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Shirley Jackson'sThe Haunting of Hill Househas unnerved readers since its original publication in 1959. A tale of subtle, psychological terror, it has earned its place as one of the significant haunted house stories of the ages.

Eleanor Vance has always been a loner--shy, vulnerable, and bitterly resentful of the 11 years she lost while nursing her dying mother. "She had spent so long alone, with no one to love, that it was difficult for her to talk, even casually, to another person without self-consciousness and an awkward inability to find words." Eleanor has always sensed that one day something big would happen, and one day it does. She receives an unusual invitation from Dr. John Montague, a man fascinated by "supernatural manifestations." He organizes a ghost watch, inviting people who have been touched by otherworldly events. A paranormal incident from Eleanor's childhood qualifies her to be a part of Montague's bizarre study--along with headstrong Theodora, his assistant, and Luke, a well-to-do aristocrat. They meet at Hill House--a notorious estate in New England.

Hill House is a foreboding structure of towers, buttresses, Gothic spires, gargoyles, strange angles, and rooms within rooms--a place "without kindness, never meant to be lived in...."

Although Eleanor's initial reaction is to flee, the house has a mesmerizing effect, and she begins to feel a strange kind of bliss that entices her to stay. Eleanor is a magnet for the supernatural--she hears deathly wails, feels terrible chills, and sees ghostly apparitions. Once again she feels isolated and alone--neither Theo nor Luke attract so much eerie company. But the physical horror of Hill House is always subtle; more disturbing is the emotional torment Eleanor endures. Intense, literary, and harrowing, The Haunting of Hill House belongs in the same dark league as Henry James's classic ghost story, The Turn of the Screw. --Naomi Gesinger --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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ISBN-10:  0143039989
ISBN-13:  978-0143039983
Author:  Shirley Jackson
Genre:  Literature & Fiction
Publisher:  Penguin Classics
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review by . November 18, 2012
"No live organism can continue for long to exist sanely under conditions of absolute reality; even larks and katydids are supposed, by some, to dream." - Shirley Jackson, The Haunting of Hill House       If you - like me, like Jackson, like many others - have become aware of life's padding - those cushions of little fantasies we place around our minds to make existence bearable -, if you have sensed the presence of a looming irrationality and feared the insanity …
review by . August 18, 2007
The rich character development in this stunning story drips off the pages like the sweetest nectar as the reader is teleported into a gut wrenching, eerie tale of a forlorn house looking for new blood.     When doctor Montague decides to stay at a very famous haunted house he doesn't wants to go alone. For the ride he picks three people who have tempted fate with strange happenings in hopes of bring the house to life with the sensitive receptors they might poses. He invites Luke, …
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The Haunting of Hill House
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