• When Things Get Dark: Collection Edited by Ellen Datlow [Pub meeting]

    N.B. this meeting will be held in person in The Prince of Wales pub near Covent Garden. There is also an online session held on Thursday if you are not in London or are not able to attend in person for any other reason.

    We do love Shirley Jackson at Horror Book Club, and got very excited when we heard about this collection of short stories inspired by her writing.

    This is a 380 pages short story collection with 18 stories in it; it will be difficult to discuss all of these in one session so we'd ask people to prioritise the following stories so we all have a common reference for at least part of the discussion:
    - Funeral Birds by M. Rickert
    - For Sale By Owner by Elizabeth Hand
    - In the Deep Woods, the Light is Different There by Seanan McGuire
    - A Hundred Miles and a Mile by Carmen Maria Machado
    - The Party by Paul Tremblay
    - Refinery Road by Stephen Graham Jones
    - Tiptoe by Laird Barron

    Meeting starts at 7pm with drink breaks at 8 and 9. The discussion will end around 10pm but leave whenever you need to.

    Here's the blurb from goodreads.com:

    A collection of new and exclusive short stories inspired by, and in tribute to, Shirley Jackson.

    Shirley Jackson is a seminal writer of horror and mystery fiction, whose legacy resonates globally today. Chilling, human, poignant and strange, her stories have inspired a generation of writers and readers.

    This anthology, edited by legendary horror editor Ellen Datlow, will bring together today’s leading horror writers to offer their own personal tribute to the work of Shirley Jackson.

  • When Things Get Dark: Collection Edited by Ellen Datlow [Online meeting]

    Link visible for attendees

    N.B. this meeting is held online via Zoom. If you want to join us for the in-person discussion, it is held the day before (on Wednesday) in a central London pub.

    We do love Shirley Jackson at Horror Book Club, and got very excited when we heard about this collection of short stories inspired by her writing.

    This is a 380 pages short story collection with 18 stories in it; it will be difficult to discuss all of these in one session so we'd ask people to prioritise the following stories so we all have a common reference for at least part of the discussion:
    - Funeral Birds by M. Rickert
    - For Sale By Owner by Elizabeth Hand
    - In the Deep Woods, the Light is Different There by Seanan McGuire
    - A Hundred Miles and a Mile by Carmen Maria Machado
    - The Party by Paul Tremblay
    - Refinery Road by Stephen Graham Jones
    - Tiptoe by Laird Barron

    Meeting starts at 7pm with drink breaks at 8 and 9. The discussion will end around 10pm but leave whenever you need to.

    Here's the blurb from goodreads.com:

    A collection of new and exclusive short stories inspired by, and in tribute to, Shirley Jackson.

    Shirley Jackson is a seminal writer of horror and mystery fiction, whose legacy resonates globally today. Chilling, human, poignant and strange, her stories have inspired a generation of writers and readers.

    This anthology, edited by legendary horror editor Ellen Datlow, will bring together today’s leading horror writers to offer their own personal tribute to the work of Shirley Jackson.

  • The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell [Pub meeting]

    Prince of Wales

    N.B. this meeting will be held in person in The Prince of Wales pub near Covent Garden. There is also an online session held on Thursday if you are not in London or are not able to attend in person for any other reason.

    There's nothing better than a ghost story to read over the Christmas period and this one has been called a modern classic by many. It won the WHSmith Thumping Good Read Award 2018 - what higher accolade could there be!

    Meeting starts at 7pm with drink breaks at 8 and 9. The discussion will end around 10pm but leave whenever you need to.

    Here's the blurb from goodreads.com:

    When newly widowed Elsie is sent to see out her pregnancy at her late husband's crumbling country estate, The Bridge, what greets her is far from the life of wealth and privilege she was expecting . . .

    When Elsie married handsome young heir Rupert Bainbridge, she believed she was destined for a life of luxury. But with her husband dead just weeks after their marriage, her new servants resentful, and the local villagers actively hostile, Elsie has only her husband's awkward cousin for company. Or so she thinks. Inside her new home lies a locked door, beyond which is a painted wooden figure —a silent companion —-that bears a striking resemblance to Elsie herself. The residents of The Bridge are terrified of the figure, but Elsie tries to shrug this off as simple superstition--that is, until she notices the figure's eyes following her.

    A Victorian ghost story that evokes a most unsettling kind of fear, this is a tale that creeps its way through the consciousness in ways you least expect--much like the silent companions themselves.

