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Best Horror Novels and Stories On-Going Discussion

blocho
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#201

Post by blocho »

flavo5000 wrote: June 25th, 2022, 10:20 pm Image
140. The House with a Clock in its Walls (John Bellairs, 1973)
That's a blast from the past. I read 14 Bellairs books when I was a kid, though I was so young that I remember nothing about them.
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flavo5000
Posts: 6182
Joined: July 10th, 2014, 6:00 am
Location: Arkansas, USA
Contact:

#202

Post by flavo5000 »

Image
142. Spirit Hunters (Ellen Oh, 2017)
Harper just moved into a new town where she feels alone and ostracized. To make matters worse, her family have moved into a haunted house and her little brother Michael has been possessed by a malevolent spirit that Harper has no idea how to get rid of. As Harper learns more of the history of the house and with the help of a friendly ghost named Rose and a powerful spirit hunter that may be more familiar to her than she realizes, she begins to think she might actually be able to help free Michael of the evil spirit that's taking control of him.
This was a pretty decent little book intended for middle schoolers that acts as a pretty solid Exorcist-lite intro to horror for the younger set. While the writing is a little juvenile at times with Harper's little brother Michael being pretty damned annoying both pre- and post-possession, it's still a pretty engaging if not predictable novel that should deliver some mild scares for the younger members of your household. It's definitely a step above any Goosebumps book I've read, and is apparently the first in a burgeoning series that follows Harper on her journey to becoming a powerful spirit hunter.
To Read (156)
tr][td] Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation [/td][td] Octavia E. Butler, John Jennings and Damian Duffy [/td][/tr]
Title Author
The Passage Justin Cronin
We Have Always Lived in the Castle Shirley Jackson
The Historian Elizabeth Kostova
The Wasp Factory Iain Banks
Hell House Richard Matheson
The Silent Companions Laura Purcell
Her Fearful Symmetry Audrey Niffenegger
Fledgling Octavia E. Butler
Whispers Dean Koontz
The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket Edgar Allan Poe
Carrion Comfort Dan Simmons
Zone One Colson Whitehead
Ring Koji Suzuki
The Changeling Victor LaValle
HEX Thomas Olde Heuvelt
Pandemonium Daryl Gregory
Winter Tide Ruthanna Emrys
Last Days Brian Evenson
Heart-Shaped Box Joe Hill
The Snowman Jo Nesbø
The Case Against Satan Ray Russell
Night Film Marissa Pessl
Drawing Blood Poppy Z. Brite
The Last Werewolf Glen Duncan
Lovecraft Country Matt Ruff
Three Moments of an Explosion: Stories China Miéville
The Walls Around Us Nova Ren Suma
Mr. Shivers Robert Jackson Bennett
Fiend: A Novel Peter Stenson
The Frangipani Hotel: Fiction Violet Kupersmith
Rosemary's Baby Ira Levin
Those Across the River Christpher Buehlman
Let the Right One In John Ajvide Lindqvist
The Collector John Fowles
Queen of the Damned Anne Rice
World War Z Max Brooks
"Young Goodman Brown" Nathaniel Hawthorne
Down a Dark Hall Lois Duncan
Intensity Dean Koontz
The Atrocity Archives Charles Stross
The Cipher Kathe Koja
Bloodchild Octavia E. Butler
The Screwfly Solution James Tiptree Jr.
Elizabeth Ken Greenhall
"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" Joyce Carol Oates
Goosebumps (The Complete Series #1-#62) R.L. Stine
Lunar Park Bret Easton Ellis
Minion L.A. Banks
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories Edited by Ann VanderMeer
The Imago Sequence and Other Stories Laird Barron
The Jumbies Tracey Baptiste
The Werewolf of Paris Guy Endore
Furnace Livia Llewellyn
"Left Foot, Right Foot" Nalo Hopkinson
John Dies at the End David Wong
Grendel John Gardner
Northanger Abbey Jane Austen
Uncle Silas Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Out of Space and Time Clark Ashton Smith
Conjure Wife Fritz Lieber
The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch Phillip K. Dick
Worse Things Waiting Manly Wade Wellman
The Trial Franz Kafka
The Land of Laughs Jonathan Carroll
She H. Rider Haggard
The Painted Bird Jerzy Kosiński
The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner James Hogg
Hawksmoor Peter Ackroyd
Song of Kali Dan Simmons
Caleb Williams William Godwin
A Voyage to Arcturus Dave Lindsay
The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade Herman Melville
The Crystal World J.G. Ballard
The Dark Tower and Other Stories C.S. Lewis
The Green Man Kingsley Amis
The Lurker at the Threshold H.P. Lovecraft, August Derleth
The Black Spider Jeremias Gotthelf
The Wolfen Whitley Strieber
The Arabian Nightmare Robert Irwin
The White Devil John Webster
Something about Eve : a comedy of fig-leaves James Branch Cabell
The Totem David Morrell
The Wandering Jew Eugène Sue
All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By John Farris
Night has a Thousand Eyes Carnell Woolrich
The Compleat Werewolf and Other Stories of Fantasy and Science Fiction Anthony Boucher
Sweetheart, Sweetheart Bernard Taylor
The Dark Country Dennis Etchison
Quatermass and the Pit Nigel Kneale
Who Made Stevie Crye? Michael Bishop
In a Lonely Place Karl Edward Wagner
The Track of the Cat Walter Van Tilburg Clark
The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck Alexander Lang
John Silence, Physician Extraordinary Algernon Blackwood
Sub Rosa: Strange Tales Robert Aikman
Dark Feasts Ramsey Campbell
And the Darkness Falls Edited by Boris Karloff
Deliver Me from Eva Paul Bailey
The Last Bouquet: Some Twilight Tales Marjorie Bowen
The Sleeping and the Dead August Derleth
The Monk Matthew Lewis
The Hound of the Baskervilles Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë
Lost Worlds Clark Ashton Smith
Gormenghast Mervyn Peake
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street Stephen Sondheim
Edge of Running Water William Sloane
Harvest Home Thomas Tryon
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen Alan Garner
Who Fears the Devil? Manly Wade Wellman
The Book of Skulls Robert Silverberg
The Boats of the "Glen Carrig" William Hope Hodgson
The Midwich Cuckoos John Wyndham
The Collected Stories of Elizabeth Bowen Elizabeth Bowen
Tales from the Nightside Charles L. Grant
The Hunger and Other Stories Charles Beaumont
The Cement Garden Ian McEwan
Lost Souls Poppy Z. Brite
Outer Dark Cormac McCarthy
The Manuscript Found in Saragossa Jan Potocki
New Grub Street George Gissing
Peace Gene Wolfe
They Thirst Robert McCammon
The Dark Descent David G. Hartwell
Fantômas Marcel Allain
Prime Evil: New Stories by the Masters of Modern Horror Edited by Douglas E. Winter
Flicker Theodore Roszak
The Devil Rides Out Dennis Wheatley
The Course of the Heart M. John Harrison
Darkness Weaves Karl Edward Wagner
The Nightmare Factory Thomas Ligotti
A Wrinkle in the Skin John Christopher
Skin Kathe Koja
The Trail of Fu Manchu Sax Rohmer
Tales of Horror and the Supernatural Arthur Machen
By Bizarre Hands Joe R. Lansdale
A Scent of New-Mown Hay John Blackburn
The Opener of the Way Robert Bloch
The Playboy Book of Horror and the Supernatural Editors of Playboy
X,Y Michael Blumlein
More Tomorrow & Other Stories Michael Marshall Smith
The Third Ghost Book Edited by Lady Cynthia Asquith
The Off Season Jack Cady
Blood Sport Robert F. Jones
Creep, Shadow! Abraham Merritt
Sleep No More August Derleth
Reprisal Mitchell Smith
Feesters in the Lake Bob Leman
They Return at Evening H. Russell Wakefield
Jumbee and Other Uncanny Tales Henry S. Whitehead
A Haunting Beauty Charles Birkin
Year of the Sex Olympics: Three Television Plays Nigel Kneale
Fancies and Goodnights John Collier
Throat Sprockets Tim Lucas
Read (183)
Title Author
"The Lottery" Shirley Jackson
Lord of the Flies William Golding
"The Body" Stephen King
"The Monkey's Paw" W.W. Jacobs
Sandman Neil Gaiman
The Turn of the Screw Henry James
"The Tell-Tale Heart" Edgar Allan Poe
The House Next Door Anne Rivers Siddons
"Shadow Over Innsmouth" H.P. Lovecraft
The October Country Ray Bradbury
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Alvin Schwartz
30 Days of Night Steve Niles, Ben Templesmith
Ghost Story Peter Straub
The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Tales Edgar Allan Poe
Carrie Stephen King
It Stephen King
Something Wicked This Way Comes Ray Bradbury
Books of Blood 1 - 3 Clive Barker
House of Leaves Mark Z. Danielewski
Carmilla Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Uzumaki Junji Ito
"At the Mountains of Madness" H.P. Lovecraft
Haunting of Hill House Shirley Jackson
Frankenstein Mary Shelley
The Shining Stephen King
Dracula Bram Stoker
A Head Full of Ghosts Paul Tremblay
The Ruins Scott Smith
MacBeth William Shakespeare
The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Robert Louis Stevenson
Heart of Darkness Joseph Conrad
Salem's Lot Stephen King
The Man Who Was Thursday G.K. Chesterton
The Lurking Fear and Other Stories H.P. Lovecraft
Deathbird Stories Harlan Ellison
Johnny Got His Gun Dalton Trumbo
The Damnation Game Clive Barker
A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens
The War of the Worlds H.G. Wells
1984 George Orwell
American Psycho Bret Easton Ellis
Pet Sematary Stephen King
Misery Stephen King
The Phantom of the Opera Gaston Leroux
Coraline Neil Gaiman
Horrorstör Grady Hendrix
The Jewel of Seven Stars Bram Stoker
"The Yellow Wallpaper" Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Doctor Faustus Christopher Marlowe
Twice-Told Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne
Red Dragon Thomas Harris
"I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream" Harlan Ellison
Penpal Dathan Auerbach
Widdershins Oliver Onions
The Island of Dr. Moreau H.G. Wells
Goblin Market Christina Rossetti
Burnt Offerings Robert Marasco
The Road Cormac McCarthy
Invasion of the Body Snatchers Jack Finney
The Devil in America Kai Ashante Wilson
"Please Momma" Cheysa Burke
Meddling Kids Edgar Cantero
Wylding Hall Elizabeth Hand
From Hell Alan Moore, Eddie Campbell
The Stranger Albert Camus
Melmoth the Wanderer Charles Maturin
Infidel Pornsak Pichetshote
The Terror Dan Simmons
The Night They Missed the Horror Show Joe R. Lansdale
Anna Dressed in Blood Kendare Blake
Skin Folk Nalo Hopkinson
Interview with the Vampire Anne Rice
Come Closer Sara Gran
The Blind Owl Sadegh Heydayat
The Exorcist William Peter Blatty
City of Glass Paul Auster
The Devil in Silver Victor LaValle
The Fisherman John Langan
The Mask Dean Koontz
Psycho Robert Bloch
Gothic Tales Elizabeth Gaskell
The Queen of Spades Alexander Pushkin
NOS4A2: A Novel Joe Hill
The Beauty Aliya Whiteley
The Fifth Child Doris Lessing
The Six-Gun Tarot R.S. Belcher
Tales of Terror Charles Higham
The Bloody Chamber Angela Carter
The House on the Borderland William Hope Hodgson
The Girl with All the Gifts M.R. Carey
Experimental Film Gemma Files
I Am Legend Richard Matheson
Beloved Toni Morrison
Horror Horn E. F. Benson
Our Lady of Darkness Fritz Lieber
The Killer Inside Me Jim Thompson
Dark Forces Edited by Kirby McCauley
Dread Nation Justina Ireland
Mongrels: A Novel Stephen Graham Jones
The Grip of It Jac Jemc
The King in Yellow Robert W. Chambers
The Woman In Black Susan Hill
The Anubis Gates Tim Powers
Pages from Cold Point Paul Bowles
The Pet Charles L. Grant
Swan Song Robert McCammon
Her Body and Other Parties: Stories Carmen Maria Machado
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer Patrick Süskind
Parasite Eve Hideaki Sena
The Lesser Dead Christopher Buehlman
Fever Dream Samanta Schweblin
Bird Box Josh Malerman
Exquisite Corpse Poppy Z. Brite
Rotters Daniel Kraus
The Croning Laird Barron
The Cellar Richard Laymon
Collected Ghost Stories* M.R. James
Nightshade Derek Marlowe
The Vampire Lestat Anne Rice
The Troop Nick Cutter
The Sound of his Horn Sarban
White is for Witching Helen Oyeyemi
The Haunted Omnibus Edited by Alexander Laing
Through the Woods Emily Carroll
Mythago Wood Robert Holdstock
"All Our Salt-Bottled Hearts" Sonya Taaffe
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories H.P. Lovecraft
The Outsider, and Others H.P. Lovecraft
The Case of Charles Dexter Ward H.P. Lovecraft
The Ballad of Black Tom Victor LaValle
A Nest of Nightmares Lisa Tuttle
Dark Matter Michelle Paver
A Sight for Sore Eyes Ruth Rendell
Strange Toys Patricia Geary
The Best Tales of Hoffmann E. T. A. Hoffmann
Shutter Courtney Alameda
Some of Your Blood Theodore Sturgeon
The Bone Key Sarah Monette
The Elementals Michael McDowell
The Sheep Look Up John Brunner
Obscura Joe Hart
Finishing Touches Thomas Tessler
Alone with the Horrors Ramsey Campbell
"The Willows" Algernon Blackwood
The Revenger's Tragedy Thomas Middleton
Medusa : a Story of Mystery, and Ecstasy & Strange Horror E. H. Visiak
"It's a Good Life" Jerome Bixby
Broken Monsters Lauren Beukes
The Keep F. Paul Wilson
The House of Souls*** Arthur Machen
The Talented Mr. Ripley Patricia Highsmith
The Drowning Girl Caitlin R. Kiernan
Communion Whitley Strieber
The Other Thomas Tryon
Darker Than You Think Jack Williamson
Feed Mira Grant
Falling Angel William Hjortsberg
Things We Lost in the Fire: Stories Mariana Enriquez
Great Tales of Terror and the Supernatural Edited by Phyllis Fraser, Herbert Wise
The Grotesque Patrick McGrath
The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce Ambrose Bierce
The Ceremonies T. E. D. Klein
The Hunger Alma Katsu
Carnacki, the Ghost Finder William Hope Hodgson
The Face That Must Die Ramsey Campbell
Rebecca Daphne Du Maurier
Hammers on Bone Cassandra Khaw
Maplecroft Cherie Priest
The Night Stalker Jeff Rice
The Girl Next Door Jack Ketchum
A Stir of Echoes Richard Matheson
Nine Horrors and a Dream Joseph Payne Brennan
Silence of the Lambs Thomas Harris
The Bad Seed William March
Frankenstein in Baghdad Ahmed Saadawi
Shadowland Peter Straub
The Second Century of Creepy Stories Sir Hugh Walpole
The Good House Tananarive Due
The Handmaid's Tale Margaret Atwood
House of Flesh Bruno Fischer
The Red Tree Caitlin R. Kiernan
The House with a Clock in its Walls John Bellairs
Murgunstrumm and Others Hugh B. Cave
Spirit Hunters Ellen Oh

[/quote]
User avatar
flavo5000
Posts: 6182
Joined: July 10th, 2014, 6:00 am
Location: Arkansas, USA
Contact:

#203

Post by flavo5000 »

