"Hanns Heinz Ewers was born in Dusseldorf in 1871. He gained notoriety at an early age with a volume of satiric poetry and held onto it by forming a controversial itinerant theater company He produced several volumes of short stories and a series of remarkable novels, "The Sorcerer's Apprentice " "Alraune" (filmed in the 1920's) and "Vampire," between 1907 and 1922. He went on to achieve limited prominence as a Nazi, dying in Berlin in 1943."
"Ewers rejected the literary conventions of his day, and is regarded as a minor literary figure in Germany today. His stories and novels are often regarded as works of fantasy, though there is really very little of the supernatural in them. They are more properly horror stories with an emphasis on the extremes of human experience, displaying an unhealthy, but fascinating, interest in pain, madness, and perversity. Ewers never forgot entirely the folk tales at the base of all Germanic fiction, and many of his stories resemble evil fables. The brief example that follows is typical."
— William Wallace