Unhappy with the way her life is going, Eleanor jumps at the chance of helping out when Dr Montague invites her and two others to stay at the mysterious Hill House. Along with Theodora and Luke, she soon discovers the initial cheerful atmosphere in the house becoming oppressive.
Famously inspirational to authors like Stephen King and Donna Tartt, and reminiscent of the likes of Lovecraft and MR James, this is a solid study of psychological horror. Unlike many horror novels, nothing very much actually happens, but the underlying menace as the house plays its own role in the story is enough to keep readers on edge. And while it didn’t scare me in the way other horror/ghost stories have, there is an unsettling and disconcerting quality to Jackson’s writing. Her descriptions of the interior of the house would definitely stop me going anywhere near the place.
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