The Haunting of Hill House

The Haunting of Hill House

by Shirley Jackson
3.9 114

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The Haunting of Hill House 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 115 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought this was a wonderful book, but much of it is very subtle. I found myself feeling sorry for the main character (Eleanor), rather than frightened for her. Her story is a very sad one, and often, it was her character that kept me interested, not the plot itself. The ending leaves many questions about the character of Eleanor and the events at Hill House, but they are questions that are better left unanswered. I was also surprised at the amount of humor in the book. Much of the dialogue between characters was actually funny and it was refreshing amongst the dark nature of the story itself. I came across The Haunting of Hill House after reading Richard Matheson's Hell House, which has a very similar plot (even a similar name). However, Matheson's novel is much more graphic and overall more frightening, I would say. Although I did not find The Haunting of Hill House especially scary, its characters drew me in and made for a very enjoyable read. I highly recommend it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you like this book and have never seen the original movie from the sixties, you are in for a treat. It is played on AMC and TCM periodically, and it is nothing and I do mean NOTHING like the remake with Catherine Zeta Jones. That was an abomination. The original movie is very true to the book. Just creepy from beginning to end. The book, however, remains the gold standard in the genre in my opinion. If you read only one ghost story in your lifetime, let this be the one. No gore, no blood, no need for it. Boo!
smp315 More than 1 year ago
I read this as a teenager after reading Ms. Jackson's classic short story, "The Lottery"(which I loved) in the seventh grade. It is superbly written, but one must remember from a more subtle era. We have become accustomed to a more "in your face" type of fright today. It's good to go back every once in a while and read literature that spawned interest in a genre. For an updated, fresh story about a haunted house I suggest "The Supernaturals" by NY Times bestselling author David Golemon (Event Group Series). A Ghosthuners type TV show plans a live broadcast on Halloween night from a house with an evil past. It's clever, well-paced, creepy and even pays homage to this wonderful tale.
Victoria Sazani More than 1 year ago
This book is a perfect ghost story. Jackson had the ability to create fear just by the way her characters and environment interact. Subtle horror permeates even the most mundane moments. I have never yet been able to find a more perfect first paragraph for a book about a haunted house. This story is flawless which is why this book has served as a template for so many other books and movies. Classy
angelosdaughter More than 1 year ago
I love this book and reread it at least once year. The terror is understated and leaves a lot to the imagination, which makes it even more effective. Ir ia left up to your imagination what is behind the manifestations at Hill House. Is the house evil or are the manifestations caused by one or more of the participants? The chilling atmosphere is relieved by the arrival of Mrs. Montague and Arthur, a headmaster and friend of the Montagues. The busybody know it all self-styled sensitive Mrs. Montague with her ouija board and the headmaster, Arthur, are only two people who seem to be immune to sensing the presences in the house and provide comic relief. This is the quintessential ghost story and a great read. The old black and white movie starring Julie Harris and Clare Bloom is wonderful; its only flaw was the omission of Arthur and the reduction of the character of Mrs. Montague to little more than a walk-on. I have seen a play based on the book; it has the same flaw. As someone else stated, the remake with Catherine Zeta-Jones is an abomination, sharing little but the title with the book. The only thing that can be said for it is that it did have some impressive special effects, none of which was based on events in the book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you like to imagine-really imagine-while you read, this is a great book for it. You can almost hear the sounds, see the scenes, almost draw the floor plan of the Hill House. In some passages, you can also experience a chill sensation in your back. Its 100% terror. Smart terror.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this book many years ago after seeing the original black and white film "The Haunting". The horror is subtle which is so much better than graphic gore. I highly recommend this book as well as the original movie. Prepare to be scared. This is horror at its purest.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I disagree with the lengthy review of my dear daughter, Julie. This is the scariest book I have ever read, and I, too, have read my fair share of horror stories. I first read it when I was about 15 and made sure I was not alone in the house when I did. I have read it about a dozen times since and still only read it when my husband is home. Trust me, if my daughter woke in the dead of night , alone in her bed, to what sounded like a sledgehammer banging on her door or found all of her clothes inexplicably covered in blood, she would experience much more than goosebumps. Especially if she were alone in a house far from town in the night where no one could here her because no one would come any closer. "Whatever walks there walks alone."
Nightmare_Lord More than 1 year ago
Amazing
mgoodrich718 More than 1 year ago
