I’m a sucker for a reading challenge, especially when it coincides with one of my own. The last two years in October, I’ve taken my own *All Hallow’s Read challenge (*from an idea by Neil Gaiman). I limit my October reading choices to tales of the supernatural.
Two years ago, I read Richard Matheson’s Hell House and Stephen King’s The Shining. Last year, I chose Broken Monsters by Lauren Beukes, Bag of Bones by King, again, and Nightmare Magazine#37: Queers Destroy Horror!
I chose this as my second ‘All Hallows Read‘ book after finishing Richard Matheson’s Hell Houseearlier in October. At over 650 pages it’s a big read, yet it rarely felt like a slog. I’m not a huge fan of King, but I’ve always found his work very readable. I went through a phase of reading his novels in my teens spanning from Misery (1987) to The Dark Half (1989). Unfortunately, this included The Tommyknockers which was a slog to finish.
The Shining is one of King’s most famous novels as well as being very highly rated. It’s basically a haunted-house story, but I also found it to be a fascinating look into alcoholism and self-control. The main character, Jack Torrance, is a recovering alcoholic with a fiery temper, so well portrayed by Jack Nicholson in Kubrick’s movie. In the book, the characters are a lot more fleshed out than in the film. This gives us a chance to feel more attached to them, making their eventual fates that bit more distressing. Continue reading →
I’m starting my All Hallow’s Read tonight. I’ve been looking forward to this since I ordered the book the other day. I’m not a big fan of horror any more. I want to see if it can still chill me like it did when I was a teenager. Back then, I went through a Lovecraft phase as well as enjoying some of the books by King, James Herbert and Shaun Hutson – anyone remember ‘Slugs’?…
‘Hell House’ by Richard Matheson arrived in the post today. It was published in 1971. It’s the book that kept popping up on the lists of best horror stories I was checking. That and King’s ‘The Shining’, which I haven’t read either. Maybe next year. Continue reading →