Image
143. The Wandering Jew (Eugène Sue, 1864)
The Wandering Jew, that figure of legend that was cursed by God to walk the earth until the Second Coming for mocking Christ on his way to crucifixion, is a kind of secondary figure here but an important one. His descendants, the Rennepont family, is a group of virtuous and kind folk spread across the globe and who unbeknownst to them, have a massive inheritance coming to them if they are present at a specific manor in Paris on a specific day. Unfortunately for them, the sinister machinations of the Jesuits of the Brothers of Jesus, a branch of the Catholic church, are at play, attempting to steal the money away from the family through a series of truly malevolent and cruel means. Masterminding these evil plans is the seemingly humble and gruff old assistant Rodin, one of the most clever, vile and despicable villains in the history of literature. From the benevolent and unceasingly kind priest Gabriel to the jocular and easy-going layabout Jacques, from the gracious factory owner M. Hardy who has transformed his business into a socialist utopia to the naive and innocent twin girls Rose & Blanche under the protection of the kindly soldier Dagobert, and from the Arthurian and just Indian prince Djalma to the fiercley independent and resplendent Adrienne de Cardoville, the Renneponts are wholly undeserving of the hell they are put through. After the Jesuit's plot is upended via a deus ex machina, Rodin takes complete control, wishing to not only prevent the Renneponts from claiming their fortune but absolutely crushing their will and spirit in the process. And then the cholera comes to Paris...
This massive, sprawling gothic melodrama epic is one of the longest books in this whole list. As such I've been reading it on and off for a couple months, working in other things in between. Despite the flowery prose translation, the random didactic digressions and the endless scenes of superfluous dialogue that could've easily been trimmed (was Sue getting paid by the word here?), at times this was actually quite compelling, and while I certainly wouldn't classify this as strictly horror in the traditional sense (although it does have touches of fantasy particularly in the character of the Wandering Jew himself and his sister), but Rodin truly is one of the most hand-wringing, gnarled, cruel genius villains I've ever come across in literature. He's almost a caricature of what a villain should be, setting into motion subtle maneuvers resulting in death and ruin, without the slightest concern, only with the goal of ultimate power in mind. In fact, the evil he enacts on these poor souls is downright hard to read at times, particularly in the second half of the book. Frankly if Sue could've reigned in some of his more excessive verbal tendencies, this could've been a masterpiece of early pulp fiction. As it is, it's still at times a cracking good yarn when it isn't bogged down in needless exposition and stray philosophical or anti-Catholic rhetoric.
To Read (155)
tr][td] Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation [/td][td] Octavia E. Butler, John Jennings and Damian Duffy [/td][/tr] tr][td] All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By [/td][td] John Farris [/td][/tr]
Title Author
The Passage Justin Cronin
We Have Always Lived in the Castle Shirley Jackson
The Historian Elizabeth Kostova
The Wasp Factory Iain Banks
Hell House Richard Matheson
The Silent Companions Laura Purcell
Her Fearful Symmetry Audrey Niffenegger
Fledgling Octavia E. Butler
Whispers Dean Koontz
The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket Edgar Allan Poe
Carrion Comfort Dan Simmons
Zone One Colson Whitehead
Ring Koji Suzuki
The Changeling Victor LaValle
HEX Thomas Olde Heuvelt
Pandemonium Daryl Gregory
Winter Tide Ruthanna Emrys
Last Days Brian Evenson
Heart-Shaped Box Joe Hill
The Snowman Jo Nesbø
The Case Against Satan Ray Russell
Night Film Marissa Pessl
Drawing Blood Poppy Z. Brite
The Last Werewolf Glen Duncan
Lovecraft Country Matt Ruff
Three Moments of an Explosion: Stories China Miéville
The Walls Around Us Nova Ren Suma
Mr. Shivers Robert Jackson Bennett
Fiend: A Novel Peter Stenson
The Frangipani Hotel: Fiction Violet Kupersmith
Rosemary's Baby Ira Levin
Those Across the River Christpher Buehlman
Let the Right One In John Ajvide Lindqvist
The Collector John Fowles
Queen of the Damned Anne Rice
World War Z Max Brooks
"Young Goodman Brown" Nathaniel Hawthorne
Down a Dark Hall Lois Duncan
Intensity Dean Koontz
The Atrocity Archives Charles Stross
The Cipher Kathe Koja
Bloodchild Octavia E. Butler
The Screwfly Solution James Tiptree Jr.
Elizabeth Ken Greenhall
"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" Joyce Carol Oates
Goosebumps (The Complete Series #1-#62) R.L. Stine
Lunar Park Bret Easton Ellis
Minion L.A. Banks
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories Edited by Ann VanderMeer
The Imago Sequence and Other Stories Laird Barron
The Jumbies Tracey Baptiste
The Werewolf of Paris Guy Endore
Furnace Livia Llewellyn
"Left Foot, Right Foot" Nalo Hopkinson
John Dies at the End David Wong
Grendel John Gardner
Northanger Abbey Jane Austen
Uncle Silas Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Out of Space and Time Clark Ashton Smith
Conjure Wife Fritz Lieber
The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch Phillip K. Dick
Worse Things Waiting Manly Wade Wellman
The Trial Franz Kafka
The Land of Laughs Jonathan Carroll
She H. Rider Haggard
The Painted Bird Jerzy Kosiński
The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner James Hogg
Hawksmoor Peter Ackroyd
Song of Kali Dan Simmons
Caleb Williams William Godwin
A Voyage to Arcturus Dave Lindsay
The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade Herman Melville
The Crystal World J.G. Ballard
The Dark Tower and Other Stories C.S. Lewis
The Green Man Kingsley Amis
The Lurker at the Threshold H.P. Lovecraft, August Derleth
The Black Spider Jeremias Gotthelf
The Wolfen Whitley Strieber
The Arabian Nightmare Robert Irwin
The White Devil John Webster
Something about Eve : a comedy of fig-leaves James Branch Cabell
The Totem David Morrell
Night has a Thousand Eyes Carnell Woolrich
The Compleat Werewolf and Other Stories of Fantasy and Science Fiction Anthony Boucher
Sweetheart, Sweetheart Bernard Taylor
The Dark Country Dennis Etchison
Quatermass and the Pit Nigel Kneale
Who Made Stevie Crye? Michael Bishop
In a Lonely Place Karl Edward Wagner
The Track of the Cat Walter Van Tilburg Clark
The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck Alexander Lang
John Silence, Physician Extraordinary Algernon Blackwood
Sub Rosa: Strange Tales Robert Aikman
Dark Feasts Ramsey Campbell
And the Darkness Falls Edited by Boris Karloff
Deliver Me from Eva Paul Bailey
The Last Bouquet: Some Twilight Tales Marjorie Bowen
The Sleeping and the Dead August Derleth
The Monk Matthew Lewis
The Hound of the Baskervilles Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë
Lost Worlds Clark Ashton Smith
Gormenghast Mervyn Peake
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street Stephen Sondheim
Edge of Running Water William Sloane
Harvest Home Thomas Tryon
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen Alan Garner
Who Fears the Devil? Manly Wade Wellman
The Book of Skulls Robert Silverberg
The Boats of the "Glen Carrig" William Hope Hodgson
The Midwich Cuckoos John Wyndham
The Collected Stories of Elizabeth Bowen Elizabeth Bowen
Tales from the Nightside Charles L. Grant
The Hunger and Other Stories Charles Beaumont
The Cement Garden Ian McEwan
Lost Souls Poppy Z. Brite
Outer Dark Cormac McCarthy
The Manuscript Found in Saragossa Jan Potocki
New Grub Street George Gissing
Peace Gene Wolfe
They Thirst Robert McCammon
The Dark Descent David G. Hartwell
Fantômas Marcel Allain
Prime Evil: New Stories by the Masters of Modern Horror Edited by Douglas E. Winter
Flicker Theodore Roszak
The Devil Rides Out Dennis Wheatley
The Course of the Heart M. John Harrison
Darkness Weaves Karl Edward Wagner
The Nightmare Factory Thomas Ligotti
A Wrinkle in the Skin John Christopher
Skin Kathe Koja
The Trail of Fu Manchu Sax Rohmer
Tales of Horror and the Supernatural Arthur Machen
By Bizarre Hands Joe R. Lansdale
A Scent of New-Mown Hay John Blackburn
The Opener of the Way Robert Bloch
The Playboy Book of Horror and the Supernatural Editors of Playboy
X,Y Michael Blumlein
More Tomorrow & Other Stories Michael Marshall Smith
The Third Ghost Book Edited by Lady Cynthia Asquith
The Off Season Jack Cady
Blood Sport Robert F. Jones
Creep, Shadow! Abraham Merritt
Sleep No More August Derleth
Reprisal Mitchell Smith
Feesters in the Lake Bob Leman
They Return at Evening H. Russell Wakefield
Jumbee and Other Uncanny Tales Henry S. Whitehead
A Haunting Beauty Charles Birkin
Year of the Sex Olympics: Three Television Plays Nigel Kneale
Fancies and Goodnights John Collier
Throat Sprockets Tim Lucas
Read (184)
[
Title Author
"The Lottery" Shirley Jackson
Lord of the Flies William Golding
"The Body" Stephen King
"The Monkey's Paw" W.W. Jacobs
Sandman Neil Gaiman
The Turn of the Screw Henry James
"The Tell-Tale Heart" Edgar Allan Poe
The House Next Door Anne Rivers Siddons
"Shadow Over Innsmouth" H.P. Lovecraft
The October Country Ray Bradbury
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Alvin Schwartz
30 Days of Night Steve Niles, Ben Templesmith
Ghost Story Peter Straub
The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Tales Edgar Allan Poe
Carrie Stephen King
It Stephen King
Something Wicked This Way Comes Ray Bradbury
Books of Blood 1 - 3 Clive Barker
House of Leaves Mark Z. Danielewski
Carmilla Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Uzumaki Junji Ito
"At the Mountains of Madness" H.P. Lovecraft
Haunting of Hill House Shirley Jackson
Frankenstein Mary Shelley
The Shining Stephen King
Dracula Bram Stoker
A Head Full of Ghosts Paul Tremblay
The Ruins Scott Smith
MacBeth William Shakespeare
The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Robert Louis Stevenson
Heart of Darkness Joseph Conrad
Salem's Lot Stephen King
The Man Who Was Thursday G.K. Chesterton
The Lurking Fear and Other Stories H.P. Lovecraft
Deathbird Stories Harlan Ellison
Johnny Got His Gun Dalton Trumbo
The Damnation Game Clive Barker
A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens
The War of the Worlds H.G. Wells
1984 George Orwell
American Psycho Bret Easton Ellis
Pet Sematary Stephen King
Misery Stephen King
The Phantom of the Opera Gaston Leroux
Coraline Neil Gaiman
Horrorstör Grady Hendrix
The Jewel of Seven Stars Bram Stoker
"The Yellow Wallpaper" Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Doctor Faustus Christopher Marlowe
Twice-Told Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne
Red Dragon Thomas Harris
"I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream" Harlan Ellison
Penpal Dathan Auerbach
Widdershins Oliver Onions
The Island of Dr. Moreau H.G. Wells
Goblin Market Christina Rossetti
Burnt Offerings Robert Marasco
The Road Cormac McCarthy
Invasion of the Body Snatchers Jack Finney
The Devil in America Kai Ashante Wilson
"Please Momma" Cheysa Burke
Meddling Kids Edgar Cantero
Wylding Hall Elizabeth Hand
From Hell Alan Moore, Eddie Campbell
The Stranger Albert Camus
Melmoth the Wanderer Charles Maturin
Infidel Pornsak Pichetshote
The Terror Dan Simmons
The Night They Missed the Horror Show Joe R. Lansdale
Anna Dressed in Blood Kendare Blake
Skin Folk Nalo Hopkinson
Interview with the Vampire Anne Rice
Come Closer Sara Gran
The Blind Owl Sadegh Heydayat
The Exorcist William Peter Blatty
City of Glass Paul Auster
The Devil in Silver Victor LaValle
The Fisherman John Langan
The Mask Dean Koontz
Psycho Robert Bloch
Gothic Tales Elizabeth Gaskell
The Queen of Spades Alexander Pushkin
NOS4A2: A Novel Joe Hill
The Beauty Aliya Whiteley
The Fifth Child Doris Lessing
The Six-Gun Tarot R.S. Belcher
Tales of Terror Charles Higham
The Bloody Chamber Angela Carter
The House on the Borderland William Hope Hodgson
The Girl with All the Gifts M.R. Carey
Experimental Film Gemma Files
I Am Legend Richard Matheson
Beloved Toni Morrison
Horror Horn E. F. Benson
Our Lady of Darkness Fritz Lieber
The Killer Inside Me Jim Thompson
Dark Forces Edited by Kirby McCauley
Dread Nation Justina Ireland
Mongrels: A Novel Stephen Graham Jones
The Grip of It Jac Jemc
The King in Yellow Robert W. Chambers
The Woman In Black Susan Hill
The Anubis Gates Tim Powers
Pages from Cold Point Paul Bowles
The Pet Charles L. Grant
Swan Song Robert McCammon
Her Body and Other Parties: Stories Carmen Maria Machado
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer Patrick Süskind
Parasite Eve Hideaki Sena
The Lesser Dead Christopher Buehlman
Fever Dream Samanta Schweblin
Bird Box Josh Malerman
Exquisite Corpse Poppy Z. Brite
Rotters Daniel Kraus
The Croning Laird Barron
The Cellar Richard Laymon
Collected Ghost Stories* M.R. James
Nightshade Derek Marlowe
The Vampire Lestat Anne Rice
The Troop Nick Cutter
The Sound of his Horn Sarban
White is for Witching Helen Oyeyemi
The Haunted Omnibus Edited by Alexander Laing
Through the Woods Emily Carroll
Mythago Wood Robert Holdstock
"All Our Salt-Bottled Hearts" Sonya Taaffe
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories H.P. Lovecraft
The Outsider, and Others H.P. Lovecraft
The Case of Charles Dexter Ward H.P. Lovecraft
The Ballad of Black Tom Victor LaValle
A Nest of Nightmares Lisa Tuttle
Dark Matter Michelle Paver
A Sight for Sore Eyes Ruth Rendell
Strange Toys Patricia Geary
The Best Tales of Hoffmann E. T. A. Hoffmann
Shutter Courtney Alameda
Some of Your Blood Theodore Sturgeon
The Bone Key Sarah Monette
The Elementals Michael McDowell
The Sheep Look Up John Brunner
Obscura Joe Hart
Finishing Touches Thomas Tessler
Alone with the Horrors Ramsey Campbell
"The Willows" Algernon Blackwood
The Revenger's Tragedy Thomas Middleton
Medusa : a Story of Mystery, and Ecstasy & Strange Horror E. H. Visiak
"It's a Good Life" Jerome Bixby
Broken Monsters Lauren Beukes
The Keep F. Paul Wilson
The House of Souls*** Arthur Machen
The Talented Mr. Ripley Patricia Highsmith
The Drowning Girl Caitlin R. Kiernan
Communion Whitley Strieber
The Other Thomas Tryon
Darker Than You Think Jack Williamson
Feed Mira Grant
Falling Angel William Hjortsberg
Things We Lost in the Fire: Stories Mariana Enriquez
Great Tales of Terror and the Supernatural Edited by Phyllis Fraser, Herbert Wise
The Grotesque Patrick McGrath
The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce Ambrose Bierce
The Ceremonies T. E. D. Klein
The Hunger Alma Katsu
Carnacki, the Ghost Finder William Hope Hodgson
The Face That Must Die Ramsey Campbell
Rebecca Daphne Du Maurier
Hammers on Bone Cassandra Khaw
Maplecroft Cherie Priest
The Night Stalker Jeff Rice
The Girl Next Door Jack Ketchum
A Stir of Echoes Richard Matheson
Nine Horrors and a Dream Joseph Payne Brennan
Silence of the Lambs Thomas Harris
The Bad Seed William March
Frankenstein in Baghdad Ahmed Saadawi
Shadowland Peter Straub
The Second Century of Creepy Stories Sir Hugh Walpole
The Good House Tananarive Due
The Handmaid's Tale Margaret Atwood
House of Flesh Bruno Fischer
The Red Tree Caitlin R. Kiernan
The House with a Clock in its Walls John Bellairs
Murgunstrumm and Others Hugh B. Cave
Spirit Hunters Ellen Oh
The Wandering Jew Eugène Sue
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flavo5000
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#204

Post by flavo5000 »

