Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997)
Birkin, Charles

(1907-1985) UK writer, editor and businessman; from 1942 5th Baronet Birkin. He became, in 1932, editor for the publisher Philip Allan and worked on Creeps Library (1932-1936), for which he compiled a series of anthologies – to which he also contributed stories (as Charles Lloyd). Creeps Library included his own first collection, Devil's Spawn (coll 1936). His work is routine but intense, with the emphasis on physical horror and the Conte Cruel. CB stopped writing in 1939 until interest in his work was revived in the 1960s by Dennis Wheatley and Herbert van Thal; he then produced a stream of collections and was for a period very popular, his tales being likened to those of Edgar Allan Poe and Roald Dahl. His best stories were assembled in The Kiss of Death (coll 1964) and The Smell of Evil (coll 1965) – both books include tales of spirit Possession and occultism. Later collections are Where Terror Stalked (coll 1966), My Name is Death (coll 1966), Dark Menace (coll 1968), So Pale, So Cold (coll 1970) and Spawn of Satan (coll 1971 US). CB edited The Tandem Book of Ghost Stories (anth 1965; vt The Haunted Dancers 1967 US) and The Tandem Book of Horror Stories (anth 1965; vt The Witch Baiter 1967 US). [MA]

Charles Lloyd Birkin

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This entry is taken from the Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997) edited by John Clute and John Grant. It is provided as a reference and resource for users of the SF Encyclopedia, but apart from possible small corrections has not been updated.