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Come Along With Me

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  1,033 ratings  ·  134 reviews
A haunting and psychologically driven collection from Shirley Jackson that includes her best-known story "The Lottery"

At last, Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery" enters Penguin Classics, sixty-five years after it shocked America audiences and elicited the most responses of any piece in New Yorker history. In her gothic visions of small-town America, Jackson, the author of
Paperback, 256 pages
Published October 1st 1995 by Penguin Books (first published 1968)
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Average rating 4.08  · 
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 ·  1,033 ratings  ·  134 reviews

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Diane S ☔
Apr 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When the whole family comes down with the gripe it makes for an amusing night of bed switching, blanket and pillow switching along with the many accouterments the various family members take to bed. Delightful, amusing and as a parent she must have had a great deal of patience.
Feb 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This Halloween, read Shirley Jackson!!

The subtlety that works incredibly well in classic horror films works its magnificent power in this realm like it never has before (sorry King, sorry Barker... sorry del Toro, sorry Lovecraft!) or since. Nobody can reach the pointillistic American Gothic of Shirley Jackson.

Death stains all--matter-of-factly--and doesn't comfort but unnerve. Characters in her short tales fill up empty rooms slowly as if with all of their hopes and dreams. Her world is one
Oct 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I checked this out from the library to read only the “unfinished novel” and the few pieces that aren’t included in other collections.

The unfinished work, “Come Along With Me,” is about thirty pages long and reads more like one of Jackson's short stories than one of her novels. It shares the theme of escape, or attempted escape, from domestic life with some of her earlier works; but the first-person narrator seems to be of a different type, an unabashedly “big” (in more ways than one) middle-aged
Dec 15, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2011
If I had to pick a favorite short story from this book I'd say all of them. All of the short stories wedged their creepy little fingers way back into my head and seem to have gotten a pretty good hold back there. Like I said in my update... Ms Jackson has this things about houses that just makes me fear these structures now. She makes me believe that houses are alive, breathing, and sometimes sinister things. I look for changes in my house. I listen to what it says. When I leave my house I lock ...more
Michael Jandrok
Nov 20, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Somewhere among the musty, dusty memories of my childhood is the day that my mother gave me access to her bruised but well-loved paperback copy of “The Haunting of Hill House.” You have to understand that I was a precocious reader for a youngster, and my mother was not averse to letting me read books or stories that were well beyond my grade level in school, especially if she thought they were genuine pieces of literature that I would benefit from absorbing. I was also by this time noodling ...more
Robin Bonne
Included in this collection is the story, ‘Louisa, Please Come Home,’ which is one of my all time favorite short stories.
Apr 07, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Rhonda, Belinda
Thinking this was an actual novel, I was surprised when I started to find it was actually a compilation of an unfinished novel (only a taste of what had been completed before Shirley Jackson's death), 16 stories, and three essays. The title unfinished novel is heartbreaking in the sense that the first three chapters are wonderful, and it would have been nice had she been able to go as far with the novel as she had wanted. The short stories are classic Jackson - I had forgotten that prior to ...more
Dec 07, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories
When Jackson writes about hauntings or murders you can pretend that you are reading about the unusual. You don't have that luxury with these short stories. Here the quotidian cruelties, the pettiness, the dishonesty and selfishness of ordinary people are not softened by the distracting gloss of insanity and horror.
Eli Easton
Feb 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm doing a lifetime book challenge where you read one book from each year since you were born. I chose this book for 1968 because I wanted to include a Shirley Jackson and the rest of her books were published before I was born. This collection was released posthumously. As for her previously work, I can highly recommend "The Haunting of Hill House", "We Have Always Lived in the Castle", and "The Lottery and Other Stories".

This volume is a mishmash collection including some lectures/essays, a
Dec 12, 2017 rated it liked it
These stories are mixed. Some of them, like the grippe one, are funny. Family funny.