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144. Whispers (Dean Koontz, 1980)
Hilary Thomas is a Hollywood screenwriter, and of course, because it's a Dean Koontz book, she's also blonde and beautiful. Her life is thrown into a tailspin when she is assaulted in her home by who she believes is a man named Bruno Frye, a businessman who runs a vineyard hundreds of miles away that she had briefly met on a couple of occasions. The problem is that Bruno Frye had an airtight alibi at the time, and the grizzled and jaded cop who questions her doesn't believe her. The other problem is that Bruno keeps coming back until eventually she manages to kill him. But even that doesn't stop him, the voices in his head whispering to him, urging him on to destroy Hilary Thomas.
Man, Koontz just loves to put beautiful women in peril at the hands of unstoppable monsters, doesn't he? If you're just now joining me, you should know that I am not what you'd call the biggest Dean Koontz fan. I find his plotting slapdash at times, his stories randomly overly sentimental and his dialogue extremely cheesy and contrived. Guess what? All that holds true with Whispers. All the dialogue interplay between young handsome cop Lieutenant Clemenza and Hilary Thomas are painfully cheesy and feel interminable. It feels like Koontz trying to channel a screwball comedy and ending up with cheap pap from a Harlequin romance instead. And speaking of, the sex scenes are graphic and hilarious in all the wrong ways. One in particular with Bruno Frye raping a woman was so poorly written that despite the horror occurring I was cackling out loud at how badly it was written. Oh and also this thing was way too freaking long. One thing that could've been cut down or even totally cut out is another Koontz trademark, the old man friend subplot. In this case, it's an older lawyer tasked with managing the Frye estate after Bruno's "death" who enters the picture to help Hilary and Clemenza investigate what the hell is going on. It also takes WAY too long for the characters to even start considering the preposterous situation Koontz has devised here which just served to exasperate me. If you haven't guessed by now, I didn't love this book, although I will say it was marginally better than The Mask, the previous Koontz book I covered here.
To Read (154)
tr][td] Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation [/td][td] Octavia E. Butler, John Jennings and Damian Duffy [/td][/tr] tr][td] All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By [/td][td] John Farris [/td][/tr]
Title Author
The Passage Justin Cronin
We Have Always Lived in the Castle Shirley Jackson
The Historian Elizabeth Kostova
The Wasp Factory Iain Banks
Hell House Richard Matheson
The Silent Companions Laura Purcell
Her Fearful Symmetry Audrey Niffenegger
Fledgling Octavia E. Butler
The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket Edgar Allan Poe
Carrion Comfort Dan Simmons
Zone One Colson Whitehead
Ring Koji Suzuki
The Changeling Victor LaValle
HEX Thomas Olde Heuvelt
Pandemonium Daryl Gregory
Winter Tide Ruthanna Emrys
Last Days Brian Evenson
Heart-Shaped Box Joe Hill
The Snowman Jo Nesbø
The Case Against Satan Ray Russell
Night Film Marissa Pessl
Drawing Blood Poppy Z. Brite
The Last Werewolf Glen Duncan
Lovecraft Country Matt Ruff
Three Moments of an Explosion: Stories China Miéville
The Walls Around Us Nova Ren Suma
Mr. Shivers Robert Jackson Bennett
Fiend: A Novel Peter Stenson
The Frangipani Hotel: Fiction Violet Kupersmith
Rosemary's Baby Ira Levin
Those Across the River Christpher Buehlman
Let the Right One In John Ajvide Lindqvist
The Collector John Fowles
Queen of the Damned Anne Rice
World War Z Max Brooks
"Young Goodman Brown" Nathaniel Hawthorne
Down a Dark Hall Lois Duncan
Intensity Dean Koontz
The Atrocity Archives Charles Stross
The Cipher Kathe Koja
Bloodchild Octavia E. Butler
The Screwfly Solution James Tiptree Jr.
Elizabeth Ken Greenhall
"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" Joyce Carol Oates
Goosebumps (The Complete Series #1-#62) R.L. Stine
Lunar Park Bret Easton Ellis
Minion L.A. Banks
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories Edited by Ann VanderMeer
The Imago Sequence and Other Stories Laird Barron
The Jumbies Tracey Baptiste
The Werewolf of Paris Guy Endore
Furnace Livia Llewellyn
"Left Foot, Right Foot" Nalo Hopkinson
John Dies at the End David Wong
Grendel John Gardner
Northanger Abbey Jane Austen
Uncle Silas Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Out of Space and Time Clark Ashton Smith
Conjure Wife Fritz Lieber
The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch Phillip K. Dick
Worse Things Waiting Manly Wade Wellman
The Trial Franz Kafka
The Land of Laughs Jonathan Carroll
She H. Rider Haggard
The Painted Bird Jerzy Kosiński
The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner James Hogg
Hawksmoor Peter Ackroyd
Song of Kali Dan Simmons
Caleb Williams William Godwin
A Voyage to Arcturus Dave Lindsay
The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade Herman Melville
The Crystal World J.G. Ballard
The Dark Tower and Other Stories C.S. Lewis
The Green Man Kingsley Amis
The Lurker at the Threshold H.P. Lovecraft, August Derleth
The Black Spider Jeremias Gotthelf
The Wolfen Whitley Strieber
The Arabian Nightmare Robert Irwin
The White Devil John Webster
Something about Eve : a comedy of fig-leaves James Branch Cabell
The Totem David Morrell
Night has a Thousand Eyes Carnell Woolrich
The Compleat Werewolf and Other Stories of Fantasy and Science Fiction Anthony Boucher
Sweetheart, Sweetheart Bernard Taylor
The Dark Country Dennis Etchison
Quatermass and the Pit Nigel Kneale
Who Made Stevie Crye? Michael Bishop
In a Lonely Place Karl Edward Wagner
The Track of the Cat Walter Van Tilburg Clark
The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck Alexander Lang
John Silence, Physician Extraordinary Algernon Blackwood
Sub Rosa: Strange Tales Robert Aikman
Dark Feasts Ramsey Campbell
And the Darkness Falls Edited by Boris Karloff
Deliver Me from Eva Paul Bailey
The Last Bouquet: Some Twilight Tales Marjorie Bowen
The Sleeping and the Dead August Derleth
The Monk Matthew Lewis
The Hound of the Baskervilles Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë
Lost Worlds Clark Ashton Smith
Gormenghast Mervyn Peake
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street Stephen Sondheim
Edge of Running Water William Sloane
Harvest Home Thomas Tryon
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen Alan Garner
Who Fears the Devil? Manly Wade Wellman
The Book of Skulls Robert Silverberg
The Boats of the "Glen Carrig" William Hope Hodgson
The Midwich Cuckoos John Wyndham
The Collected Stories of Elizabeth Bowen Elizabeth Bowen
Tales from the Nightside Charles L. Grant
The Hunger and Other Stories Charles Beaumont
The Cement Garden Ian McEwan
Lost Souls Poppy Z. Brite
Outer Dark Cormac McCarthy
The Manuscript Found in Saragossa Jan Potocki
New Grub Street George Gissing
Peace Gene Wolfe
They Thirst Robert McCammon
The Dark Descent David G. Hartwell
Fantômas Marcel Allain
Prime Evil: New Stories by the Masters of Modern Horror Edited by Douglas E. Winter
Flicker Theodore Roszak
The Devil Rides Out Dennis Wheatley
The Course of the Heart M. John Harrison
Darkness Weaves Karl Edward Wagner
The Nightmare Factory Thomas Ligotti
A Wrinkle in the Skin John Christopher
Skin Kathe Koja
The Trail of Fu Manchu Sax Rohmer
Tales of Horror and the Supernatural Arthur Machen
By Bizarre Hands Joe R. Lansdale
A Scent of New-Mown Hay John Blackburn
The Opener of the Way Robert Bloch
The Playboy Book of Horror and the Supernatural Editors of Playboy
X,Y Michael Blumlein
More Tomorrow & Other Stories Michael Marshall Smith
The Third Ghost Book Edited by Lady Cynthia Asquith
The Off Season Jack Cady
Blood Sport Robert F. Jones
Creep, Shadow! Abraham Merritt
Sleep No More August Derleth
Reprisal Mitchell Smith
Feesters in the Lake Bob Leman
They Return at Evening H. Russell Wakefield
Jumbee and Other Uncanny Tales Henry S. Whitehead
A Haunting Beauty Charles Birkin
Year of the Sex Olympics: Three Television Plays Nigel Kneale
Fancies and Goodnights John Collier
Throat Sprockets Tim Lucas
Read (185)
Title Author
"The Lottery" Shirley Jackson
Lord of the Flies William Golding
"The Body" Stephen King
"The Monkey's Paw" W.W. Jacobs
Sandman Neil Gaiman
The Turn of the Screw Henry James
"The Tell-Tale Heart" Edgar Allan Poe
The House Next Door Anne Rivers Siddons
"Shadow Over Innsmouth" H.P. Lovecraft
The October Country Ray Bradbury
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Alvin Schwartz
30 Days of Night Steve Niles, Ben Templesmith
Ghost Story Peter Straub
The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Tales Edgar Allan Poe
Carrie Stephen King
It Stephen King
Something Wicked This Way Comes Ray Bradbury
Books of Blood 1 - 3 Clive Barker
House of Leaves Mark Z. Danielewski
Carmilla Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Uzumaki Junji Ito
"At the Mountains of Madness" H.P. Lovecraft
Haunting of Hill House Shirley Jackson
Frankenstein Mary Shelley
The Shining Stephen King
Dracula Bram Stoker
A Head Full of Ghosts Paul Tremblay
The Ruins Scott Smith
MacBeth William Shakespeare
The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Robert Louis Stevenson
Heart of Darkness Joseph Conrad
Salem's Lot Stephen King
The Man Who Was Thursday G.K. Chesterton
The Lurking Fear and Other Stories H.P. Lovecraft
Deathbird Stories Harlan Ellison
Johnny Got His Gun Dalton Trumbo
The Damnation Game Clive Barker
A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens
The War of the Worlds H.G. Wells
1984 George Orwell
American Psycho Bret Easton Ellis
Pet Sematary Stephen King
Misery Stephen King
The Phantom of the Opera Gaston Leroux
Coraline Neil Gaiman
Horrorstör Grady Hendrix
The Jewel of Seven Stars Bram Stoker
"The Yellow Wallpaper" Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Doctor Faustus Christopher Marlowe
Twice-Told Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne
Red Dragon Thomas Harris
"I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream" Harlan Ellison
Penpal Dathan Auerbach
Widdershins Oliver Onions
The Island of Dr. Moreau H.G. Wells
Goblin Market Christina Rossetti
Burnt Offerings Robert Marasco
The Road Cormac McCarthy
Invasion of the Body Snatchers Jack Finney
The Devil in America Kai Ashante Wilson
"Please Momma" Cheysa Burke
Meddling Kids Edgar Cantero
Wylding Hall Elizabeth Hand
From Hell Alan Moore, Eddie Campbell
The Stranger Albert Camus
Melmoth the Wanderer Charles Maturin
Infidel Pornsak Pichetshote
The Terror Dan Simmons
The Night They Missed the Horror Show Joe R. Lansdale
Anna Dressed in Blood Kendare Blake
Skin Folk Nalo Hopkinson
Interview with the Vampire Anne Rice
Come Closer Sara Gran
The Blind Owl Sadegh Heydayat
The Exorcist William Peter Blatty
City of Glass Paul Auster
The Devil in Silver Victor LaValle
The Fisherman John Langan
The Mask Dean Koontz
Psycho Robert Bloch
Gothic Tales Elizabeth Gaskell
The Queen of Spades Alexander Pushkin
NOS4A2: A Novel Joe Hill
The Beauty Aliya Whiteley
The Fifth Child Doris Lessing
The Six-Gun Tarot R.S. Belcher
Tales of Terror Charles Higham
The Bloody Chamber Angela Carter
The House on the Borderland William Hope Hodgson
The Girl with All the Gifts M.R. Carey
Experimental Film Gemma Files
I Am Legend Richard Matheson
Beloved Toni Morrison
Horror Horn E. F. Benson
Our Lady of Darkness Fritz Lieber
The Killer Inside Me Jim Thompson
Dark Forces Edited by Kirby McCauley
Dread Nation Justina Ireland
Mongrels: A Novel Stephen Graham Jones
The Grip of It Jac Jemc
The King in Yellow Robert W. Chambers
The Woman In Black Susan Hill
The Anubis Gates Tim Powers
Pages from Cold Point Paul Bowles
The Pet Charles L. Grant
Swan Song Robert McCammon
Her Body and Other Parties: Stories Carmen Maria Machado
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer Patrick Süskind
Parasite Eve Hideaki Sena
The Lesser Dead Christopher Buehlman
Fever Dream Samanta Schweblin
Bird Box Josh Malerman
Exquisite Corpse Poppy Z. Brite
Rotters Daniel Kraus
The Croning Laird Barron
The Cellar Richard Laymon
Collected Ghost Stories* M.R. James
Nightshade Derek Marlowe
The Vampire Lestat Anne Rice
The Troop Nick Cutter
The Sound of his Horn Sarban
White is for Witching Helen Oyeyemi
The Haunted Omnibus Edited by Alexander Laing
Through the Woods Emily Carroll
Mythago Wood Robert Holdstock
"All Our Salt-Bottled Hearts" Sonya Taaffe
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories H.P. Lovecraft
The Outsider, and Others H.P. Lovecraft
The Case of Charles Dexter Ward H.P. Lovecraft
The Ballad of Black Tom Victor LaValle
A Nest of Nightmares Lisa Tuttle
Dark Matter Michelle Paver
A Sight for Sore Eyes Ruth Rendell
Strange Toys Patricia Geary
The Best Tales of Hoffmann E. T. A. Hoffmann
Shutter Courtney Alameda
Some of Your Blood Theodore Sturgeon
The Bone Key Sarah Monette
The Elementals Michael McDowell
The Sheep Look Up John Brunner
Obscura Joe Hart
Finishing Touches Thomas Tessler
Alone with the Horrors Ramsey Campbell
"The Willows" Algernon Blackwood
The Revenger's Tragedy Thomas Middleton
Medusa : a Story of Mystery, and Ecstasy & Strange Horror E. H. Visiak
"It's a Good Life" Jerome Bixby
Broken Monsters Lauren Beukes
The Keep F. Paul Wilson
The House of Souls*** Arthur Machen
The Talented Mr. Ripley Patricia Highsmith
The Drowning Girl Caitlin R. Kiernan
Communion Whitley Strieber
The Other Thomas Tryon
Darker Than You Think Jack Williamson
Feed Mira Grant
Falling Angel William Hjortsberg
Things We Lost in the Fire: Stories Mariana Enriquez
Great Tales of Terror and the Supernatural Edited by Phyllis Fraser, Herbert Wise
The Grotesque Patrick McGrath
The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce Ambrose Bierce
The Ceremonies T. E. D. Klein
The Hunger Alma Katsu
Carnacki, the Ghost Finder William Hope Hodgson
The Face That Must Die Ramsey Campbell
Rebecca Daphne Du Maurier
Hammers on Bone Cassandra Khaw
Maplecroft Cherie Priest
The Night Stalker Jeff Rice
The Girl Next Door Jack Ketchum
A Stir of Echoes Richard Matheson
Nine Horrors and a Dream Joseph Payne Brennan
Silence of the Lambs Thomas Harris
The Bad Seed William March
Frankenstein in Baghdad Ahmed Saadawi
Shadowland Peter Straub
The Second Century of Creepy Stories Sir Hugh Walpole
The Good House Tananarive Due
The Handmaid's Tale Margaret Atwood
House of Flesh Bruno Fischer
The Red Tree Caitlin R. Kiernan
The House with a Clock in its Walls John Bellairs
Murgunstrumm and Others Hugh B. Cave
Spirit Hunters Ellen Oh
The Wandering Jew Eugène Sue
Whispers Dean Koontz
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Leopardi
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#205

Post by Leopardi »

flavo5000 wrote: February 22nd, 2022, 11:10 pm Image
104. Medusa (E. H. Visiak, 1929)
We follow Will, a young lad who meets all manner of tragic circumstances before meeting up with the shady fellow Obadiah Moon and joining the crew of a sea-faring vessel where they tangle with pirates, wax philosophical on the essence of sea travel, see false ghosts and ultimately are confronted by a strange monstrous something that threatens to destroy them all.
So Karl Edward Wagner famously described this notoriously difficult to track down book (thanks internet!) "Treasure Island on acid", and while I certainly see the Treasure Island similarities in its structure, I don't really see it as being very drug-influenced. The plot as it were is fairly meandering with little to no actual horror elements occurring until toward the very end at which point it comes across as too little, too late. Also the characters were fairly one-dimensional which may very well have been intentional to have them play into certain archetypes, but it made it difficult to really care about any of them. To compound the problems I had with this, the writing style is excruciating to read with Visiak using a much older dialect both in narrative and dialogue which might add to the authenticity of the seafaring tone but makes for an archaic and painful experience in reading it. It's a shame because there are some interesting ideas hiding in here but it feels like Visiak wrote this mainly for himself with a certain amount of smug self-satisfaction.
Man, I really like the sound of this one. It's too bad you didn't enjoy it, but if someone were to publish it I might give it a try all the same, I don't think I'd be able to resist. I wonder if his earlier novel The Haunted Island is any better, that one's calling to me as well. Has anyone here read it?
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#206

Post by Leopardi »

flavo5000 wrote: March 2nd, 2022, 4:54 pm Image
107. The Keep (F. Paul Wilson, 1981)
The Keep, an elaborated constructed guard post/castle in the remote mountains of Romania is ages old and kept in pristine condition via mysterious sources. That is, until it is occupied by Nazi forces who awaken a long dormant threat that begins killing their men. After radioing for a request for transfer, high command sends an SS unit to deal with the situation which only exacerbates the problem. They ultimately bring in a debilitated old man and his buxom daughter who happen to be experts in Romanian folklore to discern how to stop the unseen force from its string of murders. Meanwhile a mysterious red-headed stranger arrives in the nearby town, suspiciously knowing much more about the keep than he should. All these threads come together and climax in a fierce battle of good vs. evil and for the soul of all mankind.
I had previously seen the film version of The Keep by well-regarded director Michael Mann and found it to be kind of a trainwreck of a movie. Of course, much of that isn't Mann's fault. Between having his effects supervisor die on him with a large chunk of effects not finished to the studio cutting his 4.5 hour (!) cut down to a little over 90 minutes making the narrative borderline incomprehensible, it's not hard to understand why Mann has tried to eradicate the film's existence from the public consciousness. So how does the book compare? Frankly it's like night and day in places. While much of the film does generally follow the plot of the book, the content and character development were gutted. The book certainly focuses on building out the characters more. Much more central to the first half of the book as compared to the movie is the power struggle between more traditional military man Captain Woermann and depraved SS Major Kaempffer. Wilson does a pretty good job of actually building some sympathy for a Nazi in Woermann who feels that the direction Germany is heading in is a cowardly and undignified path but is also beholder to his own honor and dedication to the military life for which he's dedicated his whole life. Kaempffer on the other hand embodies all the worst traits of Nazis, his hatred and mistreatment of women, jews and pretty much everyone else around him, his cowardly inner thoughts and behavior at times, his insecurities. The book also provides much more back story on the folklore of the region with a much less telegraphed turn in the plot that what the film did in terms of the true nature of Molissar. Much like the film, the final act of the book switches gears from a more traditional horror story (people getting killed by a monster in the dark) to a more mystical ages old action fantasy at times that reminded me of Highlander (but with zombies). While the movie is deeply flawed, the book isn't perfect either. It's depiction of and treatment of Magda, the folklore expert's daughter, is borderline sexist at times. Wilson seems to relish in lurid descriptions of her physique and while giving her inner voice a desire to break out from the traditional bonds expected of women of the time as a wife and mother, he then gives her a pretty cliche love story arc that feels a little on the hackneyed side. The book also feels a little overly drawn out in places in terms of its exposition which I think could've been handled more elegantly. Overall though, it's still a pretty solid read and definitely better than the film version.
I was put off of reading this book by the film, but I'm happy to say I saw it long enough ago that it's a distant memory so maybe I'll give this one a try, since from the sound of your review I think I'd enjoy it. I'll keep an eye out for it - thanks!
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#207

Post by Leopardi »

flavo5000 wrote: March 6th, 2022, 9:16 pm Image
109. The Great God Pan & Other Weird Tales (Arthur Machen, 1890-1904)
Arthur Machen is considered one of the great forefathers of the weird tale. A noted influence on many of the great horror authors of the last century from H.P. Lovecraft to Stephen King. Machen's stories are steeped in mysticism and the occult filtered through the lens of an austere English sensibility. Much of Machen's story content was fueled by a deep fascination with spiritualism as a practice, and he was known to research various Hermetic practices and associated with major figures of the occult and spiritualism like Aleister Crowley and A.E. Waite.
This audiobook collection invludes the entirety of the 1906 edition of The House of Souls as well as a handful of additional stories from Machen's previous collection Three Imposters. The lead story here is of course Machen's novella “The Great God Pan”, an odd, disjointed tale of mad science, sexual perversity (mostly implied) and mysterious murder. While I can understand the influence of it, frankly I found the actual reading of it a bit tedious and confusing in places with a start-stop narrative that first begins with a sinister lobotomy before seemingly randomly jumping years forward to a completely different location with little to no explanation as to why. While it does eventually reveal the connection, something about this one just rubbed me the wrong way. The next story “The White People” is one I had read before and found interesting but flawed. Upon revisiting it in audiobook form, I think this format actually works better for this particular story given the way it’s written as a strange and magical stream of conscious tale. I still found the framing story that “The Green Book” is nestled inside overly tedious though. “The Inmost Light” is also a solid story but also one that could’ve done with some tightening of its narrative. The selections from Three Imposters were all of similar quality and made for engaging stories that while obviously from a more complete episodic framing story function as fascinating weird tales in their own way. “The Shining Pyramid”, another story not originally from The House of Souls, having originally been serialized in occultist A.E. Waite’s The Unknown World magazine, begins in classic folk horror fashion with mysterious stones organizing themselves in indecipherable patterns and is also pretty engaging but also suffers from Machen’s more long-winded tendencies. The collection is closed out with “Fragments of Life”, a non-supernatural tale of wistful nostalgia that essentially recounts a man going through a midlife crisis. This one is the longest in the collection and unfortunately the most uninteresting as well. Though it does bear stating that the language is certainly still very much in Machen’s style with a kind of mystical air to it that still helps it fit in with the rest of the collection despite the thematic differences.
Overall, while I can’t say that Machen’s overly belabored writing style is my favorite, I can certainly see the raw imagination and influence at play here that would make Machen so revered by future authors of weird fiction.
I've actually never read anything by Machen before (!) but couldn't resist picking up a 1st edition of his The House of Souls because of the spiffy cover (maybe I mentioned that on the forum at some point?). Anyway, I still haven't picked up The Great God Pan but it's been high on my list of titles to find because of its reputation. Just waiting for a nice-looking copy, I guess.
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#208

Post by Leopardi »

flavo5000 wrote: March 18th, 2022, 7:51 pm Image
113. The Other (Thomas Tryon, 1971)
13-year-old twins Holland and Niles couldn't be more different. Niles is an angel, easy and light-hearted with a natural kindness that draws others to him. Holland, on the other hand, you could say was born under a bad sign. He continuously says and does naughty things ill-befitted a healthy young lad. Some of his behaviors even border on cruel. We get to know not only these two boys but their family as well, growing up as descendants of Russian immigrants in a small Connecticut town in the '30s. After a couple of mysterious deaths take place, it becomes clear that not all may be as they seem with Holland and Niles is powerless to help.
The Other is a hard one to write a synopsis for. Part Our Town, part something much darker, this is a very well-written and engaging novel from former actor Tryon that deals in tricks and illusion, challenging what is and isn't real with magic tricks a reoccurring motif. The Other is responsible, along with Rosemary's Baby and The Exorcist, for igniting the massive horror fiction boom of the '70s and '80s and it's easy to see why. This book has powerful imagery and is one that probably bears reading more than one to really get a feel for how ingenious it really is. Despite having seen the film adaptation (scripted by Tryon himself), this novel still put me under its spell and managed to surprise me regardless. It's difficult to talk about this one without spoilers, so just go read it. I can almost guarantee you'll love it.
This one wasn't on my radar before but it most certainly is now - thanks!
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#209

Post by flavo5000 »

Leopardi wrote: July 10th, 2022, 3:01 am
flavo5000 wrote: March 6th, 2022, 9:16 pm 109. The Great God Pan & Other Weird Tales (Arthur Machen, 1890-1904)
Arthur Machen is considered one of the great forefathers of the weird tale. A noted influence on many of the great horror authors of the last century from H.P. Lovecraft to Stephen King. Machen's stories are steeped in mysticism and the occult filtered through the lens of an austere English sensibility. Much of Machen's story content was fueled by a deep fascination with spiritualism as a practice, and he was known to research various Hermetic practices and associated with major figures of the occult and spiritualism like Aleister Crowley and A.E. Waite.
This audiobook collection invludes the entirety of the 1906 edition of The House of Souls as well as a handful of additional stories from Machen's previous collection Three Imposters. The lead story here is of course Machen's novella “The Great God Pan”, an odd, disjointed tale of mad science, sexual perversity (mostly implied) and mysterious murder. While I can understand the influence of it, frankly I found the actual reading of it a bit tedious and confusing in places with a start-stop narrative that first begins with a sinister lobotomy before seemingly randomly jumping years forward to a completely different location with little to no explanation as to why. While it does eventually reveal the connection, something about this one just rubbed me the wrong way. The next story “The White People” is one I had read before and found interesting but flawed. Upon revisiting it in audiobook form, I think this format actually works better for this particular story given the way it’s written as a strange and magical stream of conscious tale. I still found the framing story that “The Green Book” is nestled inside overly tedious though. “The Inmost Light” is also a solid story but also one that could’ve done with some tightening of its narrative. The selections from Three Imposters were all of similar quality and made for engaging stories that while obviously from a more complete episodic framing story function as fascinating weird tales in their own way. “The Shining Pyramid”, another story not originally from The House of Souls, having originally been serialized in occultist A.E. Waite’s The Unknown World magazine, begins in classic folk horror fashion with mysterious stones organizing themselves in indecipherable patterns and is also pretty engaging but also suffers from Machen’s more long-winded tendencies. The collection is closed out with “Fragments of Life”, a non-supernatural tale of wistful nostalgia that essentially recounts a man going through a midlife crisis. This one is the longest in the collection and unfortunately the most uninteresting as well. Though it does bear stating that the language is certainly still very much in Machen’s style with a kind of mystical air to it that still helps it fit in with the rest of the collection despite the thematic differences.
Overall, while I can’t say that Machen’s overly belabored writing style is my favorite, I can certainly see the raw imagination and influence at play here that would make Machen so revered by future authors of weird fiction.
I've actually never read anything by Machen before (!) but couldn't resist picking up a 1st edition of his The House of Souls because of the spiffy cover (maybe I mentioned that on the forum at some point?). Anyway, I still haven't picked up The Great God Pan but it's been high on my list of titles to find because of its reputation. Just waiting for a nice-looking copy, I guess.
If you have House of Souls, then you have Great God Pan. :D It's a Machen story collection that includes Pan, The White People, Inmost Light and Fragments of Life (some versions include several stories from Three Imposters too, but not sure whether the version you have does).
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Leopardi
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#210

