Reading this anthology is introducing me to the work of many authors whom I’ve not read before, but one of the drawbacks is that I’m getting only isolated snapshots of what each writer’s work is like, which isn’t necessarily the best way to judge whether I’d like to read more in future. After reading ‘Seaton’s Aunt’, I looked up De la Mare’s entry in The Encyclopedia of Fantasy, which gave me the impression of an author whose work I’d find interesting. But I found this particular story — chronicling its narrator’s three encounters with his friend’s elderly aunt, said to be ‘in league with the Devil’ — too dry to engage with. I wonder whether, had I read it in the context of a volume of De la Mare stories, I’d have felt differently.

Rating: **½