Hell House by Richard MathesonCan any soul survive?
Regarded as the Mount Everest of haunted houses, Belasco House has witnessed scenes of almost unimaginable horror and depravity. Two previous expeditions to investigate its secrets met with disaster, the participants destroyed by murder, suicide or insanity. Now a new investigation has been mounted - four strangers, each with his or her own reason for daring the unknown torments and temptations of the mansion...
'Textbook terror': How The Haunting of Hill House rewrote horror's rules
Arrival at "HELL HOUSE" begins with the appearance of a creepy dense fog as you might imagine, but what happens within its windowless confines is the true terror with multiple gruesome acts of sexual violence and other unrelenting vicious attacks by a supernatural presence. As the story concludes, the mediums view spoiler [ do eventually discover the secret to destroying the evil spirit which was, unfortunately, pretty much anti-climatic compared to the rest of the book, and also too late to save Dr. Barrett and Florence, hide spoiler ] but this is still one HELL of a haunted house read, and I can certainly imagine the disturbing impact it must have had when it first came out back in Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Want to Read saving….
Great post. I want to reread this novel since it has been so long. My second time around with I Am Legend several months ago caused me to dig out all my old Matheson books. Stir of Echoes is another that I read but can't remember much from. I too was underwhelmed by Hell House. It's fine but but no classic in my book. Thanks for saying it, Will.
As Shirley Jackson told it, the inspiration for The Haunting of Hill House came after she read about a group of 19th-century psychic researchers who moved into a supposedly haunted house in order to study it. Who else could terrify with the sight of a picnic on a lawn? Jackson has undergone something of a renaissance in recent years: long beloved by writers from King to Neil Gaiman, she was nonetheless out of print in the UK until One of his three recruits for the project is Eleanor Vance, an immensely lonely woman who has spent her life caring for her loathed mother. Horror writers today hold Hill House up as a shining example of the genre.
It's not just because the book is a masterclass in psychological terror—something that's always more easily pulled off in print than on film, since a book allows a reader to enter the interior world of a character far better than a film can. It's also because it has been been adapted for the screen twice: once with the superb film directed by Robert Wise, a beautifully shot and deliriously spooky black-and-white horror film, and again in from director Jan de Bont, his a forgettable remake bloated with CGI and late '90s hokeyness. You can also imagine how preemptively annoyed I was that the new version of Shirley Jackson's tale would be a series rather than a film—although I admit I was pleased that Mike Flanagan's show would use the full title of Jackson's novel both movies shortened the title to The Haunting likely because of the similarly titled horror flick House on Haunted Hill , released in and remade in But the book, which tells the tale of a group who spend time in a rumored haunted mansion as part of a parapsychological study, is a slim volume, less than pages. How and why!
Hell House is a horror novel by American novelist Richard Matheson , published in The story concerns four people — Dr. Lionel Barrett, a physicist with an interest in parapsychology , his wife Edith, and two mediums Florence Tanner, a spiritualist and mental medium, and Benjamin Franklin Fischer, a physical medium — who are hired by dying millionaire, William Reinhardt Deutsch, to investigate the possibility of life after death, with a time limit of one week. To do so, they must enter the infamous Belasco House in Maine , regarded as the most haunted house in the world. The house is called "Hell House" due to the horrible acts of blasphemy and perversion that occurred there under the silent influence and supervision of Emeric Belasco.
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