Post by Leopardi »

flavo5000 wrote: July 10th, 2022, 12:43 pm
Leopardi wrote: July 10th, 2022, 3:01 am
flavo5000 wrote: March 6th, 2022, 9:16 pm 109. The Great God Pan & Other Weird Tales (Arthur Machen, 1890-1904)
Arthur Machen is considered one of the great forefathers of the weird tale. A noted influence on many of the great horror authors of the last century from H.P. Lovecraft to Stephen King. Machen's stories are steeped in mysticism and the occult filtered through the lens of an austere English sensibility. Much of Machen's story content was fueled by a deep fascination with spiritualism as a practice, and he was known to research various Hermetic practices and associated with major figures of the occult and spiritualism like Aleister Crowley and A.E. Waite.
This audiobook collection invludes the entirety of the 1906 edition of The House of Souls as well as a handful of additional stories from Machen's previous collection Three Imposters. The lead story here is of course Machen's novella “The Great God Pan”, an odd, disjointed tale of mad science, sexual perversity (mostly implied) and mysterious murder. While I can understand the influence of it, frankly I found the actual reading of it a bit tedious and confusing in places with a start-stop narrative that first begins with a sinister lobotomy before seemingly randomly jumping years forward to a completely different location with little to no explanation as to why. While it does eventually reveal the connection, something about this one just rubbed me the wrong way. The next story “The White People” is one I had read before and found interesting but flawed. Upon revisiting it in audiobook form, I think this format actually works better for this particular story given the way it’s written as a strange and magical stream of conscious tale. I still found the framing story that “The Green Book” is nestled inside overly tedious though. “The Inmost Light” is also a solid story but also one that could’ve done with some tightening of its narrative. The selections from Three Imposters were all of similar quality and made for engaging stories that while obviously from a more complete episodic framing story function as fascinating weird tales in their own way. “The Shining Pyramid”, another story not originally from The House of Souls, having originally been serialized in occultist A.E. Waite’s The Unknown World magazine, begins in classic folk horror fashion with mysterious stones organizing themselves in indecipherable patterns and is also pretty engaging but also suffers from Machen’s more long-winded tendencies. The collection is closed out with “Fragments of Life”, a non-supernatural tale of wistful nostalgia that essentially recounts a man going through a midlife crisis. This one is the longest in the collection and unfortunately the most uninteresting as well. Though it does bear stating that the language is certainly still very much in Machen’s style with a kind of mystical air to it that still helps it fit in with the rest of the collection despite the thematic differences.
Overall, while I can’t say that Machen’s overly belabored writing style is my favorite, I can certainly see the raw imagination and influence at play here that would make Machen so revered by future authors of weird fiction.
I've actually never read anything by Machen before (!) but couldn't resist picking up a 1st edition of his The House of Souls because of the spiffy cover (maybe I mentioned that on the forum at some point?). Anyway, I still haven't picked up The Great God Pan but it's been high on my list of titles to find because of its reputation. Just waiting for a nice-looking copy, I guess.
If you have House of Souls, then you have Great God Pan. :D It's a Machen story collection that includes Pan, The White People, Inmost Light and Fragments of Life (some versions include several stories from Three Imposters too, but not sure whether the version you have does).
Oh, is that right? I hadn't realized that! You can see how little I actually know about Machen's work. Ah well, that's one I can cross off my list, I guess!
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#211

Post by flavo5000 »

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145. Kindred: A Graphic Novel (Octavia Butler, Damian Duffy, John Jennings, 2017)
The story of Octavia Butler's Kindred is the harrowing account of a black woman in present day who is suddenly pulled back in time to the Antebellum south days of slavery, somehow thrust into this situation whenever a white ancestor of hers finds himself in live-threatening peril. She can only return to the present when she perceives herself to be in mortal danger. Thus begins a grim account of a modern woman, along with her white husband, who is forced to confront the horrors of the past and try to make an impact on her own lineage.
I haven't read the original novel, so I don't have a point of comparison here (although the initial situation does sound similar to the recent film Antebellum), but this graphic novel adaptation both brings the strengths and the weaknesses of the medium to bare. The weathered illustrations of Jennings brings to life the atrocities of slavery in painful visuals that at times creates quite effective moments. At times the illustrations feel a little overly static though as well. Duffy's adaptation is quite good though, capturing what I think is probably the meat of the story without compromising the emotion resonance of the characters. Still, it does feel a little rushed in a few places and this feels like the kind of book that captures a great deal of the main character's internal thoughts which we definitely don't get very much of here. Overall though this is a pretty potent story that's worth checking out, and this comic adaptation does justice to the source.
To Read (153)
tr][td] All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By [/td][td] John Farris [/td][/tr]
Title Author
The Passage Justin Cronin
We Have Always Lived in the Castle Shirley Jackson
The Historian Elizabeth Kostova
The Wasp Factory Iain Banks
Hell House Richard Matheson
The Silent Companions Laura Purcell
Her Fearful Symmetry Audrey Niffenegger
Fledgling Octavia E. Butler
The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket Edgar Allan Poe
Carrion Comfort Dan Simmons
Zone One Colson Whitehead
Ring Koji Suzuki
The Changeling Victor LaValle
HEX Thomas Olde Heuvelt
Pandemonium Daryl Gregory
Winter Tide Ruthanna Emrys
Last Days Brian Evenson
Heart-Shaped Box Joe Hill
The Snowman Jo Nesbø
The Case Against Satan Ray Russell
Night Film Marissa Pessl
Drawing Blood Poppy Z. Brite
The Last Werewolf Glen Duncan
Lovecraft Country Matt Ruff
Three Moments of an Explosion: Stories China Miéville
The Walls Around Us Nova Ren Suma
Mr. Shivers Robert Jackson Bennett
Fiend: A Novel Peter Stenson
The Frangipani Hotel: Fiction Violet Kupersmith
Rosemary's Baby Ira Levin
Those Across the River Christpher Buehlman
Let the Right One In John Ajvide Lindqvist
The Collector John Fowles
Queen of the Damned Anne Rice
World War Z Max Brooks
"Young Goodman Brown" Nathaniel Hawthorne
Down a Dark Hall Lois Duncan
Intensity Dean Koontz
The Atrocity Archives Charles Stross
The Cipher Kathe Koja
Bloodchild Octavia E. Butler
The Screwfly Solution James Tiptree Jr.
Elizabeth Ken Greenhall
"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" Joyce Carol Oates
Goosebumps (The Complete Series #1-#62) R.L. Stine
Lunar Park Bret Easton Ellis
Minion L.A. Banks
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories Edited by Ann VanderMeer
The Imago Sequence and Other Stories Laird Barron
The Jumbies Tracey Baptiste
The Werewolf of Paris Guy Endore
Furnace Livia Llewellyn
"Left Foot, Right Foot" Nalo Hopkinson
John Dies at the End David Wong
Grendel John Gardner
Northanger Abbey Jane Austen
Uncle Silas Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Out of Space and Time Clark Ashton Smith
Conjure Wife Fritz Lieber
The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch Phillip K. Dick
Worse Things Waiting Manly Wade Wellman
The Trial Franz Kafka
The Land of Laughs Jonathan Carroll
She H. Rider Haggard
The Painted Bird Jerzy Kosiński
The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner James Hogg
Hawksmoor Peter Ackroyd
Song of Kali Dan Simmons
Caleb Williams William Godwin
A Voyage to Arcturus Dave Lindsay
The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade Herman Melville
The Crystal World J.G. Ballard
The Dark Tower and Other Stories C.S. Lewis
The Green Man Kingsley Amis
The Lurker at the Threshold H.P. Lovecraft, August Derleth
The Black Spider Jeremias Gotthelf
The Wolfen Whitley Strieber
The Arabian Nightmare Robert Irwin
The White Devil John Webster
Something about Eve : a comedy of fig-leaves James Branch Cabell
The Totem David Morrell
Night has a Thousand Eyes Carnell Woolrich
The Compleat Werewolf and Other Stories of Fantasy and Science Fiction Anthony Boucher
Sweetheart, Sweetheart Bernard Taylor
The Dark Country Dennis Etchison
Quatermass and the Pit Nigel Kneale
Who Made Stevie Crye? Michael Bishop
In a Lonely Place Karl Edward Wagner
The Track of the Cat Walter Van Tilburg Clark
The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck Alexander Lang
John Silence, Physician Extraordinary Algernon Blackwood
Sub Rosa: Strange Tales Robert Aikman
Dark Feasts Ramsey Campbell
And the Darkness Falls Edited by Boris Karloff
Deliver Me from Eva Paul Bailey
The Last Bouquet: Some Twilight Tales Marjorie Bowen
The Sleeping and the Dead August Derleth
The Monk Matthew Lewis
The Hound of the Baskervilles Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë
Lost Worlds Clark Ashton Smith
Gormenghast Mervyn Peake
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street Stephen Sondheim
Edge of Running Water William Sloane
Harvest Home Thomas Tryon
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen Alan Garner
Who Fears the Devil? Manly Wade Wellman
The Book of Skulls Robert Silverberg
The Boats of the "Glen Carrig" William Hope Hodgson
The Midwich Cuckoos John Wyndham
The Collected Stories of Elizabeth Bowen Elizabeth Bowen
Tales from the Nightside Charles L. Grant
The Hunger and Other Stories Charles Beaumont
The Cement Garden Ian McEwan
Lost Souls Poppy Z. Brite
Outer Dark Cormac McCarthy
The Manuscript Found in Saragossa Jan Potocki
New Grub Street George Gissing
Peace Gene Wolfe
They Thirst Robert McCammon
The Dark Descent David G. Hartwell
Fantômas Marcel Allain
Prime Evil: New Stories by the Masters of Modern Horror Edited by Douglas E. Winter
Flicker Theodore Roszak
The Devil Rides Out Dennis Wheatley
The Course of the Heart M. John Harrison
Darkness Weaves Karl Edward Wagner
The Nightmare Factory Thomas Ligotti
A Wrinkle in the Skin John Christopher
Skin Kathe Koja
The Trail of Fu Manchu Sax Rohmer
Tales of Horror and the Supernatural Arthur Machen
By Bizarre Hands Joe R. Lansdale
A Scent of New-Mown Hay John Blackburn
The Opener of the Way Robert Bloch
The Playboy Book of Horror and the Supernatural Editors of Playboy
X,Y Michael Blumlein
More Tomorrow & Other Stories Michael Marshall Smith
The Third Ghost Book Edited by Lady Cynthia Asquith
The Off Season Jack Cady
Blood Sport Robert F. Jones
Creep, Shadow! Abraham Merritt
Sleep No More August Derleth
Reprisal Mitchell Smith
Feesters in the Lake Bob Leman
They Return at Evening H. Russell Wakefield
Jumbee and Other Uncanny Tales Henry S. Whitehead
A Haunting Beauty Charles Birkin
Year of the Sex Olympics: Three Television Plays Nigel Kneale
Fancies and Goodnights John Collier
Throat Sprockets Tim Lucas
Read (186)
Title Author
"The Lottery" Shirley Jackson
Lord of the Flies William Golding
"The Body" Stephen King
"The Monkey's Paw" W.W. Jacobs
Sandman Neil Gaiman
The Turn of the Screw Henry James
"The Tell-Tale Heart" Edgar Allan Poe
The House Next Door Anne Rivers Siddons
"Shadow Over Innsmouth" H.P. Lovecraft
The October Country Ray Bradbury
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Alvin Schwartz
30 Days of Night Steve Niles, Ben Templesmith
Ghost Story Peter Straub
The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Tales Edgar Allan Poe
Carrie Stephen King
It Stephen King
Something Wicked This Way Comes Ray Bradbury
Books of Blood 1 - 3 Clive Barker
House of Leaves Mark Z. Danielewski
Carmilla Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Uzumaki Junji Ito
"At the Mountains of Madness" H.P. Lovecraft
Haunting of Hill House Shirley Jackson
Frankenstein Mary Shelley
The Shining Stephen King
Dracula Bram Stoker
A Head Full of Ghosts Paul Tremblay
The Ruins Scott Smith
MacBeth William Shakespeare
The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Robert Louis Stevenson
Heart of Darkness Joseph Conrad
Salem's Lot Stephen King
The Man Who Was Thursday G.K. Chesterton
The Lurking Fear and Other Stories H.P. Lovecraft
Deathbird Stories Harlan Ellison
Johnny Got His Gun Dalton Trumbo
The Damnation Game Clive Barker
A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens
The War of the Worlds H.G. Wells
1984 George Orwell
American Psycho Bret Easton Ellis
Pet Sematary Stephen King
Misery Stephen King
The Phantom of the Opera Gaston Leroux
Coraline Neil Gaiman
Horrorstör Grady Hendrix
The Jewel of Seven Stars Bram Stoker
"The Yellow Wallpaper" Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Doctor Faustus Christopher Marlowe
Twice-Told Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne
Red Dragon Thomas Harris
"I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream" Harlan Ellison
Penpal Dathan Auerbach
Widdershins Oliver Onions
The Island of Dr. Moreau H.G. Wells
Goblin Market Christina Rossetti
Burnt Offerings Robert Marasco
The Road Cormac McCarthy
Invasion of the Body Snatchers Jack Finney
The Devil in America Kai Ashante Wilson
"Please Momma" Cheysa Burke
Meddling Kids Edgar Cantero
Wylding Hall Elizabeth Hand
From Hell Alan Moore, Eddie Campbell
The Stranger Albert Camus
Melmoth the Wanderer Charles Maturin
Infidel Pornsak Pichetshote
The Terror Dan Simmons
The Night They Missed the Horror Show Joe R. Lansdale
Anna Dressed in Blood Kendare Blake
Skin Folk Nalo Hopkinson
Interview with the Vampire Anne Rice
Come Closer Sara Gran
The Blind Owl Sadegh Heydayat
The Exorcist William Peter Blatty
City of Glass Paul Auster
The Devil in Silver Victor LaValle
The Fisherman John Langan
The Mask Dean Koontz
Psycho Robert Bloch
Gothic Tales Elizabeth Gaskell
The Queen of Spades Alexander Pushkin
NOS4A2: A Novel Joe Hill
The Beauty Aliya Whiteley
The Fifth Child Doris Lessing
The Six-Gun Tarot R.S. Belcher
Tales of Terror Charles Higham
The Bloody Chamber Angela Carter
The House on the Borderland William Hope Hodgson
The Girl with All the Gifts M.R. Carey
Experimental Film Gemma Files
I Am Legend Richard Matheson
Beloved Toni Morrison
Horror Horn E. F. Benson
Our Lady of Darkness Fritz Lieber
The Killer Inside Me Jim Thompson
Dark Forces Edited by Kirby McCauley
Dread Nation Justina Ireland
Mongrels: A Novel Stephen Graham Jones
The Grip of It Jac Jemc
The King in Yellow Robert W. Chambers
The Woman In Black Susan Hill
The Anubis Gates Tim Powers
Pages from Cold Point Paul Bowles
The Pet Charles L. Grant
Swan Song Robert McCammon
Her Body and Other Parties: Stories Carmen Maria Machado
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer Patrick Süskind
Parasite Eve Hideaki Sena
The Lesser Dead Christopher Buehlman
Fever Dream Samanta Schweblin
Bird Box Josh Malerman
Exquisite Corpse Poppy Z. Brite
Rotters Daniel Kraus
The Croning Laird Barron
The Cellar Richard Laymon
Collected Ghost Stories* M.R. James
Nightshade Derek Marlowe
The Vampire Lestat Anne Rice
The Troop Nick Cutter
The Sound of his Horn Sarban
White is for Witching Helen Oyeyemi
The Haunted Omnibus Edited by Alexander Laing
Through the Woods Emily Carroll
Mythago Wood Robert Holdstock
"All Our Salt-Bottled Hearts" Sonya Taaffe
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories H.P. Lovecraft
The Outsider, and Others H.P. Lovecraft
The Case of Charles Dexter Ward H.P. Lovecraft
The Ballad of Black Tom Victor LaValle
A Nest of Nightmares Lisa Tuttle
Dark Matter Michelle Paver
A Sight for Sore Eyes Ruth Rendell
Strange Toys Patricia Geary
The Best Tales of Hoffmann E. T. A. Hoffmann
Shutter Courtney Alameda
Some of Your Blood Theodore Sturgeon
The Bone Key Sarah Monette
The Elementals Michael McDowell
The Sheep Look Up John Brunner
Obscura Joe Hart
Finishing Touches Thomas Tessler
Alone with the Horrors Ramsey Campbell
"The Willows" Algernon Blackwood
The Revenger's Tragedy Thomas Middleton
Medusa : a Story of Mystery, and Ecstasy & Strange Horror E. H. Visiak
"It's a Good Life" Jerome Bixby
Broken Monsters Lauren Beukes
The Keep F. Paul Wilson
The House of Souls*** Arthur Machen
The Talented Mr. Ripley Patricia Highsmith
The Drowning Girl Caitlin R. Kiernan
Communion Whitley Strieber
The Other Thomas Tryon
Darker Than You Think Jack Williamson
Feed Mira Grant
Falling Angel William Hjortsberg
Things We Lost in the Fire: Stories Mariana Enriquez
Great Tales of Terror and the Supernatural Edited by Phyllis Fraser, Herbert Wise
The Grotesque Patrick McGrath
The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce Ambrose Bierce
The Ceremonies T. E. D. Klein
The Hunger Alma Katsu
Carnacki, the Ghost Finder William Hope Hodgson
The Face That Must Die Ramsey Campbell
Rebecca Daphne Du Maurier
Hammers on Bone Cassandra Khaw
Maplecroft Cherie Priest
The Night Stalker Jeff Rice
The Girl Next Door Jack Ketchum
A Stir of Echoes Richard Matheson
Nine Horrors and a Dream Joseph Payne Brennan
Silence of the Lambs Thomas Harris
The Bad Seed William March
Frankenstein in Baghdad Ahmed Saadawi
Shadowland Peter Straub
The Second Century of Creepy Stories Sir Hugh Walpole
The Good House Tananarive Due
The Handmaid's Tale Margaret Atwood
House of Flesh Bruno Fischer
The Red Tree Caitlin R. Kiernan
The House with a Clock in its Walls John Bellairs
Murgunstrumm and Others Hugh B. Cave
Spirit Hunters Ellen Oh
The Wandering Jew Eugène Sue
Whispers Dean Koontz
Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation Octavia E. Butler, John Jennings and Damian Duffy
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flavo5000
Posts: 6182
Joined: July 10th, 2014, 6:00 am
Location: Arkansas, USA
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#212

