On the 1 August this year Montague Rhodes James would have celebrated his 150th birthday. It would be very difficult to overestimate the enormous influence the quiet academic has had on the horror genre, inspiring authors like Stephen King and Ramsey Campbell. That influence continues to inspire newer writers such as Gary McMahon and Adam Nevill, the latter being touted as a direct heir to the Provost of King’s College, Oxford. Certainly, Nevill’s economy of language and his manner of instilling (and sustaining) fear and dread with the sparsest of prose is reminiscent of the master storyteller at his finest.
The influence of MR James on the horror genre
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