Shirley Jackson is an American
literary master, whose stories point to horror found in everyday
society, from subtle cruelty to violence cloaked in tradition, and
interwoven throughout is the struggle to keep sane. The Haunting of Hill House
is the quintessential narrative, but really, it’s about Eleanor, and
how evil feeds off the vulnerable. The new Netflix series inspired by
Jackson’s classic releases this month, and I’ll be sure to take a few
peeks, from behind my hands.
I learned about Thomas Ligotti’s
writings and influence from the commentaries at the end of Season 1
Detective, and was drawn to Ligotti’s unsettling early
short stories. Now, readers can delve into the philosophy of horror
from which Ligotti writes, drawing from literature, neuroscience and
other fields of study. Not for the faint-hearted, his is a thoughtful
though despairing viewpoint of the nightmare of our reality.
For the first time in Penguin
Classics we have published the original 1818 text, and our edition
includes an introduction by acclaimed biographer Charlotte Gordon,
who provides additional literary texts to provide a fuller view of
Mary Shelley’s life and world. For her powerful introduction alone,
this is a very special edition, and readers won’t help thinking about
the monsters of our own creation.