Post by flavo5000 »

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146. The Snowman (Jo Nesbø, 2007)
After the first snowfall in Oslo, a mysterious snowman is found in a front yard by a boy whose mother has gone missing. As detective Harry Hole digs into the missing persons case, a pattern begins to form of a string of homicides perpetrated by a devious killer that uses the snowmen to taunt the police. Hole is a raging alcoholic with a serious chip on his shoulder who suspects that the killer is toying with him specifically, making it personal. Can Harry Hole thwart these horrific crimes?
So I had already seen the mess of a movie based on this one and while Fassbinder was fine as Hole, the movie turned the plot into swiss cheese making it barely comprehensible. So how does the book fare in comparison? On one hand, it is indeed better and more coherent with various plot details fleshed out and character motivations more clearly represented. Having said that, some of those character motivations are bizarre and highly illogical or straight up insane even knowing where they're coming from. The book is full of preposterous twists that seem to exist solely to add drama to the proceedings. We also have more than one deus ex machina and the book seems to have like three different endings. Much of Hole's investigation seems to be stumbling across incredible coincidences that allow him to accuse the wrong person multiple times. Frankly The Snowman is really not that great of a thriller and while it's fairly readable and well-paced, it's just too silly to take seriously.
To Read (152)
tr][td] All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By [/td][td] John Farris [/td][/tr]
Title Author
The Passage Justin Cronin
We Have Always Lived in the Castle Shirley Jackson
The Historian Elizabeth Kostova
The Wasp Factory Iain Banks
Hell House Richard Matheson
The Silent Companions Laura Purcell
Her Fearful Symmetry Audrey Niffenegger
Fledgling Octavia E. Butler
The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket Edgar Allan Poe
Carrion Comfort Dan Simmons
Zone One Colson Whitehead
Ring Koji Suzuki
The Changeling Victor LaValle
HEX Thomas Olde Heuvelt
Pandemonium Daryl Gregory
Winter Tide Ruthanna Emrys
Last Days Brian Evenson
Heart-Shaped Box Joe Hill
The Case Against Satan Ray Russell
Night Film Marissa Pessl
Drawing Blood Poppy Z. Brite
The Last Werewolf Glen Duncan
Lovecraft Country Matt Ruff
Three Moments of an Explosion: Stories China Miéville
The Walls Around Us Nova Ren Suma
Mr. Shivers Robert Jackson Bennett
Fiend: A Novel Peter Stenson
The Frangipani Hotel: Fiction Violet Kupersmith
Rosemary's Baby Ira Levin
Those Across the River Christpher Buehlman
Let the Right One In John Ajvide Lindqvist
The Collector John Fowles
Queen of the Damned Anne Rice
World War Z Max Brooks
"Young Goodman Brown" Nathaniel Hawthorne
Down a Dark Hall Lois Duncan
Intensity Dean Koontz
The Atrocity Archives Charles Stross
The Cipher Kathe Koja
Bloodchild Octavia E. Butler
The Screwfly Solution James Tiptree Jr.
Elizabeth Ken Greenhall
"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" Joyce Carol Oates
Goosebumps (The Complete Series #1-#62) R.L. Stine
Lunar Park Bret Easton Ellis
Minion L.A. Banks
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories Edited by Ann VanderMeer
The Imago Sequence and Other Stories Laird Barron
The Jumbies Tracey Baptiste
The Werewolf of Paris Guy Endore
Furnace Livia Llewellyn
"Left Foot, Right Foot" Nalo Hopkinson
John Dies at the End David Wong
Grendel John Gardner
Northanger Abbey Jane Austen
Uncle Silas Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Out of Space and Time Clark Ashton Smith
Conjure Wife Fritz Lieber
The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch Phillip K. Dick
Worse Things Waiting Manly Wade Wellman
The Trial Franz Kafka
The Land of Laughs Jonathan Carroll
She H. Rider Haggard
The Painted Bird Jerzy Kosiński
The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner James Hogg
Hawksmoor Peter Ackroyd
Song of Kali Dan Simmons
Caleb Williams William Godwin
A Voyage to Arcturus Dave Lindsay
The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade Herman Melville
The Crystal World J.G. Ballard
The Dark Tower and Other Stories C.S. Lewis
The Green Man Kingsley Amis
The Lurker at the Threshold H.P. Lovecraft, August Derleth
The Black Spider Jeremias Gotthelf
The Wolfen Whitley Strieber
The Arabian Nightmare Robert Irwin
The White Devil John Webster
Something about Eve : a comedy of fig-leaves James Branch Cabell
The Totem David Morrell
Night has a Thousand Eyes Carnell Woolrich
The Compleat Werewolf and Other Stories of Fantasy and Science Fiction Anthony Boucher
Sweetheart, Sweetheart Bernard Taylor
The Dark Country Dennis Etchison
Quatermass and the Pit Nigel Kneale
Who Made Stevie Crye? Michael Bishop
In a Lonely Place Karl Edward Wagner
The Track of the Cat Walter Van Tilburg Clark
The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck Alexander Lang
John Silence, Physician Extraordinary Algernon Blackwood
Sub Rosa: Strange Tales Robert Aikman
Dark Feasts Ramsey Campbell
And the Darkness Falls Edited by Boris Karloff
Deliver Me from Eva Paul Bailey
The Last Bouquet: Some Twilight Tales Marjorie Bowen
The Sleeping and the Dead August Derleth
The Monk Matthew Lewis
The Hound of the Baskervilles Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë
Lost Worlds Clark Ashton Smith
Gormenghast Mervyn Peake
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street Stephen Sondheim
Edge of Running Water William Sloane
Harvest Home Thomas Tryon
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen Alan Garner
Who Fears the Devil? Manly Wade Wellman
The Book of Skulls Robert Silverberg
The Boats of the "Glen Carrig" William Hope Hodgson
The Midwich Cuckoos John Wyndham
The Collected Stories of Elizabeth Bowen Elizabeth Bowen
Tales from the Nightside Charles L. Grant
The Hunger and Other Stories Charles Beaumont
The Cement Garden Ian McEwan
Lost Souls Poppy Z. Brite
Outer Dark Cormac McCarthy
The Manuscript Found in Saragossa Jan Potocki
New Grub Street George Gissing
Peace Gene Wolfe
They Thirst Robert McCammon
The Dark Descent David G. Hartwell
Fantômas Marcel Allain
Prime Evil: New Stories by the Masters of Modern Horror Edited by Douglas E. Winter
Flicker Theodore Roszak
The Devil Rides Out Dennis Wheatley
The Course of the Heart M. John Harrison
Darkness Weaves Karl Edward Wagner
The Nightmare Factory Thomas Ligotti
A Wrinkle in the Skin John Christopher
Skin Kathe Koja
The Trail of Fu Manchu Sax Rohmer
Tales of Horror and the Supernatural Arthur Machen
By Bizarre Hands Joe R. Lansdale
A Scent of New-Mown Hay John Blackburn
The Opener of the Way Robert Bloch
The Playboy Book of Horror and the Supernatural Editors of Playboy
X,Y Michael Blumlein
More Tomorrow & Other Stories Michael Marshall Smith
The Third Ghost Book Edited by Lady Cynthia Asquith
The Off Season Jack Cady
Blood Sport Robert F. Jones
Creep, Shadow! Abraham Merritt
Sleep No More August Derleth
Reprisal Mitchell Smith
Feesters in the Lake Bob Leman
They Return at Evening H. Russell Wakefield
Jumbee and Other Uncanny Tales Henry S. Whitehead
A Haunting Beauty Charles Birkin
Year of the Sex Olympics: Three Television Plays Nigel Kneale
Fancies and Goodnights John Collier
Throat Sprockets Tim Lucas
Read (187)
Title Author
"The Lottery" Shirley Jackson
Lord of the Flies William Golding
"The Body" Stephen King
"The Monkey's Paw" W.W. Jacobs
Sandman Neil Gaiman
The Turn of the Screw Henry James
"The Tell-Tale Heart" Edgar Allan Poe
The House Next Door Anne Rivers Siddons
"Shadow Over Innsmouth" H.P. Lovecraft
The October Country Ray Bradbury
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Alvin Schwartz
30 Days of Night Steve Niles, Ben Templesmith
Ghost Story Peter Straub
The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Tales Edgar Allan Poe
Carrie Stephen King
It Stephen King
Something Wicked This Way Comes Ray Bradbury
Books of Blood 1 - 3 Clive Barker
House of Leaves Mark Z. Danielewski
Carmilla Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Uzumaki Junji Ito
"At the Mountains of Madness" H.P. Lovecraft
Haunting of Hill House Shirley Jackson
Frankenstein Mary Shelley
The Shining Stephen King
Dracula Bram Stoker
A Head Full of Ghosts Paul Tremblay
The Ruins Scott Smith
MacBeth William Shakespeare
The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Robert Louis Stevenson
Heart of Darkness Joseph Conrad
Salem's Lot Stephen King
The Man Who Was Thursday G.K. Chesterton
The Lurking Fear and Other Stories H.P. Lovecraft
Deathbird Stories Harlan Ellison
Johnny Got His Gun Dalton Trumbo
The Damnation Game Clive Barker
A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens
The War of the Worlds H.G. Wells
1984 George Orwell
American Psycho Bret Easton Ellis
Pet Sematary Stephen King
Misery Stephen King
The Phantom of the Opera Gaston Leroux
Coraline Neil Gaiman
Horrorstör Grady Hendrix
The Jewel of Seven Stars Bram Stoker
"The Yellow Wallpaper" Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Doctor Faustus Christopher Marlowe
Twice-Told Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne
Red Dragon Thomas Harris
"I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream" Harlan Ellison
Penpal Dathan Auerbach
Widdershins Oliver Onions
The Island of Dr. Moreau H.G. Wells
Goblin Market Christina Rossetti
Burnt Offerings Robert Marasco
The Road Cormac McCarthy
Invasion of the Body Snatchers Jack Finney
The Devil in America Kai Ashante Wilson
"Please Momma" Cheysa Burke
Meddling Kids Edgar Cantero
Wylding Hall Elizabeth Hand
From Hell Alan Moore, Eddie Campbell
The Stranger Albert Camus
Melmoth the Wanderer Charles Maturin
Infidel Pornsak Pichetshote
The Terror Dan Simmons
The Night They Missed the Horror Show Joe R. Lansdale
Anna Dressed in Blood Kendare Blake
Skin Folk Nalo Hopkinson
Interview with the Vampire Anne Rice
Come Closer Sara Gran
The Blind Owl Sadegh Heydayat
The Exorcist William Peter Blatty
City of Glass Paul Auster
The Devil in Silver Victor LaValle
The Fisherman John Langan
The Mask Dean Koontz
Psycho Robert Bloch
Gothic Tales Elizabeth Gaskell
The Queen of Spades Alexander Pushkin
NOS4A2: A Novel Joe Hill
The Beauty Aliya Whiteley
The Fifth Child Doris Lessing
The Six-Gun Tarot R.S. Belcher
Tales of Terror Charles Higham
The Bloody Chamber Angela Carter
The House on the Borderland William Hope Hodgson
The Girl with All the Gifts M.R. Carey
Experimental Film Gemma Files
I Am Legend Richard Matheson
Beloved Toni Morrison
Horror Horn E. F. Benson
Our Lady of Darkness Fritz Lieber
The Killer Inside Me Jim Thompson
Dark Forces Edited by Kirby McCauley
Dread Nation Justina Ireland
Mongrels: A Novel Stephen Graham Jones
The Grip of It Jac Jemc
The King in Yellow Robert W. Chambers
The Woman In Black Susan Hill
The Anubis Gates Tim Powers
Pages from Cold Point Paul Bowles
The Pet Charles L. Grant
Swan Song Robert McCammon
Her Body and Other Parties: Stories Carmen Maria Machado
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer Patrick Süskind
Parasite Eve Hideaki Sena
The Lesser Dead Christopher Buehlman
Fever Dream Samanta Schweblin
Bird Box Josh Malerman
Exquisite Corpse Poppy Z. Brite
Rotters Daniel Kraus
The Croning Laird Barron
The Cellar Richard Laymon
Collected Ghost Stories* M.R. James
Nightshade Derek Marlowe
The Vampire Lestat Anne Rice
The Troop Nick Cutter
The Sound of his Horn Sarban
White is for Witching Helen Oyeyemi
The Haunted Omnibus Edited by Alexander Laing
Through the Woods Emily Carroll
Mythago Wood Robert Holdstock
"All Our Salt-Bottled Hearts" Sonya Taaffe
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories H.P. Lovecraft
The Outsider, and Others H.P. Lovecraft
The Case of Charles Dexter Ward H.P. Lovecraft
The Ballad of Black Tom Victor LaValle
A Nest of Nightmares Lisa Tuttle
Dark Matter Michelle Paver
A Sight for Sore Eyes Ruth Rendell
Strange Toys Patricia Geary
The Best Tales of Hoffmann E. T. A. Hoffmann
Shutter Courtney Alameda
Some of Your Blood Theodore Sturgeon
The Bone Key Sarah Monette
The Elementals Michael McDowell
The Sheep Look Up John Brunner
Obscura Joe Hart
Finishing Touches Thomas Tessler
Alone with the Horrors Ramsey Campbell
"The Willows" Algernon Blackwood
The Revenger's Tragedy Thomas Middleton
Medusa : a Story of Mystery, and Ecstasy & Strange Horror E. H. Visiak
"It's a Good Life" Jerome Bixby
Broken Monsters Lauren Beukes
The Keep F. Paul Wilson
The House of Souls*** Arthur Machen
The Talented Mr. Ripley Patricia Highsmith
The Drowning Girl Caitlin R. Kiernan
Communion Whitley Strieber
The Other Thomas Tryon
Darker Than You Think Jack Williamson
Feed Mira Grant
Falling Angel William Hjortsberg
Things We Lost in the Fire: Stories Mariana Enriquez
Great Tales of Terror and the Supernatural Edited by Phyllis Fraser, Herbert Wise
The Grotesque Patrick McGrath
The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce Ambrose Bierce
The Ceremonies T. E. D. Klein
The Hunger Alma Katsu
Carnacki, the Ghost Finder William Hope Hodgson
The Face That Must Die Ramsey Campbell
Rebecca Daphne Du Maurier
Hammers on Bone Cassandra Khaw
Maplecroft Cherie Priest
The Night Stalker Jeff Rice
The Girl Next Door Jack Ketchum
A Stir of Echoes Richard Matheson
Nine Horrors and a Dream Joseph Payne Brennan
Silence of the Lambs Thomas Harris
The Bad Seed William March
Frankenstein in Baghdad Ahmed Saadawi
Shadowland Peter Straub
The Second Century of Creepy Stories Sir Hugh Walpole
The Good House Tananarive Due
The Handmaid's Tale Margaret Atwood
House of Flesh Bruno Fischer
The Red Tree Caitlin R. Kiernan
The House with a Clock in its Walls John Bellairs
Murgunstrumm and Others Hugh B. Cave
Spirit Hunters Ellen Oh
The Wandering Jew Eugène Sue
Whispers Dean Koontz
Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation Octavia E. Butler, John Jennings and Damian Duffy
The Snowman Jo Nesbø
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Leopardi
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#213

Post by Leopardi »

flavo5000 wrote: March 30th, 2022, 7:54 pm Image
117. Great Tales of Terror and the Supernatural (Edited by Phyllis Fraser & Herbert Wise, 1944)
Here we have another mammoth 1000+ page anthology segmented into "Terror" (non-supernatural tales of murder and suspense) and "Supernatural" with, as the editors themselves point out in the intro, "Terror" getting the short shrift in comparison to the bevy of ghost stories taking up space. On the Terror front, we have much anthologized and beloved stories such as Poe's "The Black Cat" and "The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar", Ambrose Bierce's "The Boarded Window", Saki's "Shredni Vashtar" and Richard E. Connell's highly influential "The Most Dangerous Game". It also includes stories from authors not normally associated with genre fiction like Thomas Hardy ("The Three Strangers"), William Faulkner ("A Rose for Emily") and Ernest Hemingway ("The Killers"), and while none of these would ever be classified as horror, they do all share a dark and macabre footprint that doesn't make them feel out of place in this compendium. Also in Terror we have some lesser known gems like W. W. Jacobs' "The Interruption" (whose much more well-known "The Monkey's Paw" will make an appearance later), H.G. Wells' lesser known "Pollock & The Poroh Man" (which I would argue should've been in the Supernatural section) and the epically suspenseful "Leningen Versus the Ants" by Carl Stephenson.
The Supernatural section which comprises roughly 2/3 of the book kicks off in fine fashion with Edward Bulwer-Lytton's creepy and atmospheric "The Haunters and the Haunted: or, The House and the Brain". Unfortunately it includes an extended epilogue not present in previous editions that really bogs the story down, and it's easy to see why Lytton excised it from prior versions. In addition we have several stories that we've seen many times before and since in other anthologies (mostly with good reason) such as Fitz-James O'Brien's "What Was It?", "The Horla" by Guy de Maupassant, F. Marion Crawford's "The Screaming Skull", Saki's "The Open Window", "The Ghost Ship" from Richard Middleton and "Afterward" from Edith Wharton. It also includes two of M. R. James' heaviest hitters with "Oh Whistle and I'll Come to You, My Lad" and "Casting the Runes". It also includes not one, not two but THREE major novellas: "The Great God Pan" by Arthur Machen, "How Love Came to Professor Gildea" by Robert Hitchens (which was a solid story but honestly felt too drawn out) and Oliver Onions' classic "The Beckoning Fair One". Other standout stories include Algernon Blackwood's "Confession", the fantastical grim whimsy of E.M. Forster's "The Celestial Omnibus" which is like a Magic School Bus episode gone dark, the hauntingly sad and surprisingly subtle "They" from Rudyard Kipling as well as as some favorites I had read previously like Benson's creepy crawly "Caterpillars" and Lovecraft's "The Dunwich Horror". All in all, this is a suitably stacked horror anthology excellently curated with lots of great stories for both seasoned horror fans and newbies looking to dive more into the history of supernatural fiction.
Man, this seems like an epic compilation! I think I've read all of Hardy's short fiction but I honestly can't place The Three Strangers and don't remember a dark and macabre vibe with any of his stories - I feel like I should probably read it again to refresh my memory. And Bulwer-Lytton I've stayed away from for no particular reason, I only have two books from him on the shelves (The Last Days of Pompeii and Valancourt's Eugene Aram). My interest is piqued I wouldn't mind reading The Haunters and the Haunted: or, The House and the Brain before, I'm pretty sure I haven't read it before and with a title like that how could I resist??

