"The first notable literary advocate of the Satanist, alchemist and child-killer Gilles de Rais remains J-K Huysmans, famous for his novel A Rebours and its quintessential decadent, Des Esseintes. Huysmans' later novel La-Bas (1891), a virtual apology for Satanism, is threaded by a version of the de Rais story as narrated by the book's protagonist, Durtal. Punctuated by the author's own poetic interventions, this account depicts de Rais as an arch-decadent beset by demonic visions and ravening sexual manias — "the 15th century Des Esseintes". A most intriguing "sequel" to this examination of evil is now provided by the first ever English translation of Huysmans' pamphlet Sorcery in Poitou (La Sorcellerie En Poitou, also known as La Magie En Poitou), published in 1897 in a limited edition for private circulation only. Described by Huysmans as a reductionist, non-fiction version of La-Bas, it demonstrates the ongoing fascination exerted by de Rais over the author. This special ebook edition of Sorcery in Poitou also includes Instrumentum Diaboli, Huysmans' notorious essay on the Satanic artist Felicien Rops, whose work The Sacrifice is featured on the front cover."