Halloween

Chilling stories for the spooky season.



Horror Stories: Classic Tales from Hoffmann to Hodgson


19th Century 20th Century ---

It might seem strange, and I’m sure it’s not a preference that many people share, but sometimes when I feel my worst — very anxious, very depressed, very not well — and can’t sleep, scary stories are what I turn to. There’s something about ghosts, goblins, vampires, and spooky houses in settings a hundred and fifty years old that draws me out of the racing thoughts my brain gets stuck in. This is a review of Horror Stories.


The Woman in Black


Contemporary

I’ve met people that swear by Camp Crystal Lake and others that don Freddy’s classic bladed gloves or put on the Ghostface mask from the Scream series. But nothing really gives me that feeling of decay, destruction, and ghostliness like stories, films, and books that have Victorian settings. This is a review of Susan Hill’s The Woman in Black.




Japanese Ghost Stories


Victorian Era

Why do I like ghost stories? I like them because I like to hear stories. I like to suspend my disbelief for that instant why I wonder if they could happen. I like them because I like to read stories about a version of reality that is just a bit off-kilter and unexplained. This is a review of Lafcadio Hearn’s Japanese Ghost Stories.





Songs of a Dead Dreamer and Grimscribe


Contemporary

Something to note about Ligotti: You have to expect to think. Sometimes, when I’m in the mood for a horror story, I’ll pick up a collection and know that I’m reading a good yarn that is just and only that. But Ligotti interweaves an existential dread into his stories and concepts that keep you thinking long after the story ends. This is a review of Songs of a Dead Dreamer and Grimscribe.