Shirley Jackson
We Have Always Lived in the Castle

We Have Always Lived in the Castle

I read this as my "book you can finish in a day" for the 2016 Reading Challenge. As expected, it's not exactly scary, but Jackson is sure good at infusing a story with a creepy atmosphere. In this work, her last completed novel before her death, she tells the story of the Blackwood family. Not so long ago there were seven Blackwoods, but four of them dropped dead from arsenic poisoning several years ago and how that happened remains a mystery. Read this during daylight hours: its themes of family secrets, hateful neighbors, and mysterious deaths aren't the stuff of bedtime reading.

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Dark Tales

Dark Tales

Thanks to recent film adaptations of We Have Always Lived in the Castle and The Haunting of Hill House, Shirley Jackson's fiction is more popular than ever. Her famous short stories like "The Lottery" are just as entertaining, and perhaps more HSP-friendly, than her adapted novels. Jackson expertly turns the seemingly mundane into deeply unsettling events, revealing the darker side of humanity in the process. The first story in this collection stars "Miss Adela Strangeworth" who hates sloppiness and loves her home. Of course, nothing is as it seems, and Miss Strangeworth's stroll around town takes a sinister turn.

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