1903: ‘The Riddle’ by Walter de la Mare

July 28, 2008

Hertzsprung-Russell rating: G10-3.5

Available in: 75 Short Masterpieces


A rambling old grandmother in an equally rambling old house warns her grandkids to steer clear of the magical trunk in the attic – it’ll swallow them whole, she warns. They ignore her (as all elderly people everywhere should be ignored) and, sure enough, they vanish one by one as they climb inside. No big loss: if the magical trunk didn’t get them, the bewitched china cabinet or the enchanted credenza would have.

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