Saki's another one that I have an irrational aversion to. There was a compilation of his in a bookstore I frequented as a teenager and there was something about the cover (which, so many years later, I can't remember a thing about) that turned me off of buying anything by him. Maybe it's time I give him a go.
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flavo5000
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#214

Post by flavo5000 »

Leopardi wrote: July 24th, 2022, 5:37 pm
flavo5000 wrote: March 30th, 2022, 7:54 pm Image
117. Great Tales of Terror and the Supernatural (Edited by Phyllis Fraser & Herbert Wise, 1944)
Here we have another mammoth 1000+ page anthology segmented into "Terror" (non-supernatural tales of murder and suspense) and "Supernatural" with, as the editors themselves point out in the intro, "Terror" getting the short shrift in comparison to the bevy of ghost stories taking up space. On the Terror front, we have much anthologized and beloved stories such as Poe's "The Black Cat" and "The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar", Ambrose Bierce's "The Boarded Window", Saki's "Shredni Vashtar" and Richard E. Connell's highly influential "The Most Dangerous Game". It also includes stories from authors not normally associated with genre fiction like Thomas Hardy ("The Three Strangers"), William Faulkner ("A Rose for Emily") and Ernest Hemingway ("The Killers"), and while none of these would ever be classified as horror, they do all share a dark and macabre footprint that doesn't make them feel out of place in this compendium. Also in Terror we have some lesser known gems like W. W. Jacobs' "The Interruption" (whose much more well-known "The Monkey's Paw" will make an appearance later), H.G. Wells' lesser known "Pollock & The Poroh Man" (which I would argue should've been in the Supernatural section) and the epically suspenseful "Leningen Versus the Ants" by Carl Stephenson.
The Supernatural section which comprises roughly 2/3 of the book kicks off in fine fashion with Edward Bulwer-Lytton's creepy and atmospheric "The Haunters and the Haunted: or, The House and the Brain". Unfortunately it includes an extended epilogue not present in previous editions that really bogs the story down, and it's easy to see why Lytton excised it from prior versions. In addition we have several stories that we've seen many times before and since in other anthologies (mostly with good reason) such as Fitz-James O'Brien's "What Was It?", "The Horla" by Guy de Maupassant, F. Marion Crawford's "The Screaming Skull", Saki's "The Open Window", "The Ghost Ship" from Richard Middleton and "Afterward" from Edith Wharton. It also includes two of M. R. James' heaviest hitters with "Oh Whistle and I'll Come to You, My Lad" and "Casting the Runes". It also includes not one, not two but THREE major novellas: "The Great God Pan" by Arthur Machen, "How Love Came to Professor Gildea" by Robert Hitchens (which was a solid story but honestly felt too drawn out) and Oliver Onions' classic "The Beckoning Fair One". Other standout stories include Algernon Blackwood's "Confession", the fantastical grim whimsy of E.M. Forster's "The Celestial Omnibus" which is like a Magic School Bus episode gone dark, the hauntingly sad and surprisingly subtle "They" from Rudyard Kipling as well as as some favorites I had read previously like Benson's creepy crawly "Caterpillars" and Lovecraft's "The Dunwich Horror". All in all, this is a suitably stacked horror anthology excellently curated with lots of great stories for both seasoned horror fans and newbies looking to dive more into the history of supernatural fiction.
Man, this seems like an epic compilation! I think I've read all of Hardy's short fiction but I honestly can't place The Three Strangers and don't remember a dark and macabre vibe with any of his stories - I feel like I should probably read it again to refresh my memory. And Bulwer-Lytton I've stayed away from for no particular reason, I only have two books from him on the shelves (The Last Days of Pompeii and Valancourt's Eugene Aram). My interest is piqued I wouldn't mind reading The Haunters and the Haunted: or, The House and the Brain before, I'm pretty sure I haven't read it before and with a title like that how could I resist??

Saki's another one that I have an irrational aversion to. There was a compilation of his in a bookstore I frequented as a teenager and there was something about the cover (which, so many years later, I can't remember a thing about) that turned me off of buying anything by him. Maybe it's time I give him a go.
Saki is very much in the same vein as O' Henry and John Collier (who I'm reading a collection from right now and loving) with his fairly short stories that often seem to have twist endings. The Three Strangers is one I wouldn't call traditional genre fare, as it pertains to an escaped man slated to be hanged (more thriller I'd say), but still works in the context of the book. The Bulwer-Lytton I've been recommended a couple of times is The Strange Story, but that one is super long, and I just finished The Wandering Jew, so I'm not wanting to dive into something else massive like that.
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flavo5000
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#215

Post by flavo5000 »

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147. Out of Space and Time (Clark Ashton Smith, 1942)
Ashton Clark Smith was primarily known early in his career for his New Romantic style poetry and later in life he would immerse himself more wholly in his artwork and sculpting. But it's the period from 1929 to 1935 to which he is most well-known, a period where he along with Robert E. Howard and H. P. Lovecraft become one of the major pillars of Weird Tales, turning out a dizzying number of fantastical, macabre and lavishly written short stories in this time period that while having echoes of Lovecraft's more elaborate style, creates even more ornate and cosmic worlds of strangeness and wonder. Out of Space & Time is an early collection of Smith's horror and science fiction fiction that he felt was among his best of the time and was only the third book ever released by legendary publishing company Arkham House. The stories in this collection encompass both the best and worst of Smith's tendencies. His sheer imagination is unparalleled, taking the more cosmic elements of H. P. Lovecraft but weaving them into even more detailed, meticulously populated worlds of high fantasy and weird unpleasantness. Lovecraft has his Cthulhu mythos. Smith, while tying into Lovecraft's at times, creates at least four distinct universes of his own including the prehistoric world of Hyperborea, which seems as much in deference to Robert E. Howard as Lovecraft, captured in stories like the darkly humorous moral tale "The Weird of Avoosl Wuthoqquan" and the bizarre" The Testament of Athammaus" about a creature who when beheaded returns from the dead even more grotesque and horrible. Another of his creations is Averoigne, which seems to be a sort of medieval European world where magic is real and vampiric creatures prey on humans such as in "The End of the Story" and "A Rendezvous in Averoigne". The most interesting of these stories I think is "A Night in Malnéant", where a stranger wanders into a grim town where all the villagers are busy in preparations for the funeral of a beautiful woman. It has such a strange and fascinating atmosphere to it while still feeling somewhat grounded. For fans of Lovecraft, included is the first published story by a writer other than Lovecraft that references his Cthulhu mythos, "Return of the Sorcerer" involving a dark warlock and the Necronomicon.
So how do I actually feel about Smith? Well, to be honest, somewhat mixed. Smith has some really great, imaginative ideas in his stories like the Homeric interdimensional travel of "City of Living Flame" and the curse of a past life in "The Chain of Aforgomon". The problem I have with Smith is in his prose style. Smith never met an adverb or adjective he didn't like and piles them on more and more until the stories are barely even comprehensible at times. This is not casual reading. It requires a lot of focus to really pour over the dense and flowery text to get at the meat of what's actually happening in each story, which makes the reading more of a chore than it should be. I feel like Smith is more interested in creating a kind of symphony of words than of conveying his cool and fascinating ideas. Still, if you can barrel through the thick verbiage, Smith has some truly strange and rewarding stories worth checking out.
To Read (151)
tr][td] All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By [/td][td] John Farris [/td][/tr]
Title Author
The Passage Justin Cronin
We Have Always Lived in the Castle Shirley Jackson
The Historian Elizabeth Kostova
The Wasp Factory Iain Banks
Hell House Richard Matheson
The Silent Companions Laura Purcell
Her Fearful Symmetry Audrey Niffenegger
Fledgling Octavia E. Butler
The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket Edgar Allan Poe
Carrion Comfort Dan Simmons
Zone One Colson Whitehead
Ring Koji Suzuki
The Changeling Victor LaValle
HEX Thomas Olde Heuvelt
Pandemonium Daryl Gregory
Winter Tide Ruthanna Emrys
Last Days Brian Evenson
Heart-Shaped Box Joe Hill
The Case Against Satan Ray Russell
Night Film Marissa Pessl
Drawing Blood Poppy Z. Brite
The Last Werewolf Glen Duncan
Lovecraft Country Matt Ruff
Three Moments of an Explosion: Stories China Miéville
The Walls Around Us Nova Ren Suma
Mr. Shivers Robert Jackson Bennett
Fiend: A Novel Peter Stenson
The Frangipani Hotel: Fiction Violet Kupersmith
Rosemary's Baby Ira Levin
Those Across the River Christpher Buehlman
Let the Right One In John Ajvide Lindqvist
The Collector John Fowles
Queen of the Damned Anne Rice
World War Z Max Brooks
"Young Goodman Brown" Nathaniel Hawthorne
Down a Dark Hall Lois Duncan
Intensity Dean Koontz
The Atrocity Archives Charles Stross
The Cipher Kathe Koja
Bloodchild Octavia E. Butler
The Screwfly Solution James Tiptree Jr.
Elizabeth Ken Greenhall
"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" Joyce Carol Oates
Goosebumps (The Complete Series #1-#62) R.L. Stine
Lunar Park Bret Easton Ellis
Minion L.A. Banks
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories Edited by Ann VanderMeer
The Imago Sequence and Other Stories Laird Barron
The Jumbies Tracey Baptiste
The Werewolf of Paris Guy Endore
Furnace Livia Llewellyn
"Left Foot, Right Foot" Nalo Hopkinson
John Dies at the End David Wong
Grendel John Gardner
Northanger Abbey Jane Austen
Uncle Silas Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Conjure Wife Fritz Lieber
The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch Phillip K. Dick
Worse Things Waiting Manly Wade Wellman
The Trial Franz Kafka
The Land of Laughs Jonathan Carroll
She H. Rider Haggard
The Painted Bird Jerzy Kosiński
The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner James Hogg
Hawksmoor Peter Ackroyd
Song of Kali Dan Simmons
Caleb Williams William Godwin
A Voyage to Arcturus Dave Lindsay
The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade Herman Melville
The Crystal World J.G. Ballard
The Dark Tower and Other Stories C.S. Lewis
The Green Man Kingsley Amis
The Lurker at the Threshold H.P. Lovecraft, August Derleth
The Black Spider Jeremias Gotthelf
The Wolfen Whitley Strieber
The Arabian Nightmare Robert Irwin
The White Devil John Webster
Something about Eve : a comedy of fig-leaves James Branch Cabell
The Totem David Morrell
Night has a Thousand Eyes Carnell Woolrich
The Compleat Werewolf and Other Stories of Fantasy and Science Fiction Anthony Boucher
Sweetheart, Sweetheart Bernard Taylor
The Dark Country Dennis Etchison
Quatermass and the Pit Nigel Kneale
Who Made Stevie Crye? Michael Bishop
In a Lonely Place Karl Edward Wagner
The Track of the Cat Walter Van Tilburg Clark
The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck Alexander Lang
John Silence, Physician Extraordinary Algernon Blackwood
Sub Rosa: Strange Tales Robert Aikman
Dark Feasts Ramsey Campbell
And the Darkness Falls Edited by Boris Karloff
Deliver Me from Eva Paul Bailey
The Last Bouquet: Some Twilight Tales Marjorie Bowen
The Sleeping and the Dead August Derleth
The Monk Matthew Lewis
The Hound of the Baskervilles Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë
Lost Worlds Clark Ashton Smith
Gormenghast Mervyn Peake
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street Stephen Sondheim
Edge of Running Water William Sloane
Harvest Home Thomas Tryon
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen Alan Garner
Who Fears the Devil? Manly Wade Wellman
The Book of Skulls Robert Silverberg
The Boats of the "Glen Carrig" William Hope Hodgson
The Midwich Cuckoos John Wyndham
The Collected Stories of Elizabeth Bowen Elizabeth Bowen
Tales from the Nightside Charles L. Grant
The Hunger and Other Stories Charles Beaumont
The Cement Garden Ian McEwan
Lost Souls Poppy Z. Brite
Outer Dark Cormac McCarthy
The Manuscript Found in Saragossa Jan Potocki
New Grub Street George Gissing
Peace Gene Wolfe
They Thirst Robert McCammon
The Dark Descent David G. Hartwell
Fantômas Marcel Allain
Prime Evil: New Stories by the Masters of Modern Horror Edited by Douglas E. Winter
Flicker Theodore Roszak
The Devil Rides Out Dennis Wheatley
The Course of the Heart M. John Harrison
Darkness Weaves Karl Edward Wagner
The Nightmare Factory Thomas Ligotti
A Wrinkle in the Skin John Christopher
Skin Kathe Koja
The Trail of Fu Manchu Sax Rohmer
Tales of Horror and the Supernatural Arthur Machen
By Bizarre Hands Joe R. Lansdale
A Scent of New-Mown Hay John Blackburn
The Opener of the Way Robert Bloch
The Playboy Book of Horror and the Supernatural Editors of Playboy
X,Y Michael Blumlein
More Tomorrow & Other Stories Michael Marshall Smith
The Third Ghost Book Edited by Lady Cynthia Asquith
The Off Season Jack Cady
Blood Sport Robert F. Jones
Creep, Shadow! Abraham Merritt
Sleep No More August Derleth
Reprisal Mitchell Smith
Feesters in the Lake Bob Leman
They Return at Evening H. Russell Wakefield
Jumbee and Other Uncanny Tales Henry S. Whitehead
A Haunting Beauty Charles Birkin
Year of the Sex Olympics: Three Television Plays Nigel Kneale
Fancies and Goodnights John Collier
Throat Sprockets Tim Lucas
Read (188)
Title Author
"The Lottery" Shirley Jackson
Lord of the Flies William Golding
"The Body" Stephen King
"The Monkey's Paw" W.W. Jacobs
Sandman Neil Gaiman
The Turn of the Screw Henry James
"The Tell-Tale Heart" Edgar Allan Poe
The House Next Door Anne Rivers Siddons
"Shadow Over Innsmouth" H.P. Lovecraft
The October Country Ray Bradbury
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Alvin Schwartz
30 Days of Night Steve Niles, Ben Templesmith
Ghost Story Peter Straub
The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Tales Edgar Allan Poe
Carrie Stephen King
It Stephen King
Something Wicked This Way Comes Ray Bradbury
Books of Blood 1 - 3 Clive Barker
House of Leaves Mark Z. Danielewski
Carmilla Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Uzumaki Junji Ito
"At the Mountains of Madness" H.P. Lovecraft
Haunting of Hill House Shirley Jackson
Frankenstein Mary Shelley
The Shining Stephen King
Dracula Bram Stoker
A Head Full of Ghosts Paul Tremblay
The Ruins Scott Smith
MacBeth William Shakespeare
The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Robert Louis Stevenson
Heart of Darkness Joseph Conrad
Salem's Lot Stephen King
The Man Who Was Thursday G.K. Chesterton
The Lurking Fear and Other Stories H.P. Lovecraft
Deathbird Stories Harlan Ellison
Johnny Got His Gun Dalton Trumbo
The Damnation Game Clive Barker
A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens
The War of the Worlds H.G. Wells
1984 George Orwell
American Psycho Bret Easton Ellis
Pet Sematary Stephen King
Misery Stephen King
The Phantom of the Opera Gaston Leroux
Coraline Neil Gaiman
Horrorstör Grady Hendrix
The Jewel of Seven Stars Bram Stoker
"The Yellow Wallpaper" Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Doctor Faustus Christopher Marlowe
Twice-Told Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne
Red Dragon Thomas Harris
"I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream" Harlan Ellison
Penpal Dathan Auerbach
Widdershins Oliver Onions
The Island of Dr. Moreau H.G. Wells
Goblin Market Christina Rossetti
Burnt Offerings Robert Marasco
The Road Cormac McCarthy
Invasion of the Body Snatchers Jack Finney
The Devil in America Kai Ashante Wilson
"Please Momma" Cheysa Burke
Meddling Kids Edgar Cantero
Wylding Hall Elizabeth Hand
From Hell Alan Moore, Eddie Campbell
The Stranger Albert Camus
Melmoth the Wanderer Charles Maturin
Infidel Pornsak Pichetshote
The Terror Dan Simmons
The Night They Missed the Horror Show Joe R. Lansdale
Anna Dressed in Blood Kendare Blake
Skin Folk Nalo Hopkinson
Interview with the Vampire Anne Rice
Come Closer Sara Gran
The Blind Owl Sadegh Heydayat
The Exorcist William Peter Blatty
City of Glass Paul Auster
The Devil in Silver Victor LaValle
The Fisherman John Langan
The Mask Dean Koontz
Psycho Robert Bloch
Gothic Tales Elizabeth Gaskell
The Queen of Spades Alexander Pushkin
NOS4A2: A Novel Joe Hill
The Beauty Aliya Whiteley
The Fifth Child Doris Lessing
The Six-Gun Tarot R.S. Belcher
Tales of Terror Charles Higham
The Bloody Chamber Angela Carter
The House on the Borderland William Hope Hodgson
The Girl with All the Gifts M.R. Carey
Experimental Film Gemma Files
I Am Legend Richard Matheson
Beloved Toni Morrison
Horror Horn E. F. Benson
Our Lady of Darkness Fritz Lieber
The Killer Inside Me Jim Thompson
Dark Forces Edited by Kirby McCauley
Dread Nation Justina Ireland
Mongrels: A Novel Stephen Graham Jones
The Grip of It Jac Jemc
The King in Yellow Robert W. Chambers
The Woman In Black Susan Hill
The Anubis Gates Tim Powers
Pages from Cold Point Paul Bowles
The Pet Charles L. Grant
Swan Song Robert McCammon
Her Body and Other Parties: Stories Carmen Maria Machado
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer Patrick Süskind
Parasite Eve Hideaki Sena
The Lesser Dead Christopher Buehlman
Fever Dream Samanta Schweblin
Bird Box Josh Malerman
Exquisite Corpse Poppy Z. Brite
Rotters Daniel Kraus
The Croning Laird Barron
The Cellar Richard Laymon
Collected Ghost Stories* M.R. James
Nightshade Derek Marlowe
The Vampire Lestat Anne Rice
The Troop Nick Cutter
The Sound of his Horn Sarban
White is for Witching Helen Oyeyemi
The Haunted Omnibus Edited by Alexander Laing
Through the Woods Emily Carroll
Mythago Wood Robert Holdstock
"All Our Salt-Bottled Hearts" Sonya Taaffe
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories H.P. Lovecraft
The Outsider, and Others H.P. Lovecraft
The Case of Charles Dexter Ward H.P. Lovecraft
The Ballad of Black Tom Victor LaValle
A Nest of Nightmares Lisa Tuttle
Dark Matter Michelle Paver
A Sight for Sore Eyes Ruth Rendell
Strange Toys Patricia Geary
The Best Tales of Hoffmann E. T. A. Hoffmann
Shutter Courtney Alameda
Some of Your Blood Theodore Sturgeon
The Bone Key Sarah Monette
The Elementals Michael McDowell
The Sheep Look Up John Brunner
Obscura Joe Hart
Finishing Touches Thomas Tessler
Alone with the Horrors Ramsey Campbell
"The Willows" Algernon Blackwood
The Revenger's Tragedy Thomas Middleton
Medusa : a Story of Mystery, and Ecstasy & Strange Horror E. H. Visiak
"It's a Good Life" Jerome Bixby
Broken Monsters Lauren Beukes
The Keep F. Paul Wilson
The House of Souls*** Arthur Machen
The Talented Mr. Ripley Patricia Highsmith
The Drowning Girl Caitlin R. Kiernan
Communion Whitley Strieber
The Other Thomas Tryon
Darker Than You Think Jack Williamson
Feed Mira Grant
Falling Angel William Hjortsberg
Things We Lost in the Fire: Stories Mariana Enriquez
Great Tales of Terror and the Supernatural Edited by Phyllis Fraser, Herbert Wise
The Grotesque Patrick McGrath
The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce Ambrose Bierce
The Ceremonies T. E. D. Klein
The Hunger Alma Katsu
Carnacki, the Ghost Finder William Hope Hodgson
The Face That Must Die Ramsey Campbell
Rebecca Daphne Du Maurier
Hammers on Bone Cassandra Khaw
Maplecroft Cherie Priest
The Night Stalker Jeff Rice
The Girl Next Door Jack Ketchum
A Stir of Echoes Richard Matheson
Nine Horrors and a Dream Joseph Payne Brennan
Silence of the Lambs Thomas Harris
The Bad Seed William March
Frankenstein in Baghdad Ahmed Saadawi
Shadowland Peter Straub
The Second Century of Creepy Stories Sir Hugh Walpole
The Good House Tananarive Due
The Handmaid's Tale Margaret Atwood
House of Flesh Bruno Fischer
The Red Tree Caitlin R. Kiernan
The House with a Clock in its Walls John Bellairs
Murgunstrumm and Others Hugh B. Cave
Spirit Hunters Ellen Oh
The Wandering Jew Eugène Sue
Whispers Dean Koontz
Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation Octavia E. Butler, John Jennings and Damian Duffy
The Snowman Jo Nesbø
Out of Space and Time Clark Ashton Smith
User avatar
flavo5000
Posts: 6182
Joined: July 10th, 2014, 6:00 am
Location: Arkansas, USA
Contact:

