The Dim, Dark-Toned Room

The Shell of Sense  by Olivia Howard Dunbar (1940s)

 Tuesday’s Tale of Terror   April 26, 2016



If you’ve ever mused about what it’s like to be newly dead, here is a story about two sisters, one who has recently passed but remains earthbound. Theresa and Frances. And, Frances’ husband Allan.

It is Frances who has passed but lingers in her home with her sister Theresa and Allan.


“No spirit still unreleased can understand the pang that I felt with Allan sitting almost within my touch. Almost irresistibly the wish beset me to let him for an instant feel my nearness.”


Frances manifests herself as transiently, as a thought. “I could produce the merest necessary flicker, like the shadow of a just-opened leaf, on his trembling, tortured consciousness.”

Oliva Howard Dunbar writes more than a ghost story here. And even more than a love story. Beautifully written, this short story is about jealously and love and will soothe as much as it will haunt.




Olivia Howard Dunbar was Massachusetts-born in 1873, active in the Suffrage Movement, and became editor of New York World. Her stories were published in Harpers and The Dial. She is most famous for her essay  The Decay of the Ghost in Fiction. She also wrote The Long Chamber, The Sycamore, and The Dream Baby.



Read the short story The Shell of Sense at


Don’t forget to view the INDEX above of more free Tales of Terror. This is a compendium of over 170 short stories by over 100 master storytellers of mystery,  supernatural, horror, and ghost stories. Join me in reading one short story every other week! Comments are welcome.

Other Reading Web Sites to Visit

Slattery’s Art of Horror Magazine

Books & Such   Bibliophilica    Lovecraft Ezine     Horror Novel Reviews     

Monster Librarian 

 Rob Around Books      The Story Reading Ape Blog

For Authors/Writers:  The Writer Unboxed


Filed under fiction, ghost stories, Ghosts, horror blogs, quiet horror, short stories, short story blogs, supernatural

2 responses to “The Dim, Dark-Toned Room

  1. Pingback: The Dim, Dark-Toned Room | Slattery's Art of Horror Magazine

  2. Never heard of her before. Thanks for introducing her to people such as myself!

    Liked by 1 person

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