A collection of stories.
- Introduction, by Mark Finn
- Pigeons from Hell
- The Last Hour
- Lines Written in the Realization That I Must Die
- A Thunder of Trumpets
- The Ghost Kings
- The King and the Oak
- Desert Dawn
- The Hills of Kandahar
- Song at Midnight
- Witch from Hell's Kitchen
- But the Hills Were Ancient Then
- The One Black Stain
The final volume of the Weird Works of Robert E. Howard contains
the last of Howard’s stories and poems published in Weird Tales and
elsewhere, many placed after his death. While these works seem disparate
by virtue of the fact that they are not part of a greater “cycle” of
tales, they are in no way inferior to the Conan or Cthulhu Mythos tales.
In fact, two of the best stories Howard ever wrote are contained in
this final volume.
“Pigeons from Hell” is a dark southern gothic horror story that
grabs the reader right away and refuses to let go until the genuinely
creepy ending. The two protagonists in the story may be thinly disguised
versions of Howard himself and pen pal H.P. Lovecraft, who scoffed at
the Southern part of the country’s ability to summon any ghostly
folklore that could rival New England’s. Readers may consider this to be
Howard’s final word on that particular subject.
In the annals of Howard fans, his lone sword-and-planet novel, Almuric, is something of a cult classic. Originally conceived as a novel
for a British publisher, Otto Binder may have completed it to make it
“The Witch From Hell’s Kitchen” is another odd tale. Not one of the
“historical Oriental adventures” that Howard wrote (although there is
some intrigue and derring-do involved), nor a straightforward horror
story either, it bends genres. You don’t really know where this is one
is going until you get to the end.
A fine selection of Howard’s verse, including “The Ghost
Kings,” “A Thunder of Trumpets,” and “The King and the Oak,” rounds out