The Elementals

The Elementals

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"The finest writer of paperback originals in America." - Stephen King

"Surely one of the most terrifying novels ever written." - Poppy Z. Brite

"Beyond any trace of doubt, one of the best writers of horror in this or any other country." - Peter Straub

"Readers of weak constitution should beware!" - Publishers Weekly

"McDowell has a flair for the gruesome." - Washington Post

After a bizarre and disturbing incident at the funeral of matriarch Marian Savage, the McCray and Savage families look forward to a restful and relaxing summer at Beldame, on Alabama's Gulf Coast, where three Victorian houses loom over the shimmering beach. Two of the houses are habitable, while the third is slowly and mysteriously being buried beneath an enormous dune of blindingly white sand. But though long uninhabited, the third house is not empty. Inside, something deadly lies in wait. Something that has terrified Dauphin Savage and Luker McCray since they were boys and which still haunts their nightmares. Something horrific that may be responsible for several terrible and unexplained deaths years earlier - and is now ready to kill again . . .

A haunted house story unlike any other, Michael McDowell's The Elementals (1981) was one of the finest novels to come out of the horror publishing explosion of the 1970s and '80s. Though best known for his screenplays for Tim Burton's Beetlejuice and The Nightmare Before Christmas, McDowell is now being rediscovered as one of the best modern horror writers and a master of Southern Gothic literature. This edition of McDowell's masterpiece of terror features a new introduction by award-winning horror author Michael Rowe. McDowell's first novel, the grisly and darkly comic The Amulet (1979), is also available from Valancourt Books.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781941147177
Publisher: Valancourt Books
Publication date: 06/17/2014
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 230
Sales rank: 53,547
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.70(d)

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Elementals 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book starts out with one wild funeral which had me gasping as I was reading. The story then slows down a bit giving you past and present family history of the McCrays & Savages two Mobile Alabama families who's vacation homes are beautifully placed for an escape but hauntingly creepy. McDowell writes such vivid descriptions that you find yourself right in Beldame. I did enjoy the New York/ Southern banter between the family at times was humorous. The creepy factor in this book built up for one hell of an ending. This is a good creepy Halloween quick read perfect for this time of year!??
WingedWolf on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Well-written, tremendously creepy--one of the best 'ghost stories' of all time.
ottomaniac on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Consistently one of my favorite horror novels. I usually re-read it once a year or so. McDowell has a flair for really unsettling imagery - if you read enough of his work, you'll find that quite a bit of it recurs in various forms - and the great Southern gothic atmosphere of a faltering family really shows up his talents well here. It's not perfect, but it's exactly the kind of horror I love: reality's gone wrong and, because natural laws may no longer apply, there's not a lot you can do to combat the forces around you. A great, creepy read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excellent and well worth the read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Read this book when it first came out; didn’t disappoint then and does not now.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is incredibly atmospheric. You practically start sweating as the Alabama summer is described. The writing is superb and brings you right into the moment. It is a slow burn that builds and winds around and hints for 180 pages. Then you fall off a cliff into a terrible fear that grips you until the last page. Incredible writing worth the time of any fan of horror.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is one of the few books to have ever scared me. It was one my mother loved. McDowell could not have done a better job if he wanted to!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love a good, creepy haunting & the Elementals is all that & more
19269684 More than 1 year ago
Good ol' fashioned Southern Dysfunction, with a taste of haunt! The Elementals, by Michael McDowell and narrated by R. C. Bray is a ghostly tale of family, family issues and family land. The author used odd situations, a haunted mansion and people with strange names share a story with dysfunctional, southern flare. I didn't expect to walk away from this book happy, but I did. The Elementals is about the Savage and the McCray families after dealing with the death of their matriach. To recover from their loss (for some it was a good thing), they decided to visit their land, with three beach houses, in Beldame, along the Alabama Gulf Coast. When a grandchild decides to inspect one of the three houses on the property, strange occurrences begin. The third house is known for strange goings-on, but there's something angry in The Third House and it is hostile. First off, let me say: This book is phenom! There are a few dry spots where they have to get into the lives of the characters, but the ghostly hauntings make the story unbelievably real, and very spooky! There's a lot going on, and most of it has to do with Marian Savage's children coping with their dysfunction, but the story in its entirity is written in a style that's both gothic and horrific. I found myself rooted in the story and looking for more- I wanted to peek inside The Third House! The story's only issue (for me) is between Luker and his daugher, India. The girl is thirteen and speaks to her father like he's either a brother or a boyfriend. She drinks and because of her terrible relationship with her father, is disrespectful to other adults. But her character is pivotal to the story, thus making her, and her idiosyncrasies necessary. I have to admit, the story is way good. I can't say it's a classic, but the author is definitely under rated. Check out The Elementals and see for yourself while I move on to the next read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago