M. R. James wrote, arguably, the finest supernatural tales in English literature, and this collection contains the best of them, including 'Canon Alberic's Scrapbook', 'Oh, Whistle, and I'll Come To You, My Lad', 'Lost Hearts', 'Casting the Runes', and 'Count Magnus'. James was something of an actor and gifted storyteller and read his tales aloud to select gatherings on many a Christmas Eve. His intention, he said, was to implant in his listener the idea that, 'if I am not careful, something of this kind might happen to me!' James (1862-1936) was an English medieval scholar and provost of King's College, Cambridge, and then Eton College. His ghost stories are beautifully crafted, ranging from the insidiously unsettling to the totally terrifying; his characters may catch the slightest movement out of the corner of their eye or hear, in the depths of the night, an indistinct rustling from a neighbouring bed. His professional interest in antiquarianism pervades many stories. He uses everyday contemporary settings like houses, omnibuses, hotels, golf courses, schools, and beaches, making the intrusion of the supernatural that much more unnerving. For Magpie Audio, narrator Greg Wagland relishes the opportunity to raise a goose bump or two.