Haunting Stories

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Reading and Creating Suspense in the library: DO NOT read alone

At a reading this past weekend, some classic scary stories had participants looking at each other and glancing anxiously around the room. “The Boarded Window” by Ambrose Bierce started off the reading and was followed by Edith Wharton’s “Afterward.” Participants then read some of their favorite and more familiar classics by Edgar Allan Poe, such as “The Tell Tale Heart” and “The Raven.” And of course there are many more stories by Poe and others that will fill your room with horror.

For shorter reads, poetry can offer haunting themes as well. Sylvia Plath’s “Mad Girl’s Love Song” paired with Dylan Thomas’ “Love in the Asylum” is a great way to begin. Some other poems are A. E. Housman’s “Her Strong Enchantment,” Emily Dickinson’s “I Felt a Funeral,” and Edgar Allan Poe’s “Ulalume.”

Let your imagination go this season and find a good read. As Toni Morrison said, “I think of ghosts and haunting as just being alert. If you are really alert, then you see the life that exists beyond the life that is on top.”

****A few reading suggestions from Linderman Library:

The Raven and the Monkey’s Paw: Classics of Horror and Suspense from the Modern Library Classics (call number: 818.4 P743a)

The Haunting of Hill House in the book Haunted Landscapes (call number: 809.9332 H373)

Newer FictionFever Dream by Samanta Schweblin (call number: 868.99 S412nE) and House of Leaves by Mark Danielewski (call number: 818.5 D184h)