Mrs Henrietta Dorothy Everett (1851-1923) was one of the most renowned Victorian horror writers, often publishing her spine-tingling tales under the pen name Theo Douglas. The Death Mask is one of the weirdest and most chilling of her short stories. It tells the tale of a widower who had made a peculiar promise to his late wife on her deathbed. At face value it had seemed such a simple thing... just to cover the dead woman's face with a particular cloth. But the events which follow this act, at the moment itself and in subsequent years, are terrifying in the extreme.
I rareky review, but it took me months to choose to pay for this story and acquaint myself with this author, so I'll say why I am disgusted with the product. What might have been a reasonably enjoyable ghost story was made ridiculous because the actress had to harden her voice to sound male, which destroyed any chance for nuances of tenderness, fearfulness, dread, or regret, badly needed for a listener to suspend disbelief and get into this story. The monotone hardness of the actress's tone promises more terror than this story can probably deliver with less skilled an actor than, say, Simon Vance or Benedict Cumberbatch. The annoying monotone moreso than the narrator's gender, in and of itself (she should have just read it as a woman and a good actress), makes the events of this somewhat delicate story laughable instead of creepy.