I added this to my TBR list because The Yellow Wallpaper is on the 1001 Books list and it looked interesting. I was surprised, and a little disappointI added this to my TBR list because The Yellow Wallpaper is on the 1001 Books list and it looked interesting. I was surprised, and a little disappointed, that that particular story is so short. I wanted more of the drama and horror of a mind slipping into psychosis but thinking that everything's actually getting better. Come to think of it, maybe it's a good thing that she kept the story brief.
Gilman was a feminist and a socialist and she wrote her stories and essays for the purpose of presenting her views on how society could and should be changed for the better. While I don't agree with all her views, I did find her writing style to be perfect for her purpose. She writes clearly and elegantly without browbeating her readers. She has very definite opinions but I got the impression that, were I to sit and discuss them with her, she would listen to my opinions and then politely but firmly point out why I was wrong to hold such opinions. It would be a fun and interesting conversation....more
Thirty stories by twenty Goodreads authors. Each is supposed to have a twist at the end. Most did. Some didn't. A couple had "Whoa!-Didn't-see-that-coThirty stories by twenty Goodreads authors. Each is supposed to have a twist at the end. Most did. Some didn't. A couple had "Whoa!-Didn't-see-that-coming!" endings. I enjoyed all the stories. Some need a little editing. A few were excellent - story, writing, editing all near perfection....more
When Poe is good, he’s one of the best. When he’s not so good, he’s boring at best and just plain silly at worst. If you want to read Poe - and everyoWhen Poe is good, he’s one of the best. When he’s not so good, he’s boring at best and just plain silly at worst. If you want to read Poe - and everyone should read him at one time or another - stick with the stories and poems you’ve heard about from as far back as high school....more
O’Connor must have been a strangely interesting individual with a dark and twisted imagination. Fortunately, she also had mad skills as a writer and sO’Connor must have been a strangely interesting individual with a dark and twisted imagination. Fortunately, she also had mad skills as a writer and storyteller, so she was able to leave some of that imagination behind for the rest of us to enjoy from time to time....more
I wasn't as impressed with You Shall Never Know Security as I wanted to be. I love good horror stories and dark tales. The more visceral my reaction tI wasn't as impressed with You Shall Never Know Security as I wanted to be. I love good horror stories and dark tales. The more visceral my reaction to them, the better I like them. That’s why I looked forward to reading Hamantaschen’s stories. Maybe I've read so many horror stories and dark tales that my tolerance level is higher than that of most people. Perhaps I've seen too many episodes of Criminal Minds. It’s possible I’m just jaded by a world where actual headlines include things like: “Miami Police Shoot, Kill Man Eating Another Man’s Face”. Whatever the reason, these stories just didn't evoke the reaction I was hoping for. The blurb on the back of the book claims “(t)hese are stories that challenge expectations and reject the staid conventions of the genre.” I just didn't see any of that in these stories. When I was in ninth or tenth grade, I read “The Open Window” by Saki and “Thus I Refute Beelzy” by John Collier. More than forty years later, I still remember both of those stories in pretty good detail. A week after laying down You Shall Never Know Security for the last time, I don’t remember any of the thirteen stories contained between its covers.
The writing ranges from mediocre to pretty good, but many of the stories could use a final edit. The inclusion of so many “big words” was probably intended to make the stories feel more esoteric, but they left me feeling like I was reading a Word-of-the-Day calendar. The stories themselves seemed aimless and the “twists” at the ends left me with more of a “WTF?” than an “Oh, Wow!” feeling; like Hansel and Gretel wandering through the forest until they stumble into a clearing and find…toilets hanging from all the trees.
If you’re a fan of odd tales, this could be the book for you. If you prefer horror stories and dark tales, proceed at your own risk....more
Madison County, New York is the home of Colgate University and of many individuals who have experienced ghostly encounters during their corporeal timeMadison County, New York is the home of Colgate University and of many individuals who have experienced ghostly encounters during their corporeal time here on earth. Nine of those individuals have related their encounters to Teresa R. Andrews, and she has collected them in a short volume entitled Shades of Souls Passed. A young man travels to his mother’s newly- purchased home for “Thanksgiving Weekend” and comes across an entity who is clearly familiar with the house…including the door in the basement. “Alley-Oop” is a beloved horse whose spirit lingers long enough for a final goodbye. A priest experiences a “Dark Night of the Soul” when he attends a conference and winds up sharing a house with something evil. A little girl giggles and plays “Hide and Seek” with a man as he works at home. A young girl encounters “The Midnight Gardener” along a wooded path on her way to her best friend’s house. “The Bonnie Brae Loch” is an inn from which a woman and her friend are chased by an evil spirit. A volunteer working the late shift in an old house converted to a museum sees two lost souls in the midst of a “Winter Storm.” A young man watches children playing along the edge of “The Meadow” that was the campground of their ancient tribe. A young mother remembers “An Unexpected Guest” who joined the teenage party she threw when her parents were away.
In the Introduction, Andrews says “…when I began to hear the firsthand accounts in this book, my skin really started to crawl again like it did when I was a kid. I felt the doors slowly creak open with every tale I heard.” That’s what I look for in a truly good ghost/horror story. Without that, what’s the point of reading them? Andrews has “the voice” for telling ghost stories. I got at least one skin-crawl shiver out of each story in this collection. At only eighty-one pages it can be read at one sitting. I read it in two nights just so I could savor it a little longer....more