#216

Post by flavo5000 »

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148. Fancies and Goodnights (John Collier, 1951)
John Collier was a noted short fiction writer whose macabre and bitterly funny and ironic stories often appeared in a bevy of periodicals throughout the '30s through '50s. His writing is known for its polished but incredibly satiric and misanthropic themes with occasional fantastical premises, and his stories have often been compared to Saki's but with a darker, mean streak to them. His stories with their brisk pacing and humorously twisted endings made for a good fit for anthology TV series for which he was often adapted. His works have appeared in Lights Out, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, The Twilight Zone, Tales of the Unexpected and others. Fancies and Goodnights collections a big chunk of his best fiction from this time period into one handy tome of death, revenge and seething humor.
Collier's stories in Fancies & Goodnights range from macabre tales of murder like "The Touch of Nutmeg Makes It", "Wet Saturday" (whose story of weird family homicide seems like a precursor to stuff like Spider Baby) and "Back for Christmas" to bizarre flights of fancy like the genii of "Bottle Party" the weird after hours department store civilization of "Evening Primrose" or the strange plant tale "Green Thoughts". While some of Collier's stories do come across a little predictable and repetitive (he's especially fond of husbands and wives killing each other), overall I found this collection absolutely delightful and highly readable. While some of this books in this monster horror list have felt a little like a chore at times (The Wandering Jew, I'm looking at you...), I actively looked forward to diving into the next story in this collection with a giddy anticipation of what kind of weird, funny nonsense Collier will come up with. I definitely recommend this one.
To Read (150)
tr][td] All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By [/td][td] John Farris [/td][/tr]
Title Author
The Passage Justin Cronin
We Have Always Lived in the Castle Shirley Jackson
The Historian Elizabeth Kostova
The Wasp Factory Iain Banks
Hell House Richard Matheson
The Silent Companions Laura Purcell
Her Fearful Symmetry Audrey Niffenegger
Fledgling Octavia E. Butler
The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket Edgar Allan Poe
Carrion Comfort Dan Simmons
Zone One Colson Whitehead
Ring Koji Suzuki
The Changeling Victor LaValle
HEX Thomas Olde Heuvelt
Pandemonium Daryl Gregory
Winter Tide Ruthanna Emrys
Last Days Brian Evenson
Heart-Shaped Box Joe Hill
The Case Against Satan Ray Russell
Night Film Marissa Pessl
Drawing Blood Poppy Z. Brite
The Last Werewolf Glen Duncan
Lovecraft Country Matt Ruff
Three Moments of an Explosion: Stories China Miéville
The Walls Around Us Nova Ren Suma
Mr. Shivers Robert Jackson Bennett
Fiend: A Novel Peter Stenson
The Frangipani Hotel: Fiction Violet Kupersmith
Rosemary's Baby Ira Levin
Those Across the River Christpher Buehlman
Let the Right One In John Ajvide Lindqvist
The Collector John Fowles
Queen of the Damned Anne Rice
World War Z Max Brooks
"Young Goodman Brown" Nathaniel Hawthorne
Down a Dark Hall Lois Duncan
Intensity Dean Koontz
The Atrocity Archives Charles Stross
The Cipher Kathe Koja
Bloodchild Octavia E. Butler
The Screwfly Solution James Tiptree Jr.
Elizabeth Ken Greenhall
"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" Joyce Carol Oates
Goosebumps (The Complete Series #1-#62) R.L. Stine
Lunar Park Bret Easton Ellis
Minion L.A. Banks
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories Edited by Ann VanderMeer
The Imago Sequence and Other Stories Laird Barron
The Jumbies Tracey Baptiste
The Werewolf of Paris Guy Endore
Furnace Livia Llewellyn
"Left Foot, Right Foot" Nalo Hopkinson
John Dies at the End David Wong
Grendel John Gardner
Northanger Abbey Jane Austen
Uncle Silas Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Conjure Wife Fritz Lieber
The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch Phillip K. Dick
Worse Things Waiting Manly Wade Wellman
The Trial Franz Kafka
The Land of Laughs Jonathan Carroll
She H. Rider Haggard
The Painted Bird Jerzy Kosiński
The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner James Hogg
Hawksmoor Peter Ackroyd
Song of Kali Dan Simmons
Caleb Williams William Godwin
A Voyage to Arcturus Dave Lindsay
The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade Herman Melville
The Crystal World J.G. Ballard
The Dark Tower and Other Stories C.S. Lewis
The Green Man Kingsley Amis
The Lurker at the Threshold H.P. Lovecraft, August Derleth
The Black Spider Jeremias Gotthelf
The Wolfen Whitley Strieber
The Arabian Nightmare Robert Irwin
The White Devil John Webster
Something about Eve : a comedy of fig-leaves James Branch Cabell
The Totem David Morrell
Night has a Thousand Eyes Carnell Woolrich
The Compleat Werewolf and Other Stories of Fantasy and Science Fiction Anthony Boucher
Sweetheart, Sweetheart Bernard Taylor
The Dark Country Dennis Etchison
Quatermass and the Pit Nigel Kneale
Who Made Stevie Crye? Michael Bishop
In a Lonely Place Karl Edward Wagner
The Track of the Cat Walter Van Tilburg Clark
The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck Alexander Lang
John Silence, Physician Extraordinary Algernon Blackwood
Sub Rosa: Strange Tales Robert Aikman
Dark Feasts Ramsey Campbell
And the Darkness Falls Edited by Boris Karloff
Deliver Me from Eva Paul Bailey
The Last Bouquet: Some Twilight Tales Marjorie Bowen
The Sleeping and the Dead August Derleth
The Monk Matthew Lewis
The Hound of the Baskervilles Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë
Lost Worlds Clark Ashton Smith
Gormenghast Mervyn Peake
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street Stephen Sondheim
Edge of Running Water William Sloane
Harvest Home Thomas Tryon
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen Alan Garner
Who Fears the Devil? Manly Wade Wellman
The Book of Skulls Robert Silverberg
The Boats of the "Glen Carrig" William Hope Hodgson
The Midwich Cuckoos John Wyndham
The Collected Stories of Elizabeth Bowen Elizabeth Bowen
Tales from the Nightside Charles L. Grant
The Hunger and Other Stories Charles Beaumont
The Cement Garden Ian McEwan
Lost Souls Poppy Z. Brite
Outer Dark Cormac McCarthy
The Manuscript Found in Saragossa Jan Potocki
New Grub Street George Gissing
Peace Gene Wolfe
They Thirst Robert McCammon
The Dark Descent David G. Hartwell
Fantômas Marcel Allain
Prime Evil: New Stories by the Masters of Modern Horror Edited by Douglas E. Winter
Flicker Theodore Roszak
The Devil Rides Out Dennis Wheatley
The Course of the Heart M. John Harrison
Darkness Weaves Karl Edward Wagner
The Nightmare Factory Thomas Ligotti
A Wrinkle in the Skin John Christopher
Skin Kathe Koja
The Trail of Fu Manchu Sax Rohmer
Tales of Horror and the Supernatural Arthur Machen
By Bizarre Hands Joe R. Lansdale
A Scent of New-Mown Hay John Blackburn
The Opener of the Way Robert Bloch
The Playboy Book of Horror and the Supernatural Editors of Playboy
X,Y Michael Blumlein
More Tomorrow & Other Stories Michael Marshall Smith
The Third Ghost Book Edited by Lady Cynthia Asquith
The Off Season Jack Cady
Blood Sport Robert F. Jones
Creep, Shadow! Abraham Merritt
Sleep No More August Derleth
Reprisal Mitchell Smith
Feesters in the Lake Bob Leman
They Return at Evening H. Russell Wakefield
Jumbee and Other Uncanny Tales Henry S. Whitehead
A Haunting Beauty Charles Birkin
Year of the Sex Olympics: Three Television Plays Nigel Kneale
Throat Sprockets Tim Lucas
Read (189)
Title Author
"The Lottery" Shirley Jackson
Lord of the Flies William Golding
"The Body" Stephen King
"The Monkey's Paw" W.W. Jacobs
Sandman Neil Gaiman
The Turn of the Screw Henry James
"The Tell-Tale Heart" Edgar Allan Poe
The House Next Door Anne Rivers Siddons
"Shadow Over Innsmouth" H.P. Lovecraft
The October Country Ray Bradbury
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Alvin Schwartz
30 Days of Night Steve Niles, Ben Templesmith
Ghost Story Peter Straub
The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Tales Edgar Allan Poe
Carrie Stephen King
It Stephen King
Something Wicked This Way Comes Ray Bradbury
Books of Blood 1 - 3 Clive Barker
House of Leaves Mark Z. Danielewski
Carmilla Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Uzumaki Junji Ito
"At the Mountains of Madness" H.P. Lovecraft
Haunting of Hill House Shirley Jackson
Frankenstein Mary Shelley
The Shining Stephen King
Dracula Bram Stoker
A Head Full of Ghosts Paul Tremblay
The Ruins Scott Smith
MacBeth William Shakespeare
The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Robert Louis Stevenson
Heart of Darkness Joseph Conrad
Salem's Lot Stephen King
The Man Who Was Thursday G.K. Chesterton
The Lurking Fear and Other Stories H.P. Lovecraft
Deathbird Stories Harlan Ellison
Johnny Got His Gun Dalton Trumbo
The Damnation Game Clive Barker
A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens
The War of the Worlds H.G. Wells
1984 George Orwell
American Psycho Bret Easton Ellis
Pet Sematary Stephen King
Misery Stephen King
The Phantom of the Opera Gaston Leroux
Coraline Neil Gaiman
Horrorstör Grady Hendrix
The Jewel of Seven Stars Bram Stoker
"The Yellow Wallpaper" Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Doctor Faustus Christopher Marlowe
Twice-Told Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne
Red Dragon Thomas Harris
"I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream" Harlan Ellison
Penpal Dathan Auerbach
Widdershins Oliver Onions
The Island of Dr. Moreau H.G. Wells
Goblin Market Christina Rossetti
Burnt Offerings Robert Marasco
The Road Cormac McCarthy
Invasion of the Body Snatchers Jack Finney
The Devil in America Kai Ashante Wilson
"Please Momma" Cheysa Burke
Meddling Kids Edgar Cantero
Wylding Hall Elizabeth Hand
From Hell Alan Moore, Eddie Campbell
The Stranger Albert Camus
Melmoth the Wanderer Charles Maturin
Infidel Pornsak Pichetshote
The Terror Dan Simmons
The Night They Missed the Horror Show Joe R. Lansdale
Anna Dressed in Blood Kendare Blake
Skin Folk Nalo Hopkinson
Interview with the Vampire Anne Rice
Come Closer Sara Gran
The Blind Owl Sadegh Heydayat
The Exorcist William Peter Blatty
City of Glass Paul Auster
The Devil in Silver Victor LaValle
The Fisherman John Langan
The Mask Dean Koontz
Psycho Robert Bloch
Gothic Tales Elizabeth Gaskell
The Queen of Spades Alexander Pushkin
NOS4A2: A Novel Joe Hill
The Beauty Aliya Whiteley
The Fifth Child Doris Lessing
The Six-Gun Tarot R.S. Belcher
Tales of Terror Charles Higham
The Bloody Chamber Angela Carter
The House on the Borderland William Hope Hodgson
The Girl with All the Gifts M.R. Carey
Experimental Film Gemma Files
I Am Legend Richard Matheson
Beloved Toni Morrison
Horror Horn E. F. Benson
Our Lady of Darkness Fritz Lieber
The Killer Inside Me Jim Thompson
Dark Forces Edited by Kirby McCauley
Dread Nation Justina Ireland
Mongrels: A Novel Stephen Graham Jones
The Grip of It Jac Jemc
The King in Yellow Robert W. Chambers
The Woman In Black Susan Hill
The Anubis Gates Tim Powers
Pages from Cold Point Paul Bowles
The Pet Charles L. Grant
Swan Song Robert McCammon
Her Body and Other Parties: Stories Carmen Maria Machado
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer Patrick Süskind
Parasite Eve Hideaki Sena
The Lesser Dead Christopher Buehlman
Fever Dream Samanta Schweblin
Bird Box Josh Malerman
Exquisite Corpse Poppy Z. Brite
Rotters Daniel Kraus
The Croning Laird Barron
The Cellar Richard Laymon
Collected Ghost Stories* M.R. James
Nightshade Derek Marlowe
The Vampire Lestat Anne Rice
The Troop Nick Cutter
The Sound of his Horn Sarban
White is for Witching Helen Oyeyemi
The Haunted Omnibus Edited by Alexander Laing
Through the Woods Emily Carroll
Mythago Wood Robert Holdstock
"All Our Salt-Bottled Hearts" Sonya Taaffe
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories H.P. Lovecraft
The Outsider, and Others H.P. Lovecraft
The Case of Charles Dexter Ward H.P. Lovecraft
The Ballad of Black Tom Victor LaValle
A Nest of Nightmares Lisa Tuttle
Dark Matter Michelle Paver
A Sight for Sore Eyes Ruth Rendell
Strange Toys Patricia Geary
The Best Tales of Hoffmann E. T. A. Hoffmann
Shutter Courtney Alameda
Some of Your Blood Theodore Sturgeon
The Bone Key Sarah Monette
The Elementals Michael McDowell
The Sheep Look Up John Brunner
Obscura Joe Hart
Finishing Touches Thomas Tessler
Alone with the Horrors Ramsey Campbell
"The Willows" Algernon Blackwood
The Revenger's Tragedy Thomas Middleton
Medusa : a Story of Mystery, and Ecstasy & Strange Horror E. H. Visiak
"It's a Good Life" Jerome Bixby
Broken Monsters Lauren Beukes
The Keep F. Paul Wilson
The House of Souls*** Arthur Machen
The Talented Mr. Ripley Patricia Highsmith
The Drowning Girl Caitlin R. Kiernan
Communion Whitley Strieber
The Other Thomas Tryon
Darker Than You Think Jack Williamson
Feed Mira Grant
Falling Angel William Hjortsberg
Things We Lost in the Fire: Stories Mariana Enriquez
Great Tales of Terror and the Supernatural Edited by Phyllis Fraser, Herbert Wise
The Grotesque Patrick McGrath
The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce Ambrose Bierce
The Ceremonies T. E. D. Klein
The Hunger Alma Katsu
Carnacki, the Ghost Finder William Hope Hodgson
The Face That Must Die Ramsey Campbell
Rebecca Daphne Du Maurier
Hammers on Bone Cassandra Khaw
Maplecroft Cherie Priest
The Night Stalker Jeff Rice
The Girl Next Door Jack Ketchum
A Stir of Echoes Richard Matheson
Nine Horrors and a Dream Joseph Payne Brennan
Silence of the Lambs Thomas Harris
The Bad Seed William March
Frankenstein in Baghdad Ahmed Saadawi
Shadowland Peter Straub
The Second Century of Creepy Stories Sir Hugh Walpole
The Good House Tananarive Due
The Handmaid's Tale Margaret Atwood
House of Flesh Bruno Fischer
The Red Tree Caitlin R. Kiernan
The House with a Clock in its Walls John Bellairs
Murgunstrumm and Others Hugh B. Cave
Spirit Hunters Ellen Oh
The Wandering Jew Eugène Sue
Whispers Dean Koontz
Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation Octavia E. Butler, John Jennings and Damian Duffy
The Snowman Jo Nesbø
Out of Space and Time Clark Ashton Smith
Fancies and Goodnights John Collier
User avatar
flavo5000
Posts: 6182
Joined: July 10th, 2014, 6:00 am
Location: Arkansas, USA
Contact:

#217

Post by flavo5000 »

