Introductions

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Tim Spencer
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Introductions

Post by Tim Spencer » Wed 26 Apr, 2006 22:12:37

Good evening, my name is Tim Spencer, 35 years of age and I have just joined The Library. I am almost a life-long fan of Dennis Wheatley having started on The Devil Rides Out aged about 7 years old. My mother had an entire collection of Reader's Digest Wheatleys which I absolutely loved and which formed the foundations of my ongoing interest in reading great stories.

I confess that my love of Wheatley's work fell into a quiet period after I left home for art college in the early nineties, and has only just undergone a resurrection this last month when I chanced upon a paperback edition The Haunting Of Toby Jugg in a second hand shop in Hastings. Since then I have been eagerly hunting down Wheatleys to re-read and enjoy once again.

I look forward to learning more about the man and his work in due course!

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Post by Bob Rothwell » Thu 27 Apr, 2006 19:02:43

Welcome Tim! I'm thrilled to see a man of taste at the tender age of 35! However, I do notice your memory has already got a bit fudged :doubt: I nearly got a big surge of adrenalin when I saw your mention of an entire collection of Wheatley Reader's Digests. For some years, I have been wondering if any of his titles had made into the condensed form, but have never come across any. Then the penny dropped. 2006 minus 35 = 1971 + 7 = 1978. A good period for the red-leather looking Herons! (check out my ?Heron page) Have I surmised it correctly or are you going to get my adrenalin going again? If so, more details, please!

In the meantime enjoy your browsing of the site and if you have any suggestions please let me know.

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Post by Tim Spencer » Thu 27 Apr, 2006 19:28:44

Excellent work Bob, it was indeed a collection Heron books! Only I didn't know that until I saw the pictures on your Heron page just now. For some reason I have always thought they were Reader's digest hardbacks - My mom had an entire mock-library of red leather-look hardbacks lining the walls of our tiny living room in the 70's. Some of them were Reader's Digest I am certain but without doubt the Wheatleys were bound exactly as your pictures depict. The entire collection added a touch of class and sophistication to our modern semi-detached box home in Birmingham, as did the horse-brasses and two wooden canons that protected the gas fire from invasion. I tried reading most of the other authors my mom had collected but only ever got a thrill from Mr W's work and the Dickens'.

I also had a copy of that pendant with the Egyptian looking heiroglyphs on it that you have on the Heron page too. I would imagine that is still probably knocking around somewhere in my parent's house - I don't suppose its worth half a million is it?. Sadly, the Wheatleys are no longer around. My parents decided to go ultra-modern in the nineties and took the entire collection to a jumble sale when I moved out.

Great site by the way, and very glad to have found it. I'll be sure to let you know if I have any ideas or suggestions. In the meantime I am scouring all sources for any editions of any of his great stories. I'm not a book collector so any old half-chewed paperback will do me. If you had any good leads do let me know.

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Post by Bob Rothwell » Fri 28 Apr, 2006 21:18:14

Tim, great answer, very picturesque! Thanks for that (I had forgotten our horse-brasses!).

Re collecting, you can't do any better these days than browse eBay. An awful lot of ragged paperbacks appear there every day and can be got for as little as 10p (+p&p), although I would say the average price is about the £1 mark. A good search entry in their Advanced Search page to find most offerings with only a few non-DW items appearing might be:
Enter keyword or item number
"Denis Wheatley" "Dennis Wheatley" "Denise Wheatley" "D Wheatley"
In this category
All Categories
Make sure 'Search title and description' is ticked.

You'll certainly see a lot of the Herons coming up for auction if ever you feel like re-creating your childhood memories!

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Post by Lark » Sun 7 May, 2006 22:15:26

Hello All,

I'm 27yr old from Ireland, turned 27 this last week so I dont know if that makes me younger than average or not for this forum, my mum and dad where fans of Dennis Wheatley when I was growing up but I never read a Dennis Wheatley book until I think I was 21yrs old, having been born and raised a Roman Catholic I had a terror of all things to do with the devil or occult, that terror hasnt gone away but its evolved a little so I'm equally intrigued now,

The first book I read was a recent reprint of The Devil Rides out and then a copy of The Satanist that my dad had in the house in a utility room cupboard, which had a goat on the cover with a stained glass window behind it, and a head on photo of a goat on the back and "An Occult Story" on the cover, the very appearence of that book instilled me with fear as a child, after reading that I got paper backs of all DW's other occult stories, one of two of the books from the occult library that he wrote introductions for and a few of his action stories from an uncle who stored them up over the years,

Satanists in the woods, would you believe, is still a popular folk legend in Northern Ireland, not least because an undercurrent of pretty horrendous behaviour actually does exist on the fringes of the northern irish heavy metal music scene which takes an interest in being the very things the tabloids like to report,

I like to read a lot of the thinly veiled political content in Wheatley's books, things really have changed since he wrote, perhaps forever not for better, American ascendency of the UK and Europe has proceeded leaps and bounds, the liberal or class consensus in politics and the welfare state is a thing of the past, Wheatley's attitudes to women, the disabled or ethnic diversity are the stuff of embarrassing grandparents, yet, the man could write stories that shouldnt ever be edited for political correctness and shouldnt ever be out of print,