  • The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell [Online meeting]

    Link visible for attendees

    N.B. this meeting is held online via Zoom. If you want to join us for the in-person discussion, it is held the day before (on Wednesday) in a central London pub.

    There's nothing better than a ghost story to read over the Christmas period and this one has been called a modern classic by many. It won the WHSmith Thumping Good Read Award 2018 - what higher accolade could there be!

    Meeting starts at 7pm with drink breaks at 8 and 9. The discussion will end around 10pm but leave whenever you need to.

    Here's the blurb from goodreads.com:

    When newly widowed Elsie is sent to see out her pregnancy at her late husband's crumbling country estate, The Bridge, what greets her is far from the life of wealth and privilege she was expecting . . .

    When Elsie married handsome young heir Rupert Bainbridge, she believed she was destined for a life of luxury. But with her husband dead just weeks after their marriage, her new servants resentful, and the local villagers actively hostile, Elsie has only her husband's awkward cousin for company. Or so she thinks. Inside her new home lies a locked door, beyond which is a painted wooden figure —a silent companion —-that bears a striking resemblance to Elsie herself. The residents of The Bridge are terrified of the figure, but Elsie tries to shrug this off as simple superstition--that is, until she notices the figure's eyes following her.

    A Victorian ghost story that evokes a most unsettling kind of fear, this is a tale that creeps its way through the consciousness in ways you least expect--much like the silent companions themselves.

  • Classic HBC - The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor LaValle [Pub meeting]

    N.B. this meeting will be held in person in The Prince of Wales pub near Covent Garden. There is also an online session held on Thursday if you are not in London or are not able to attend in person for any other reason.

    In our first ever Classic Horror Book Club event, we are returning to the Ballad of Black Tom, which we first read in May 2017. It was a hit with us back then, but will it prove just as popular still?

    The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor LaValle is a retelling of the most controversial (read massively racist) of HP Lovercraft's stories, The Horror at Red Hook (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Horror_at_Red_Hook). The novella introduces a new main character, a young black man called Tommy Tester and gives a new perspective on the summoning of the Great Old Ones in 1920s Queens.

    Meeting starts at 7pm with drink breaks at 8 and 9. The discussion will end around 10pm but leave whenever you need to.

    Here's the blurb from goodreads.com:

    People move to New York looking for magic and nothing will convince them it isn't there.
    Charles Thomas Tester hustles to put food on the table, keep the roof over his father's head, from Harlem to Flushing Meadows to Red Hook. He knows what magic a suit can cast, the invisibility a guitar case can provide, and the curse written on his skin that attracts the eye of wealthy white folks and their cops. But when he delivers an occult tome to a reclusive sorceress in the heart of Queens, Tom opens a door to a deeper realm of magic, and earns the attention of things best left sleeping.
    A storm that might swallow the world is building in Brooklyn. Will Black Tom live to see it break?

  • Classic HBC - The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor LaValle [Online meeting]

    Link visible for attendees

    N.B. this meeting is held online via Zoom. If you want to join us for the in-person discussion, it is held the day before (on Wednesday) in a central London pub.

    In our first ever Classic Horror Book Club event, we are returning to the Ballad of Black Tom, which we first read in May 2017. It was a hit with us back then, but will it prove just as popular still?

    The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor LaValle is a retelling of the most controversial (read massively racist) of HP Lovercraft's stories, The Horror at Red Hook (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Horror_at_Red_Hook). The novella introduces a new main character, a young black man called Tommy Tester and gives a new perspective on the summoning of the Great Old Ones in 1920s Queens.

    Meeting starts at 7pm with drink breaks at 8 and 9. The discussion will end around 10pm but leave whenever you need to.

    Here's the blurb from goodreads.com:

    People move to New York looking for magic and nothing will convince them it isn't there.
    Charles Thomas Tester hustles to put food on the table, keep the roof over his father's head, from Harlem to Flushing Meadows to Red Hook. He knows what magic a suit can cast, the invisibility a guitar case can provide, and the curse written on his skin that attracts the eye of wealthy white folks and their cops. But when he delivers an occult tome to a reclusive sorceress in the heart of Queens, Tom opens a door to a deeper realm of magic, and earns the attention of things best left sleeping.
    A storm that might swallow the world is building in Brooklyn. Will Black Tom live to see it break?