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Or so she believes. But at last the magic fails. A stranger arrives--cousin Charles, with his eye on the Blackwood fortune. He disturbs the sisters' careful habits, installing himself at the head of the family table, unearthing Merricat's treasures, talking privately to Constance about "normal lives" and "boy friends." Unable to drive him away by either polite or occult means, Merricat adopts more desperate methods. The result is crisis and tragedy, the revelation of a terrible secret, the convergence of the villagers upon the house, and a spectacular unleashing of collective spite.
The sisters are propelled further into seclusion and solipsism, abandoning "time and the orderly pattern of our old days" in favor of an ever-narrowing circuit of ritual and shadow. They have themselves become talismans, to be alternately demonized and propitiated, darkly, with gifts. Jackson's novel emerges less as a study in eccentricity and more--like some of her other fictions--as a powerful critique of the anxious, ruthless processes involved in the maintenance of normality itself. "Poor strangers," says Merricat contentedly at last, studying trespassers from the darkness behind the barricaded Blackwood windows. "They have so much to be afraid of." --Sarah Waters --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
This was a fun read and I had trouble putting the story down. I think there may have been a few things that I didn't quite get, but I bet some research will help me with thatPublished 14 hours ago by Marie
This book was recommended to me when I crowdsourced recommendations for scary books. I knew Jackson only from her short story, The Lottery, which I read in high school and greatly... Read morePublished 1 day ago by AJ.
Very awesome story with just the right hints of creepiness and outsider syndrome.Published 3 days ago by P. Li
Haunting, affective, one that will stay with you long after finishing. Simply one of the best books I've ever read.Published 7 days ago by tararella
The writing is beautiful and the story is completely unique! This is not a book you fly through--this is a book you read slowly and savor, giving you time to take in all it has to... Read morePublished 8 days ago by Amazon Customer
Lovely queer story about a very peculiar family. I love The Lottery and this book was just as strange and wonderful as that story.Published 9 days ago by Amy Thibodeau
I think I’m going to need several days to think about this slim volume.
A mob has no impulse control. Read more
Disappointed... This was my first encounter with a novel by Shirley Jackson. I have read "The Lottery," (like pretty much everyone else) and enjoyed it. Read morePublished 13 days ago by Brian Donovan