All Hallow’s Read Redux

Several weeks back Mr. Pond posted about an All Hallow’s Read. For reasons beyond his control, he was unable to put together the list of books and stories he came up with. So, by his request, I’m putting up the list here. Unfortunately I’ll only be able to list the titles without any Skull Ratings (TM Red Rocker) or any commentary on the stories and their suitability for different ages. But I must needs return to watching The Rocky Horror Picture Show. 🙂

Here’s the list:

  1. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
  2. The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
  3. Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury
  4. The Day Louis Got Eaten by John Fardell
  5. The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
  6. The Last Apprentice: Revenge of the Witch by Joseph Delaney
  7. The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux
  8. Dracula by Bram Stoker
  9. The Horla by Guy de Maupassant
  10. Coraline by Neil Gaiman
  11. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
  12. Frankenstein by Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
  13. Honeysuckle Cottage by P.G. Wodehouse
  14. The Portent by George MacDonald
  15. Lilith by George MacDonald
  16. The Cask of Amontillado by Edgar Allan Poe
  17. Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving
  18. The October Country by Ray Bradbury
  19. The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe
  20. We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson
  21. The Lottery by Shirley Jackson
  22. That Hideous Strength by C.S. Lewis
  23. The Inferno by Dante Alighieri
  24. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
  25. Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner by James Hogg
  26. The Master of Ballantrae by Robert Louis Stevenson
  27. Anything by M.R. James or Algernon Blackwood
  28. The Room in the Tower by E.F. Benson
  29. The Man-Wolf by Erckmann-Chatrian
  30. The Invisible Eye by Erckmann Chatrian
  31. And of course anything by H.P. Lovecraft but especially The Haunter of the Dark, The Shadow Over Innsmouth, The Music of Erik Zann, At the Mountains of Madness, The Dunwich Horror, & The Outsider

Once you’ve been out trick or treating, pick up a good scary story and enjoy, compliments of The Hogshead. Happy Halloween!!


13 thoughts on “All Hallow’s Read Redux

  1. Anything by RL Stevenson, Ray Bradbury, Shirley Jackson, or EA Poe is pretty much guaranteed to rate 4 Skulls. Also MR James (Oh whistle and I’ll come to you my lad ) As for Mary Shelley and Bram Stoker, they pretty much defined the genre. And HP Lovecraft owns large tracts of the genre. De Maupassant had other fish to fry, but excelled when he dabbled in horror. Rowling had her flashes of 4 Skull brilliance – CoS or PoA anyone? But like de Maupassant, horror is not her true metier. And Charlotte Bronte launched a related but distinct genre: the gothic story.

    I can’t comment on the other authors in the list, not having read their works.

    I also feel the need to mention three other skullworthy classics:

    WH Hodgson’s The Whistling Rooom
    WW Jacobs’ The Monkey’s Paw
    J Bixby’s It’s a Good Life

    On an unrelated topic – what do people think about The Cabin in the Woods, Drew Goddard and Joss Whedon’s post-post-modern take on the classic slasher genre?

  2. Speaking of genre definers, it’s Bram Stoker’s 165th birthday.

    The commemerative Google logo features 11 of Stoker’s characters, plus two animal companions.

    Four skulls to whoever can correctly identify the 11 characters.
    Bonus questions what is the character at the left-end of the logo doing?

    I’ll get us started: the character on the right end is the Count 🙂

  3. A great Google graphic, Red Rocker, so thanks for bringing it up! Here goes:

    Dr. Seward
    Dr. Von Helsing
    The three vampiress concubines
    Count Dracula

  4. Okay, I have to confess I am totally phobic about spiders. I could barely read those scenes in the Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings and, of course, Harry Potter, in which spiders loom large. And as for watching them scurry about…well, Ron, I’m with you…Let’s get out of here!!!

    So here is my big question for Red Rocker — I really do want to see Cabin in the Woods, but what about that thing in the trailer that slips down though the hole into the basement? Really…How bad is it????

  5. Four Skulls to cbiondi. And yes, that is Renfield trying to eke out his insane asylum diet a la Papillon.

    Mary Ellen I checked the trailer, and from what I can remember the thing in the elevator is not arachnoid in origin. However, part of the fun in Cabin in the Woods is identifying the vast array of monsters. I’m pretty sure there must be fan sites dedicated to the topic – and I just looked it up:

  6. Oh, I’d also recommend:

    # The Fall of the House of Usher – Edgar Allan Poe
    # Shoggoth’s Old Perculiar – Neil Gaiman
    # Swamp-Thing – Alan Moore
    # The Turn of the Screw – Henry James (be warned, it’s not for the faint of heart)
    # The Canterville Ghost – Oscar Wilde (scary but funny)
    # She – J. Ryder Haggar
    # The Hannibal Lecter books by Thomas Harris
    # The Woman In Black – Susan Hill
    # The Bloody Chamber – Angela Carter
    # Rappacini’s Daughter – Nathaniel Hawthorne
    # Mr. Loveday’s Little Outing – Evelyn Waugh
    # Anything by Stephen King but especially The Shining or IT. Avoid The Stand at all costs, it is so dull.

    Out of the all the books the others have mentioned, Oh Whistle And I’ll Come To You My Lad by M.R. James (mentioned by Red Rocker at the top) is easily the most disturbing.

  7. I have to disagree about The Stand

    It is kind of long, granted. And with a cast of hundreds it’s kind of hard to care too much about any given character. But if the end-of-civilisation as we know it plot doesn’t get you, the stand off between the forces of Evil vs the forces of Good will. But I confess, what I really enjoy about the book is how the characters deal with the issues of basic survival come the apocalypse: how long will the canned food last before we have to start growing food from seed?

  8. I respectfully disagree. The apocalypse storyline is just meant to hook people into reading it despite the fact that it plays a largely minor role in the plot. The villain makes Argus Filch look threatening and there never even was a stand-off between good and evil. After plowing through swathes of mediocrity, you expect a climactic battle between good and evil but oh, not on Stephen King’s watch. He should have been sued for that ending. The hand of God? I found myself wondering if it was a parody. Good old Stephen King. His set-ups are great but his payoffs are (expletive deleted). He invents great characters and then uses them again and again and again and again and again and again.

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