But others are so close to a psychosis perception that they are chilling. When meant to be just descriptive event or period or place scenarios? Or not. One day on a bus, or conversations with the boardinghouse lady etc. Remembering a day with a friend. Husband or nanny known nostalgia. And most of those are bordering on not just supernatural or "medium seer" skills but clearly dwell too in hallucination
Oct 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: short-stories
A short story collection published posthumously by Shirley Jackson's husband. The title story, Come Along With Me, is apparently the initial few chapters of a novel left uncompleted. The concept of the story captivated me. It is by far the strongest element of the collection. A middleaged, devoted, farm wife is suddenly widowed. She opts to sell/cash out absolutely everything she owns and sets off with no destination in mind, no plans. She even abandons her name. Everything from there on is ...more
Feb 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Be careful when someone invites you to their house during the summer holidays.
Jim C
Dec 20, 2017 rated it liked it
This is a collection of short stories that include an unfinished story because of her death, her most famous story, and lectures where she describes her career.

It seems like whenever I read an anthology my rating always ends up being a three star rating. I like some stories and some I do not. This was my introduction to this writer and I don't think she is for me. She does a terrific job with the atmosphere and being cryptic. But therein lies the problem too. It was a little too cryptic for my
Lee Anne
Apr 27, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorite-author
This posthumous collection starts with the title story, which is the beginning of the novel Jackson was working on when she died. If there is a heaven, and I get to go there, and Shirley Jackson is there, one of the first things I will do is find her and have her tell me what happens next. Breathtakingly brilliant.

Following that, there are fourteen previously uncollected stories, all great. The best way I can describe them to the uninitiated is to have you imagine the world of "Mad Men," all
Sep 26, 2011 rated it liked it
I love Shirley Jackson's horror. But her realism? ..

Reading these stories and essays felt a little like watching the director commentary on Edward Scissorhands. It's a favorite of mine, so I'd been looking forward to it. I had anticipated fascinating insights into narrative structure, film technology, Edward's psyche, and the subtle art of evoking an honest performance. What I got was Tim Burton whining about the suburbs for an hour and 45 minutes.

This was, more or less, the same thing.

But her
Apr 01, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not her best collection of short stories but they're ok, it's still Shirley.
Melanie (Perpetually Reading)
I’ve always been a fan of Shirley Jackson’s book “We Have Always Lived in the Castle” and have read “The Lottery” about 20 times already, so it comes to no surprise that after a long hiatus, this short story collection made me excited to be reading again. As always, I loved the creepy, gothic vibes and I loved the characters in each story. My favorite short story was definitely ‘A Visit’, which at the last sentence had me flip right back to the beginning to read over a second time in the same ...more
Christian V
Aug 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This collection of shorts stories and essays by Shirley Jackson, compiled by her husband, is a dark gem. I've read most of her other collection, The Lottery and Other Stories, but in my opinion this volume is more penetrating. (Vague spoiler ahead)
There is a story in this book called The Rock, so named by Jackson's husband who found the story untitled in one of her boxes of papers she never had published and presumably didn't plan to have published. And it is one of the most unsettling few
Anne Sanow
Feb 13, 2008 rated it really liked it
Rather a hodgepodge of a collection, what with the unfinished novel (the title story), a handful of other stories (some previously published, some not), and three lectures. The lecture "Biography of a Story" is backstory on Jackson's most famous tale, "The Lottery"--the public uproar and crazy letters demanding an explanation are fascinating, and give pause to the notion that Americans were better read 50 years ago. Some story standouts: Jackson's
trademark small-town paranoia is on display in
Steve Duffy
Aug 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Not many authors can give me the unfailing sentence-by-sentence pleasure I get from the writing of Shirley Jackson. My only hesitation in reading this unfinished fragment of a novel was that I knew I'd be caught up in her genius, only to be dumped back into the world after a mere thirty pages or so, but those pages were more than worth it. This book also contains a smart, representative selection of Ms Jackson's short fiction and a handful of her excellent essays. Buy it without hesitation, and ...more
Apr 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Come Along With Me has a couple of interesting moments but very much feels like an unfinished fragment of a longer work. The short stories in this volume are great, as good if not better than those collected in The Lottery ('The Summer People', ''The Beautiful Stranger' and 'Louisa, Please Come Home' were my favourites).