Image
149. Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (Stephen SondheimHugh Wheeler, 1979)
The story of Sweeney Todd is something of a sad one. A former barber, imprisoned unjustly by a corrupt judge who rapes Todd's wife, driving her to madness, and takes Todd's daughter as his ward, grooming her to become the evil judge's wife. The story picks up with Todd having broken out of prison with an intense lust for revenge. He rents out a place above Mrs. Lovett, a pie maker of ill-repute. Due to a set of circumstances involving blackmail, Todd slices open the neck of an unscrupulous peddler whose body is then used in Mrs. Lovett's meat pies. Upon her new meat pies' success, Lovett convinces Todd of a new enterprise, one where Todd provides the bodies (unmarried, no family) while Mrs. Lovett provides the pies. Meanwhile Todd desperately wants his revenge.
Sweeney Todd was first written in penny dreadful serial form back in 1846 and become an almost instant success, spawning multiple stage adaptations, most famous Sondheim's morbidly amusing and surprisingly poignant version first produced in 1979 which this book was adapted from. I've never seen the stage play in person yet (but I'd like to some day), but I have seen Tim Burton's film version which stays largely faithful to Sondheim's original production. While the general plot points were already familiar, one thing I very much appreciated on reading this was picking up the nuances in the lyrics which at times can fly by while watching the staged production. Songs like "A Little Priest" and "God, that's Good" are even funnier when I'm able to break down exactly what's being sung and a song like "Pretty Women" is easier to appreciate with its layered meanings. Some may wonder why a transcribed play was included in a list of best horror novels. While I haven't read the original version (sometimes referred to as String of Pearls), if it's anything like other penny dreadfuls of the time, it's most likely overly long-winded with many needless digressions (after all, the authors were paid by the word, not the quality). What Sondheim does in taking the already more compact stage play version and injecting songs both bitterly humorous and haunting in equal measure, heightens the material, making more meaningful and atmospheric than it may have otherwise been in its original incarnation. If you're a fan of the musical, check this one out to get a deeper sense of the subject matter. If you've never seen the musical in any form, I may suggest actually watching it first to give you a context into the cadence and rhythms of the songs which tends to have a lot of discordant, overlapping verse which can come across a little confusing in text form if you aren't familiar with how it was original presented. Otherwise, it's pretty short and worth a look.
To Read (149)
tr][td] All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By [/td][td] John Farris [/td][/tr]
Title Author
The Passage Justin Cronin
We Have Always Lived in the Castle Shirley Jackson
The Historian Elizabeth Kostova
The Wasp Factory Iain Banks
Hell House Richard Matheson
The Silent Companions Laura Purcell
Her Fearful Symmetry Audrey Niffenegger
Fledgling Octavia E. Butler
The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket Edgar Allan Poe
Carrion Comfort Dan Simmons
Zone One Colson Whitehead
Ring Koji Suzuki
The Changeling Victor LaValle
HEX Thomas Olde Heuvelt
Pandemonium Daryl Gregory
Winter Tide Ruthanna Emrys
Last Days Brian Evenson
Heart-Shaped Box Joe Hill
The Case Against Satan Ray Russell
Night Film Marissa Pessl
Drawing Blood Poppy Z. Brite
The Last Werewolf Glen Duncan
Lovecraft Country Matt Ruff
Three Moments of an Explosion: Stories China Miéville
The Walls Around Us Nova Ren Suma
Mr. Shivers Robert Jackson Bennett
Fiend: A Novel Peter Stenson
The Frangipani Hotel: Fiction Violet Kupersmith
Rosemary's Baby Ira Levin
Those Across the River Christpher Buehlman
Let the Right One In John Ajvide Lindqvist
The Collector John Fowles
Queen of the Damned Anne Rice
World War Z Max Brooks
"Young Goodman Brown" Nathaniel Hawthorne
Down a Dark Hall Lois Duncan
Intensity Dean Koontz
The Atrocity Archives Charles Stross
The Cipher Kathe Koja
Bloodchild Octavia E. Butler
The Screwfly Solution James Tiptree Jr.
Elizabeth Ken Greenhall
"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" Joyce Carol Oates
Goosebumps (The Complete Series #1-#62) R.L. Stine
Lunar Park Bret Easton Ellis
Minion L.A. Banks
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories Edited by Ann VanderMeer
The Imago Sequence and Other Stories Laird Barron
The Jumbies Tracey Baptiste
The Werewolf of Paris Guy Endore
Furnace Livia Llewellyn
"Left Foot, Right Foot" Nalo Hopkinson
John Dies at the End David Wong
Grendel John Gardner
Northanger Abbey Jane Austen
Uncle Silas Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Conjure Wife Fritz Lieber
The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch Phillip K. Dick
Worse Things Waiting Manly Wade Wellman
The Trial Franz Kafka
The Land of Laughs Jonathan Carroll
She H. Rider Haggard
The Painted Bird Jerzy Kosiński
The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner James Hogg
Hawksmoor Peter Ackroyd
Song of Kali Dan Simmons
Caleb Williams William Godwin
A Voyage to Arcturus Dave Lindsay
The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade Herman Melville
The Crystal World J.G. Ballard
The Dark Tower and Other Stories C.S. Lewis
The Green Man Kingsley Amis
The Lurker at the Threshold H.P. Lovecraft, August Derleth
The Black Spider Jeremias Gotthelf
The Wolfen Whitley Strieber
The Arabian Nightmare Robert Irwin
The White Devil John Webster
Something about Eve : a comedy of fig-leaves James Branch Cabell
The Totem David Morrell
Night has a Thousand Eyes Carnell Woolrich
The Compleat Werewolf and Other Stories of Fantasy and Science Fiction Anthony Boucher
Sweetheart, Sweetheart Bernard Taylor
The Dark Country Dennis Etchison
Quatermass and the Pit Nigel Kneale
Who Made Stevie Crye? Michael Bishop
In a Lonely Place Karl Edward Wagner
The Track of the Cat Walter Van Tilburg Clark
The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck Alexander Lang
John Silence, Physician Extraordinary Algernon Blackwood
Sub Rosa: Strange Tales Robert Aikman
Dark Feasts Ramsey Campbell
And the Darkness Falls Edited by Boris Karloff
Deliver Me from Eva Paul Bailey
The Last Bouquet: Some Twilight Tales Marjorie Bowen
The Sleeping and the Dead August Derleth
The Monk Matthew Lewis
The Hound of the Baskervilles Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë
Lost Worlds Clark Ashton Smith
Gormenghast Mervyn Peake
Edge of Running Water William Sloane
Harvest Home Thomas Tryon
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen Alan Garner
Who Fears the Devil? Manly Wade Wellman
The Book of Skulls Robert Silverberg
The Boats of the "Glen Carrig" William Hope Hodgson
The Midwich Cuckoos John Wyndham
The Collected Stories of Elizabeth Bowen Elizabeth Bowen
Tales from the Nightside Charles L. Grant
The Hunger and Other Stories Charles Beaumont
The Cement Garden Ian McEwan
Lost Souls Poppy Z. Brite
Outer Dark Cormac McCarthy
The Manuscript Found in Saragossa Jan Potocki
New Grub Street George Gissing
Peace Gene Wolfe
They Thirst Robert McCammon
The Dark Descent David G. Hartwell
Fantômas Marcel Allain
Prime Evil: New Stories by the Masters of Modern Horror Edited by Douglas E. Winter
Flicker Theodore Roszak
The Devil Rides Out Dennis Wheatley
The Course of the Heart M. John Harrison
Darkness Weaves Karl Edward Wagner
The Nightmare Factory Thomas Ligotti
A Wrinkle in the Skin John Christopher
Skin Kathe Koja
The Trail of Fu Manchu Sax Rohmer
Tales of Horror and the Supernatural Arthur Machen
By Bizarre Hands Joe R. Lansdale
A Scent of New-Mown Hay John Blackburn
The Opener of the Way Robert Bloch
The Playboy Book of Horror and the Supernatural Editors of Playboy
X,Y Michael Blumlein
More Tomorrow & Other Stories Michael Marshall Smith
The Third Ghost Book Edited by Lady Cynthia Asquith
The Off Season Jack Cady
Blood Sport Robert F. Jones
Creep, Shadow! Abraham Merritt
Sleep No More August Derleth
Reprisal Mitchell Smith
Feesters in the Lake Bob Leman
They Return at Evening H. Russell Wakefield
Jumbee and Other Uncanny Tales Henry S. Whitehead
A Haunting Beauty Charles Birkin
Year of the Sex Olympics: Three Television Plays Nigel Kneale
Throat Sprockets Tim Lucas
Read (190)
Title Author
"The Lottery" Shirley Jackson
Lord of the Flies William Golding
"The Body" Stephen King
"The Monkey's Paw" W.W. Jacobs
Sandman Neil Gaiman
The Turn of the Screw Henry James
"The Tell-Tale Heart" Edgar Allan Poe
The House Next Door Anne Rivers Siddons
"Shadow Over Innsmouth" H.P. Lovecraft
The October Country Ray Bradbury
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Alvin Schwartz
30 Days of Night Steve Niles, Ben Templesmith
Ghost Story Peter Straub
The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Tales Edgar Allan Poe
Carrie Stephen King
It Stephen King
Something Wicked This Way Comes Ray Bradbury
Books of Blood 1 - 3 Clive Barker
House of Leaves Mark Z. Danielewski
Carmilla Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Uzumaki Junji Ito
"At the Mountains of Madness" H.P. Lovecraft
Haunting of Hill House Shirley Jackson
Frankenstein Mary Shelley
The Shining Stephen King
Dracula Bram Stoker
A Head Full of Ghosts Paul Tremblay
The Ruins Scott Smith
MacBeth William Shakespeare
The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Robert Louis Stevenson
Heart of Darkness Joseph Conrad
Salem's Lot Stephen King
The Man Who Was Thursday G.K. Chesterton
The Lurking Fear and Other Stories H.P. Lovecraft
Deathbird Stories Harlan Ellison
Johnny Got His Gun Dalton Trumbo
The Damnation Game Clive Barker
A Christmas Carol Charles Dickens
The War of the Worlds H.G. Wells
1984 George Orwell
American Psycho Bret Easton Ellis
Pet Sematary Stephen King
Misery Stephen King
The Phantom of the Opera Gaston Leroux
Coraline Neil Gaiman
Horrorstör Grady Hendrix
The Jewel of Seven Stars Bram Stoker
"The Yellow Wallpaper" Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Doctor Faustus Christopher Marlowe
Twice-Told Tales Nathaniel Hawthorne
Red Dragon Thomas Harris
"I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream" Harlan Ellison
Penpal Dathan Auerbach
Widdershins Oliver Onions
The Island of Dr. Moreau H.G. Wells
Goblin Market Christina Rossetti
Burnt Offerings Robert Marasco
The Road Cormac McCarthy
Invasion of the Body Snatchers Jack Finney
The Devil in America Kai Ashante Wilson
"Please Momma" Cheysa Burke
Meddling Kids Edgar Cantero
Wylding Hall Elizabeth Hand
From Hell Alan Moore, Eddie Campbell
The Stranger Albert Camus
Melmoth the Wanderer Charles Maturin
Infidel Pornsak Pichetshote
The Terror Dan Simmons
The Night They Missed the Horror Show Joe R. Lansdale
Anna Dressed in Blood Kendare Blake
Skin Folk Nalo Hopkinson
Interview with the Vampire Anne Rice
Come Closer Sara Gran
The Blind Owl Sadegh Heydayat
The Exorcist William Peter Blatty
City of Glass Paul Auster
The Devil in Silver Victor LaValle
The Fisherman John Langan
The Mask Dean Koontz
Psycho Robert Bloch
Gothic Tales Elizabeth Gaskell
The Queen of Spades Alexander Pushkin
NOS4A2: A Novel Joe Hill
The Beauty Aliya Whiteley
The Fifth Child Doris Lessing
The Six-Gun Tarot R.S. Belcher
Tales of Terror Charles Higham
The Bloody Chamber Angela Carter
The House on the Borderland William Hope Hodgson
The Girl with All the Gifts M.R. Carey
Experimental Film Gemma Files
I Am Legend Richard Matheson
Beloved Toni Morrison
Horror Horn E. F. Benson
Our Lady of Darkness Fritz Lieber
The Killer Inside Me Jim Thompson
Dark Forces Edited by Kirby McCauley
Dread Nation Justina Ireland
Mongrels: A Novel Stephen Graham Jones
The Grip of It Jac Jemc
The King in Yellow Robert W. Chambers
The Woman In Black Susan Hill
The Anubis Gates Tim Powers
Pages from Cold Point Paul Bowles
The Pet Charles L. Grant
Swan Song Robert McCammon
Her Body and Other Parties: Stories Carmen Maria Machado
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer Patrick Süskind
Parasite Eve Hideaki Sena
The Lesser Dead Christopher Buehlman
Fever Dream Samanta Schweblin
Bird Box Josh Malerman
Exquisite Corpse Poppy Z. Brite
Rotters Daniel Kraus
The Croning Laird Barron
The Cellar Richard Laymon
Collected Ghost Stories* M.R. James
Nightshade Derek Marlowe
The Vampire Lestat Anne Rice
The Troop Nick Cutter
The Sound of his Horn Sarban
White is for Witching Helen Oyeyemi
The Haunted Omnibus Edited by Alexander Laing
Through the Woods Emily Carroll
Mythago Wood Robert Holdstock
"All Our Salt-Bottled Hearts" Sonya Taaffe
The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories H.P. Lovecraft
The Outsider, and Others H.P. Lovecraft
The Case of Charles Dexter Ward H.P. Lovecraft
The Ballad of Black Tom Victor LaValle
A Nest of Nightmares Lisa Tuttle
Dark Matter Michelle Paver
A Sight for Sore Eyes Ruth Rendell
Strange Toys Patricia Geary
The Best Tales of Hoffmann E. T. A. Hoffmann
Shutter Courtney Alameda
Some of Your Blood Theodore Sturgeon
The Bone Key Sarah Monette
The Elementals Michael McDowell
The Sheep Look Up John Brunner
Obscura Joe Hart
Finishing Touches Thomas Tessler
Alone with the Horrors Ramsey Campbell
"The Willows" Algernon Blackwood
The Revenger's Tragedy Thomas Middleton
Medusa : a Story of Mystery, and Ecstasy & Strange Horror E. H. Visiak
"It's a Good Life" Jerome Bixby
Broken Monsters Lauren Beukes
The Keep F. Paul Wilson
The House of Souls*** Arthur Machen
The Talented Mr. Ripley Patricia Highsmith
The Drowning Girl Caitlin R. Kiernan
Communion Whitley Strieber
The Other Thomas Tryon
Darker Than You Think Jack Williamson
Feed Mira Grant
Falling Angel William Hjortsberg
Things We Lost in the Fire: Stories Mariana Enriquez
Great Tales of Terror and the Supernatural Edited by Phyllis Fraser, Herbert Wise
The Grotesque Patrick McGrath
The Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce Ambrose Bierce
The Ceremonies T. E. D. Klein
The Hunger Alma Katsu
Carnacki, the Ghost Finder William Hope Hodgson
The Face That Must Die Ramsey Campbell
Rebecca Daphne Du Maurier
Hammers on Bone Cassandra Khaw
Maplecroft Cherie Priest
The Night Stalker Jeff Rice
The Girl Next Door Jack Ketchum
A Stir of Echoes Richard Matheson
Nine Horrors and a Dream Joseph Payne Brennan
Silence of the Lambs Thomas Harris
The Bad Seed William March
Frankenstein in Baghdad Ahmed Saadawi
Shadowland Peter Straub
The Second Century of Creepy Stories Sir Hugh Walpole
The Good House Tananarive Due
The Handmaid's Tale Margaret Atwood
House of Flesh Bruno Fischer
The Red Tree Caitlin R. Kiernan
The House with a Clock in its Walls John Bellairs
Murgunstrumm and Others Hugh B. Cave
Spirit Hunters Ellen Oh
The Wandering Jew Eugène Sue
Whispers Dean Koontz
Kindred: A Graphic Novel Adaptation Octavia E. Butler, John Jennings and Damian Duffy
The Snowman Jo Nesbø
Out of Space and Time Clark Ashton Smith
Fancies and Goodnights John Collier
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street Stephen Sondheim
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flavo5000
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#218

Post by flavo5000 »

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150. The Cipher (Kathe Koja, 1991)
Nicholas and Nakota are a fucked up pair of degenerates in the dregs of society who stumble across a mysterious abyss in a dilapidated tenement building. They dub it the "fun hole" and before long Nakota's intense fascination with it leads to macabre experiments of sending bugs and mouse heads into it, warped them into odd shapes that distorts nature. It begins to spiral out of control when they send a video camera down into the hole, filming the oblivion. What they see on the tape begins to affect them and those around them in increasingly disturbing ways. Nicholas in particular is both drawn to and repelled by the "fun hole" even more intensely than most. That could have something to do with his own fun sized "fun hole" growing in his hand.
The Cipher is misanthropy incarnate. The character of Nicholas seethes with nihilism oozing from every pore (in some ways more literally than others). The book reminds me of the style of Caitlin R. Kiernan's stream of conscious weirdness (and it wouldn't surprise me of Koja was a major influence on Kiernan) with Nicholas's thoughts a constant mish mash of running commentary on the gutter trash situations he finds himself in. The whole time though, you get a sense that he knows or cares about more than he's letting on, giving it an unreliable narrator tone at times. At other times though, he comes across completely unfiltered and ambivalent about every screwed up thing he stumbles into. In a way, this creates a somewhat unfulfilling experience. If my main character doesn't care about what's happening, why should I? Additionally the book feels heavily with very little actually happening in the second act besides our narrator ranting about how shitty Nakota's friends are and complaining about how terrible he feels. I honestly feel like this would've worked better as a novelette maybe. The premise is an interesting one and there are definitely some engaging plot developments in places, but the pacing just drags at times with Koja wanting you to feel as shitty as the characters in the book. Having said all that, I can definitely see why this was seen as a breath of fresh air coming out of the more straightforward King/Koontz horror explosion of the '80s, offering something more strange, uncomfortable and abstract.
To Read (148)
tr][td] All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By [/td][td] John Farris [/td][/tr]
Title Author
The Passage Justin Cronin
We Have Always Lived in the Castle Shirley Jackson
The Historian Elizabeth Kostova
The Wasp Factory Iain Banks
Hell House Richard Matheson
The Silent Companions Laura Purcell
Her Fearful Symmetry Audrey Niffenegger
Fledgling Octavia E. Butler
The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket Edgar Allan Poe
Carrion Comfort Dan Simmons
Zone One Colson Whitehead
Ring Koji Suzuki
The Changeling Victor LaValle
HEX Thomas Olde Heuvelt
Pandemonium Daryl Gregory
Winter Tide Ruthanna Emrys
Last Days Brian Evenson
Heart-Shaped Box Joe Hill
The Case Against Satan Ray Russell
Night Film Marissa Pessl
Drawing Blood Poppy Z. Brite
The Last Werewolf Glen Duncan
Lovecraft Country Matt Ruff
Three Moments of an Explosion: Stories China Miéville
The Walls Around Us Nova Ren Suma
Mr. Shivers Robert Jackson Bennett
Fiend: A Novel Peter Stenson
The Frangipani Hotel: Fiction Violet Kupersmith
Rosemary's Baby Ira Levin
Those Across the River Christpher Buehlman
Let the Right One In John Ajvide Lindqvist
The Collector John Fowles
Queen of the Damned Anne Rice
World War Z Max Brooks
"Young Goodman Brown" Nathaniel Hawthorne
Down a Dark Hall Lois Duncan
Intensity Dean Koontz
The Atrocity Archives Charles Stross
Bloodchild Octavia E. Butler
The Screwfly Solution James Tiptree Jr.
Elizabeth Ken Greenhall
"Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" Joyce Carol Oates
Goosebumps (The Complete Series #1-#62) R.L. Stine
Lunar Park Bret Easton Ellis
Minion L.A. Banks
The Weird: A Compendium of Strange and Dark Stories Edited by Ann VanderMeer
The Imago Sequence and Other Stories Laird Barron
The Jumbies Tracey Baptiste
The Werewolf of Paris Guy Endore
Furnace Livia Llewellyn
"Left Foot, Right Foot" Nalo Hopkinson
John Dies at the End David Wong
Grendel John Gardner
Northanger Abbey Jane Austen
Uncle Silas Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
Conjure Wife Fritz Lieber
The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch Phillip K. Dick
Worse Things Waiting Manly Wade Wellman
The Trial Franz Kafka
The Land of Laughs Jonathan Carroll
She H. Rider Haggard
The Painted Bird Jerzy Kosiński
The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner James Hogg
Hawksmoor Peter Ackroyd
Song of Kali Dan Simmons
Caleb Williams William Godwin
A Voyage to Arcturus Dave Lindsay
The Confidence-Man: His Masquerade Herman Melville
The Crystal World J.G. Ballard
The Dark Tower and Other Stories C.S. Lewis
The Green Man Kingsley Amis
The Lurker at the Threshold H.P. Lovecraft, August Derleth
The Black Spider Jeremias Gotthelf
The Wolfen Whitley Strieber
The Arabian Nightmare Robert Irwin
The White Devil John Webster
Something about Eve : a comedy of fig-leaves James Branch Cabell
The Totem David Morrell
Night has a Thousand Eyes Carnell Woolrich
The Compleat Werewolf and Other Stories of Fantasy and Science Fiction Anthony Boucher
Sweetheart, Sweetheart Bernard Taylor
The Dark Country Dennis Etchison
Quatermass and the Pit Nigel Kneale
Who Made Stevie Crye? Michael Bishop
In a Lonely Place Karl Edward Wagner
The Track of the Cat Walter Van Tilburg Clark
The Cadaver of Gideon Wyck Alexander Lang
John Silence, Physician Extraordinary Algernon Blackwood
Sub Rosa: Strange Tales Robert Aikman
Dark Feasts Ramsey Campbell
And the Darkness Falls Edited by Boris Karloff
Deliver Me from Eva Paul Bailey
The Last Bouquet: Some Twilight Tales Marjorie Bowen
The Sleeping and the Dead August Derleth
The Monk Matthew Lewis
The Hound of the Baskervilles Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde
Jane Eyre Charlotte Brontë
Lost Worlds Clark Ashton Smith
Gormenghast Mervyn Peake
Edge of Running Water William Sloane
Harvest Home Thomas Tryon
The Weirdstone of Brisingamen Alan Garner
Who Fears the Devil? Manly Wade Wellma