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Hell House Paperback – October 13, 1999
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About the Author
Richard Matheson was The New York Times bestselling author of I Am Legend, Hell House, Somewhere in Time, The Incredible Shrinking Man, A Stir of Echoes, The Beardless Warriors, The Path, Seven Steps to Midnight, Now You See It…, and What Dreams May Come, among others. He was named a Grand Master of Horror by the World Horror Convention, and received the Bram Stoker Award for Lifetime Achievement. He has also won the Edgar, the Spur, and the Writer's Guild awards. In 2010, he was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame. In addition to his novels Matheson wrote several screenplays for movies and TV, including "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet," based on his short story, along with several other Twilight Zone episodes. He was born in New Jersey and raised in Brooklyn, and fought in the infantry in World War II. He earned his bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Missouri. Matheson died in June, 2013, at the age of eighty-seven.
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Top Customer Reviews
I started out by reading "I am Legend", which is one of the best horror stories ever written, so I was expecting a little less from this. And, it isn't as good as "I am Legend", but then again, not much is. I am on a crusade now to get all of my horror-loving friends and family to read Matheson - it seems his work has been virtually buried by the enormous amount of really bad horror that seemed to spring up in Stephen King's wake (which isn't King's fault...publishers just started seeing dollar signs...). Matheson is a rarity in the field of horror - he's classic.
"Hell House" is a fast read. Each chapter consists of one day, and the chapters are broken down into little sections (7:08pm, 1:39 am, etc.) that keep the pace quick, and make it very easy for you to say, "Oh, I guess I can squeeze in just a little more before turning out the light." (Or at least going to sleep!) The writing is snappy, and to the point. Matheson creates vivid, cinematic images without having the writing call too much attention to itself. Surely this is a skill he perfected while writing for "The Twilight Zone".
"Hell House" has enough twists and turns to satisfy, and enough really scary, disgusting stuff to possibly haunt your dreams. I found myself having to think happy thoughts as I closed my eyes at night. I haven't had to do that in a while...not since reading "It" by Stephen King as a kid.
Fellow horror fans, you really ought to do yourselves a favor and read this book (and all of his others, too!). And remember, if anything seems familiar -- like it's been done before -- then it was probably lifted from this!
Wonderfully realized and darkly imaginative, "Hell House" is a simple tale of four unluckly folks hired to crack the legend of Hell House, an isolated mansion in Maine with a history as dark as the Manson Family at Spahn Ranch. Once owned by a Mr. Belasco, the house was an early 20th century hangout of deviant folks who explored carnal avenues to the ultimate point of starvation and death. Two previous expeditions of scientists ended in suicide and disaster, and our modern-day protagonists, needless-to-say, have their work cut out for them.
By novel's end, each character must come to terms with their own human weaknesses and repressions, exposed by the overwhelming evil of Hell House. Matheson's novel is brilliant because it brings a sexual awareness to the genre only flirted with in the past. The house, in many ways, is a prison with windows bricked over, nestled uncomfortably in an isolated, fog-covered valley. Matheson's characters are painfully alone, battling forces psycologically and eventually physically.Read more ›
So would you like this book? Picture this. There is a house where only one person has survived living beneath its roof in over 30 years. Four people return (a physicist, his wife, and 2 mediums); with a reward of 100,000 to see if they can get rid of the "hauntings" at Hell House. The physicists, Lionel, insists that there are no such things as ghost; that paranormal occurrences are a natural part of the world created by electromagnetic forces rather than the dead. The spiritualist, Florence, argues that the phenomenon's are a result of trapped and torments spirits which she has the power to relinquish from their prison. The mystery emerges as the debate of the force behind the phantoms grows. Will any of these four survive to solve the mystery of Hell House and if they do did they really learn the truth or just what the house wanted them to learn?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Extremely vulgar. I was embarassed to read it and threw it away before I finished it.Published 9 days ago by Elaine Milliren
Characters are completely unlikable. I struggled through the entire thing. Do NOT waste your time.Published 1 month ago by Kindle Customer
This has to be the best horror story I have ever read. I love this book. If you love horror stories, do yourself a favor and read this one. It's incredible.Published 1 month ago by Laura
Though it is a quick read I do admit there are parts that drag just somewhat even for the quickness of it that being said there are some parts I couldn't read fast enough. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Deborah S. Eden