The three lectures that close the volume are humourous but also very insightful - covering an author's favourite question, "where do you get your ideas from?", the outrage and
Apr 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
I really do enjoy the way Ms. Jackson writes. She can take the most ordinary event and make it interesting just by her descriptions. Unfortunately, I don't always understand her stories, but they certainly give me something to think about. My favorite part of this book is the last section entitled, "Three lectures, with Two Stories". In this section, Ms. Jackson gives great advice to any aspiring writer and makes the story associated with the lecture even more interesting to read.
Jul 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
(I'd give it 3.5... maybe 3.75, so I'll round it up. However, though I liked some parts quite a bit, I don't think I can honestly say that I "really liked" the whole thing, over all...)

Shirley Jackson's unique style shines through here-- more so in some pieces than others. My favorites from this collection would probably be Come Along With Me (though of course it's unfinished), "The Summer People" (though I skipped it this time, as I'd read it fairly recently), "A Visit", "The Rock", "A Day in
Jan 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
4.5 stars rounded up.
I love short stories and I love Shirley Jackson. This collection of short stories was no disappointment. As odd and queer as I anticipated published posthumously with a couple lectures towards the end. In the foreword, Laura Miller writes “The impression that menace lurks in life’s most familiar precincts, that intimate relations are filled with mortal peril, is the defining mood in the stories collected here.” She also wrote, “The twentieth century’s great art of
*He looked at me; I must say I like it better when they look at you; a lot of the time people seem to be scared of finding out that other people have real faces, as though if you looked at a stranger clearly and honestly and with both eyes you might find yourself learning something you didn’t actually want to know.
*There is a kind of controlled madness to streetcars; they swing along as though they haven’t quite come to terms with tracks yet, and haven’t really decided whether tracks are here to
Scout Maria
May 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a shame Shirley Jackson wasn't able to finish the novel Come Along with Me... it had all the makings of a great book. Love the very beginning of Angela traveling to her new life, basically the happy twin to Nell's drive in Haunting of Hill House.

Favorites from this collection: Come Along with Me, Island, A Visit, Louisa Please Come Home, The Night We All Had Grippe, and Notes for a Young Writer
Karen Heuler
Nov 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
I liked just about everything, but didn't love it, generally speaking. There were things that interested me a lot--how houses figured prominently in her descriptions and her moods, the lovely backstory on the house in Hill House and how ghosts seemed to be pushing her to write it. But generally speaking, the collection just struck me as interesting and not great.
Beth Lind
Sep 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
I do love all of Shirley Jackson’s work!
Aug 19, 2007 rated it really liked it
This is a fascinating book. I've read most of Shirley Jackson's short stories at this point, I think -- anyway, those in the collections called _Just An Ordinary Day_ and _The Lottery_, as well as this one -- and I have to say that, although those collected in _The Lottery_ are presumably the most famous, I found stories in the other two collections that struck me more deeply and will stay with me longer than the perhaps more "polished" work in _The Lottery_.

Standout stories for me in this
Mar 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Like pretty much every other reader of English language books on the planet, I'd already read and enjoyed Jackson's story "The Lottery." Reading this book I'm almost positive I've read most or all of these stories before, but I wouldn't be surprised if they just felt that way. Jackson's writing is crisp and eerie, uncanny and unsettling. The stories all feel like highly-crafted ghost stories, though not all involve ghosts. I enjoyed the unfinished novel excerpt the book starts with. The main ...more
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Shirley Jackson was an influential American author. A popular writer in her time, her work has received increasing attention from literary critics in recent years. She has influenced such writers as Stephen King, Nigel Kneale, and Richard Matheson.

She is best known for her dystopian short story, "The Lottery" (1948), which suggests there is a deeply unsettling underside to bucolic, smalltown
“In the country of the story the writer is king.” 21 likes
“I have always been interested in witchcraft and superstition, but have never had much traffic with ghosts, so I began asking people everywhere what they thought about such things, and I began to find out that there was one common factor - most people have never seen a ghost, and never want or expect to, but almost everyone will admit that sometimes they have a sneaking feeling that they just possibly could meet a ghost if they weren't careful - if they were to turn a corner too suddenly, perhaps, or open their eyes too soon when they wake up at night, or go into a dark room without hesitating first.” 16 likes
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