I'm only sorry that I havent been able to get a copy of Wheatley's actual researches on the occult, including theosophy, thelma or the thule (spelling) society, "The Devil and All His Works" I think it was called, though I was able to get a copy of Arthur Edward Waite's "Book of Spells" which seems to cover a lot of the same ground as Wheatley's novels,

I hope I havent bored you all and I think this forum is really great,

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Post by Bob Rothwell » Mon 8 May, 2006 16:30:57

Lark - A very warm welcome to you and I look forward to more of the same! And yes, you're probably in the minority age-wise, but certainly not, thank goodness, unique!

Re The Devil and all His Works, there's nearly always a copy or two going for reasonable amounts on eBay.co.uk. Give it a try.

More stories of Irish Satanic goings-on would be very welcome!

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Post by Lark » Mon 8 May, 2006 20:54:59

Heyah Bob,

great to meet you, this is a great forum and an even better site, I'll check out ebay soon,

Irish satanic going ons can be pretty much split into music scenes and related cultures, goofy tree hugging hippy adherents of wicca, hellfire clubs, the real macoy (very rare),

has anyone read any of Kelley Armstrongs books? Wheatley fans may like either Industrial Magic or Dime Store Magic,

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Post by Bob Rothwell » Mon 8 May, 2006 21:07:29

Lark, Kelley Armstrong? Not a name I know anything about, but I'm sure gloomysundae and Frank Linmarsh will be able to add something to this?

Thanks for the compliments, can take those anytime :D. If you have any suggestions for the site, please let me know. I'll probably take no notice, but you never know!

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Post by Lark » Mon 8 May, 2006 21:19:15

maybe something wheatleyish like a section of mixing drinks like Planters Punch :D

KA is a recent Canadian writer, though some of her books featuring soucery or witch craft are similar to some Wheatley stories,

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Post by Bob Rothwell » Mon 8 May, 2006 21:31:12

maybe something wheatleyish like a section of mixing drinks like Planters Punch :D
Great idea. Get hold of a copy of his history of Justerini & Brooks: he includes some mixes there! I'll try and dig some out and post a selection.

Someone else also promised me scans of a DW contribution to a 60s cookery book, but hasn't got round to it yet! (Hint)

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Post by Lark » Mon 8 May, 2006 22:30:12

I've read of two or three different ways to mix planters punch, Americans have a different version of it to everyone else

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Post by Bob Rothwell » Mon 8 May, 2006 23:47:43

I think I'll start a new section called Gourmet's Corner; in the meantime, no Planter's Punch, but a couple more to keep you going:
[align=center]SACK POSSET[/align]
Beat up the yolks and whites of fifteen eggs, and strain them; then put three-quarters of a pound of white sugar into a pint of Canary wine and mix it with your eggs in a basin. Set the mixture over a chafing dish of coals, and keep continually stirring it till it is scalding hot. Grate some nutmeg into a quart of milk and boil it, then pour it into your eggs and wine. As you pour it, hold your hand very high, and let another person keep stirring it all the time. Then take it off, set it before the fire half an hour, then serve it up.

[align=center]HOT PUNCH[/align]
Remove the rind of a lemon by rubbing it off with a quarter of a pound of lump sugar. Put the sugar, with a pinch of grated nutmeg, a pinch of cinnamon and six cloves, into a saucepan. Add half-a-pint of Brandy and half-a-pint of Rum. Boil a pint of water and pour it onto the other ingredients. Then heat the whole gently by the side of the fire but do not let it reach boiling point. Strain the juice of the lemon into the punch-bowl, add the hot liquor and serve in small cups or glasses.

[align=center]AN EVERLASTING SYLLABUB[/align]
Put three pints of good thick cream into an earthen pan, with half-a-pint of Rhenish wine, half-a-pint of Sack, the juice of two large Sevile oranges, the rind of three lemons grated and a pound of sifted sugar. Beat all together well with a whisk for half-an-hour, then with a spoon take off the froth and lay it gently on a sieve. Fill your glasses with the mixture and top them up as high as possible with the froth.
:smt030 mmmmm, the only way to sample them!

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Post by Lark » Tue 9 May, 2006 20:20:07

Fantastic Bob, thanks for these,

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Post by Bob Rothwell » Tue 9 May, 2006 21:18:21

And, as promised, the complete selection:

Justerini extracts

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Post by captain_ginger » Tue 22 Aug, 2006 12:51:40

Hello to all, just to briefly introduce myself: I retired from the telecoms industry a few years ago, and now keep myself busy buying and selling antiques and collectables. Got into DW in the late sixties, and have dipped in and out of his works over the years. He certainly had an influence over my lifestyle choices during my formative years - mostly to do with indulging in the finer material things in life, at least when the opportunity presents itself!

Hope to get to meet you all in due course,

Steve

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