On the Page: Frightening Favourites (Part One)
With Hallowe’en right around the corner, we here at LMPR wanted to share our favourite frightening reads.
In part one of this two part series we discuss harrowing accounts of real life trauma, mysterious ghost stories, and epic sagas of horror.
Laura Murray – The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
I love a good ghost story, scary movie or gory, edge-of-your-seat episode of The Walking Dead. So when I was asked to select a spooky, goose bump-worthy book – I immediately glanced at the copy of Shirley Jackson’s chilling tale amongst the pile of unread paperbacks that tower on my nightstand.
Rightly considered “one of the greatest ghost stories published during the 20th century”, The Haunting of Hill House, complete with inexplicable noises, self-closing doors, and enough supernatural horror to keep you up at night, is frighteningly perfect reading material in which to celebrate the spirits on Hallows Eve.
Shona Wercholuk – A House in the Sky: A Memoir by Amanda Lindhout and Sara Corbett
I’m not one for zombies, witches, or ghouls – I can’t even handle a slightly mysterious campfire story. So instead I went for a novel I found to be truly harrowing.
A House in the Sky is the true story of Canadian journalist, Amanda Lindhout’s, 15-month captivity in Somalia. Held Hostage for 460 days, she suffers mental and physical abuse, receives “wife lessons,” and daringly risks an escape.
This incredibly vivid recollection takes you on a journey through Amanda’s pain, fear and complete devastation as she constantly wonders if she will make it out dead or alive.
Brian Paterson – The Dark Tower series by Stephen King
Horror novels have been a guilty pleasure since I was far too young to be reading them. R.L. Stine paved the way for Lovecraft, Koontz, and – my personal favourite – Stephen King.
I first read The Gunslinger when I was twelve – and would have to wait another decade for the Dark Tower magnum opus to reach its conclusion. It stands out as one of literature’s most ambitious and epic undertakings.
The seven-volume series not only interweaves horror, sci fi, western, magic realism, and autobiography – but unifies every book King has written into a single world. The powers of Carrie and The Shining’s Danny are explained. We discover exactly what that clown in It was. And long-forgotten secondary characters re-emerge.
It’s a series that has shaped my understanding and appreciation of storytelling throughout my entire life.
Check back in next week for Part Two of LMPR’s Frightening Favourites!