October is #WickedGoodReads Month here at Outlandish Lit and GXO. And it's the last week and my last post! Today's topic: scary short stories (see the full list of discussion topics here).
SONGS OF A DEAD DREAMER BY THOMAS LIGOTTI
This is by far one of the best collections of supernatural horror that I've ever read. It does not at all feel like a contemporary read, so prepare yourself for that. Once you get used to his style, you can fully appreciate the scares and disturbing plots he has created.
Songs of a Dreamer was Thomas Ligotti’s first collection of supernatural horror stories. When originally published in 1985 by Harry Morris’s Silver Scarab Press, the book was hardly noticed. In 1989, an expanded version appeared that garnered accolades from several quarters. Writing in the Washington Post, the celebrated science fiction and fantasy author Michael Swanwick extolled: “Put this volume on the shelf right between H. P. Lovecraft and Edgar Allan Poe. Where it belongs.”
THE LOTTERY AND OTHER STORIES BY SHIRLEY JACKSON
Honestly, everything Shirley Jackson writes is amazing. If you didn't have to read The Lottery in school, READ IT NOW. Another horrifying story I love (I don't know if it's in this particular collection) is The Summer People, so google that.
The Lottery, one of the most terrifying stories written in this century, created a sensation when it was first published in The New Yorker. "Power and haunting," and "nights of unrest" were typical reader responses. This collection, the only one to appear during Shirley Jackson's lifetime, unites "The Lottery:" with twenty-four equally unusual stories. Together they demonstrate Jackson's remarkable range--from the hilarious to the truly horrible--and power as a storyteller.
THREE MOMENTS OF AN EXPLOSION BY CHINA MIEVILLE
I didn't love this collection, but I do love China Mieville. He's one of the most original minds in fiction/genre fiction today. It would be a mistake not to mention this book, just because it has a few of the scariest short stories I have ever read: The Condition of New Death, In The Slopes, Sacken.
London awakes one morning to find itself besieged by a sky full of floating icebergs. Destroyed oil rigs, mysteriously reborn, clamber from the sea and onto the land, driven by an obscure but violent purpose. An anatomy student cuts open a cadaver to discover impossibly intricate designs carved into a corpse's bones—designs clearly present from birth, bearing mute testimony to . . . what?
What are your favorite scary short story collections? I need more in my life!
That's it for #wickedgoodreads! I hope you enjoyed it and read a ton of scary books this month.