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Eleanor Vance has always been a loner--shy, vulnerable, and bitterly resentful of the 11 years she lost while nursing her dying mother. "She had spent so long alone, with no one to love, that it was difficult for her to talk, even casually, to another person without self-consciousness and an awkward inability to find words." Eleanor has always sensed that one day something big would happen, and one day it does. She receives an unusual invitation from Dr. John Montague, a man fascinated by "supernatural manifestations." He organizes a ghost watch, inviting people who have been touched by otherworldly events. A paranormal incident from Eleanor's childhood qualifies her to be a part of Montague's bizarre study--along with headstrong Theodora, his assistant, and Luke, a well-to-do aristocrat. They meet at Hill House--a notorious estate in New England.
Hill House is a foreboding structure of towers, buttresses, Gothic spires, gargoyles, strange angles, and rooms within rooms--a place "without kindness, never meant to be lived in...."
Although Eleanor's initial reaction is to flee, the house has a mesmerizing effect, and she begins to feel a strange kind of bliss that entices her to stay. Eleanor is a magnet for the supernatural--she hears deathly wails, feels terrible chills, and sees ghostly apparitions. Once again she feels isolated and alone--neither Theo nor Luke attract so much eerie company. But the physical horror of Hill House is always subtle; more disturbing is the emotional torment Eleanor endures. Intense, literary, and harrowing, The Haunting of Hill House belongs in the same dark league as Henry James's classic ghost story, The Turn of the Screw. --Naomi Gesinger
The Haunting of Hill House is recommended for anyone who loves a good, creepy, psychological ghost story.
There were a couple of things I didn't like about the book: The dialogue isn't always realistic and the characters seem to laugh and smile at very odd moments.
Now it may have just been because I was reading it in the middle of the night, but for me this book is more frightening than any story I've ever read before.
I really can't add add anything new here. I just love the book and wanted to leave it a five star review.Published 9 hours ago by T. Dreiling
This book was pretty interesting (in a good way). It wasn't really scary, just weird. What I found the most interesting was learning about the house. Read morePublished 3 days ago by Ashley
It's not the book I'm critiquing. I was disappointed in the "sample." It's not actually a sample of the story but the introduction to the book. Read morePublished 3 days ago by Lois S. Piland
The book was only a little scary in a couple of places. All the dialog and chit-chat was a little tiresome as was Eleanor's emotional issues. Read morePublished 5 days ago by Sue
Because I have always wanted to read this gothic classic, I joined The Haunting of Hill House Readalong hosted by The Estella Society.
Dr. Read more
This was truly a masterpiece, though I felt the ending was a bit odd and drew on too long in some places and cut things short in others. All in all exceptionally scary to read!Published 7 days ago by Natalie Thaddeus
The Haunting Of Hill House (1959) by Shirley Jackson. A true American classic ghost story. It was made into a classic movie called The Haunting (1963), starring Richard Johnson,... Read morePublished 9 days ago by Joker