The Haunting Of Hill House By Shirley Jackson<br /> <br /> 4 Stars<br /> <br /> The Haunting Of Hill House is a classic horror story. The story begins with Dr. Montague who is a scholar of the occult wanting to have final evidence of a true haunting. He gathers information looking for the perfect people to help him. He rents Hill House for the summer. A house with a tragic past that the town it sits in won't even discuss. The house sits all alone and began it's life tragically when 80 years prior Hugh Crain built the house for his wife who died moments before even reaching it. The tragedies continue from there and no one that has lived there has for very long. Dr.Montague invites his assistant Theodora, Luke the future heir of the house and Eleanor a complicated young women who has had experience with the occult to stay with him. The story moves quickly and many things happen to it's guests. The house is powerful and it's goal is to keep it's inhabitants off kilter at all times. It builds power and takes what it wants for it's own.<br /> <br /> This was a genuinely creepy story. It's one that you really should read sitting in the dark of night. The subtlety of the horror is what I loved most. Horror novels usually do not phase me but this one did. If it touches me and gives me pause then it is definitely good. The characters all had their flaws that were exposed while there. The doctor does not know what he has really done until it's too late. I am glad that I finally picked this up and it will be with me for a long while.
Ophelia52 More than 1 year ago
If your sensibilities have been shaped by video, you will probably not like this. If you are sensitive to nuances of language and atmosphere and skilled at turning text into a waking dream, this will chill you to the bone.
Anonymous 7 days ago
A good quick horror read that pulls you in fast and delivers on all fronts.
Anonymous 14 days ago
Good book.
ksprings 17 days ago
This review was first published on Kurt's Frontier. Synopsis: Dr. Montague is an occult scholar looking for evidence of a haunting. He picks three people for his team. Eleanor is a fragile young woman well acquainted with poltergeists. Theodora is his cheerful assistant. Luke is the future heir of Hill House and is present to represent his family. What is intended as a spooky encounter with inexplicable phenomena will soon become far more than they imagine. Cold spots, closing doors, and knocking will take a sinister turn. Hill House will choose one to make its own. Review: Shirley Jackson published The Haunting of Hill House in 1959. There is a trace of insanity in the writing to mirror the insanity of the house. Dr. Montague, who arranged the investigation, notes that the angles of the house are all intentionally slightly off. The investigation starts off innocently enough with doors never staying closed. The next night there is a strange dog and knocking on the wall. From there the encounters get more disturbing. What is more, they seem to be focusing on Eleanor. I found the setting intriguing and the events had potential. It mixes the genres of horror with psychological thriller, mapping a descent into madness. The dialog was typical for the writing of the era in which Shirley Jackson wrote. Though the artistic nature was well crafted, it was hard to follow in places. Never-the-less, while not as spooky as it could be, it was a fun All Hallows Eve read.
Anonymous 3 months ago
Read it 30 years ago still a good read. Classic .
Sandy5 3 months ago
I thought this novel was different. It left me wanting for more. I wanted their time inside the mansion to be longer, I wanted more information and details and I wanted to know what happened to the characters as they left. I liked how the story developed and the characters, there wasn’t much deviation from the main story line. The description of the mansion was creative and intriguing. I thought Mrs. Montague was the star of the novel yet she drove me crazy with her bossiness and her authoritative nature. I felt sorry for Mr. Montague for having to be married to her yet I could see how he needs her. Mrs. Dudley was hilarious and I thought there was something sinister about her. She seemed too much in control and too rigid to be a normal individual. Mr. Montague’s assistants were not what I had expected. I think I was trying to compare them to individuals I see on TV series and here were these two woman who went about paranormal activity differently. It was an interesting read and I can see why it is a classic.
Anonymous 8 months ago
Have always been a fan every since I read the lottery in high school. I like the movie a lot but I love the novel ??
Anonymous 9 months ago
Suspense that builds! Truly terrorizing!
Anonymous 10 months ago
Author: You have the makings of a good writer. Take this story and give it different endings. Have more action, near death experiences, etc.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have heard of this book for forever and am an avid reader of everything. I have seen the movie and was surprised at the liberties they took with that after reading the book. I have to say im not surprised that they had to do that after finding how scary this book is NOT, in any way. Even as a "psychological" thriller. I thought it was just a sad story about Eleanor. There is so much left out of the story, that it doesn't even make much sense. I was very disapponted because i had heard so much about it and all the "scary book" lists have it on and it is far from it. If you want to read scary, read "IT" or "Salem's Lot". I am not scared easily, but i had to put these books down at times because i got so freaked out! To each their own, i guess, when it comes to this one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Grest Halloween read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
JimRGill2012 More than 1 year ago
Jackson&rsquo;s novel, often hailed as a classic of horror fiction, seems decidedly quaint by current horror standards. While all of the fundamental elements of a haunted house tale feature prominently in this novel&mdash;an ill-fated history of death, suicide, and family intrigue, mysterious and unexplained noises, dark passages and an architectural design that appear to defy logic, a remote and isolated locale, strangers assembled to survive in the house cut off from the outside world&mdash;the horror (or more precisely, the terror) that occurs in this story is almost too subtle and too muted. The title of the story might provide some clue regarding the nature of this tale. Note that the title implies that what occurs in this tale is a &ldquo;haunting&rdquo;&mdash;it does not seem to imply that Hill House *is* haunted but rather that what transpires in the novel is a *haunting.* The main character, Eleanor&mdash;an inscrutably lonely romantic prone to imaginative flights of fancy&mdash;might very well be the agent of the haunting. That is, rather than the house haunting the characters, in this story, the characters (or rather, the main character) could be haunting the house, as the title implies. Read this one for the restrained suspense of Jackson&rsquo;s writing and its value as a cornerstone of the genre, but temper your expectations of spine-tingling frights and sleepless nights.