reader headlong into the picture of the medieval world Finch is painting and would lend itself readily to an atmospheric live reading. I sincerely hope that one day in the future this will indeed come to pass, maybe in some grand old hall or castle. The rest of the review can be read here and is the second one down the page.

Meanwhile, the second King Death review is one from a good friend and subscriber, Tim James, to which he gave 5 stars and posted to Goodreads. In this particular case I will quote the write-up in full here, with his permission:

“I feel slightly guilty in reviewing this chapbook when I have not reviewed the previous publications – even more so as I always intended to… 

Spectral Press is (at the moment) a small independent publishing company with a big heart and aspirations and seem to be making a solid impact on the scene, making it something to watch. 

Their output, for the moment, is limited to chapbooks – stories of about 20+ pages, all with a slightly spectral bent.

King Death is, as stated the fourth book released to date, it seems to be the least ghostly of the first four, but is (only just) my favourite. 

Set during the reign of King Edward III of England, it tells the tale of a single man, using the decimation of the plague to make his own selfish advantage. 

In such a short story there is limited room for character development, but Finch keeps the cast small, basically two characters, the main character Rodric a veteran of countless campaigns and a young boy he encounters on his travels. But it is not these two characters that so illuminated the chapbook for me, it was the description of the landscape, the plague ravaged country that really sold the book. 

There is a genuine feel of a land fallen into decay as people are viciously claimed by something that could only have been seen as the wrath of god. There is a sense of hopelessness and a constant darkness that evokes the feeling of a time that has to be seen as one of the darkest in Europe’s history.

That Finch manages to capture this in just 22 pages is a testament to his skill as a writer. 

The last line though, sells the whole thing, and just keeps it within the realms of Spectral Press’ remit.”

Thanks to Tim for taking the time and trouble to write up a review!

Next up then is a rather spiffing review of Nowhere Hall, this time from the virtual pen of Glynn James (no relation to Tim, by the way!) and posted to his personal website. It’s another great write-up of a wonderful (and wondrous) tale by an equally wonderful writer – and Glynn provides food for thought in his last paragraph. If you want to know what he says about it, then please click here.


Spectral is already thinking about the future, 2014 to be precise. Eagle-eyed readers will have noticed two new additions to the publishing roster listed at the top right-hand corner of the home page – Rob Shearman and Angela Slatter. Both these fine writers are award-winning authors, and Spectral is very excited and pleased to be able to add them to the swelling ranks of great authors joining the imprint’s already fine roster. More details will follow in due course!

A review from Innsmouth

And still the reviews for Nowhere Hall come in, just as I am about to publish the latest volume in Spectral’s chapbook series. This one is from The Innsmouth Free Press and is a very in-depth look at Cate Gardner’s story, perceptively drawing out the underlying details and flavour of the tale. Again, I am glad that it’s yet another tick in the positive column and if you want to read what reviewer Josh Reynolds said about it, then please click here.

If you have missed out on this or any of the other previously published chapbooks, then you’ll be pleased to know that they will all be reprinted in a collected volume at some point in the future, and the collection will also feature extra content. Keep checking back here regularly for updates on that and all the other exciting things in store for Spectral in 2012 and beyond!