07-21-18 Patricia Sargeant

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Classic Scary Tales by Lynn Lovegreen

This month’s theme is “Why I read scary books/watch scary movies.” Personally, I am not into horror. I get enough adrenaline in my day-to-day life, thank you. But I do appreciate a good psychological mystery or thriller. Two of my favorite authors in this genre are Edgar Allan Poe and Henry James.
You probably read some Poe in school. I love how he creates narrators that are scary-crazy yet human enough to be believable. The main character in “The Cask of Amontillado,” for example, really expects you to admire his wit and appreciate how he walled up his enemy, but he is intelligent. And I love “The Raven” and how Poe’s word choice creates the perfect tone for that dark night.

Henry James is best known for his literary novels. He doesn’t have a lot of thrillers in his works, but James’ The Turn of the Screw is a great ghost story. He uses his keen understanding of the human mind to create a Gothic novella worth reading on Halloween night.

Cooperstown Graveyard by TheBrassGlass via Morguefile

Some people prefer contemporary authors, but I find myself going back to the classics fairly often. Maybe I’m just old-fashioned—that would explain why I write historical fiction myself! ;-) But I also enjoy the way these authors write. They prove you don’t need blood and guts to scare a reader. I recommend you try one of these the next time you want something to give you the chills. 

Enjoy the season, whether you’re into super-scary or something just a bit spooky!

Lynn Lovegreen grew up in Alaska, and still lives there. Her young adult/new adult historical romances are set in the Alaska Gold Rush, a great time for drama, romance, and independent characters. See her website at www.lynnlovegreen.com.


Sarah Raplee said...

I love Poe's writing, too, Lynn! I'll have to read Henry James' story. I also prefer stories that scare you without all the blood and guts. Great post!

Lynn Lovegreen said...

Thanks, Sarah! :-)

Judith Ashley said...

Lynn, there is so much to learn when reading accurately researched historical fiction! I remember reading more Poe than James. Not sure I could read Poe as well now as I used to - shivered at your reference to The Cask of Amontillado ---the idea of being trapped behind a brick wall is the stuff of nightmares. But Poe's Quoth The Raven "Nevermore" - doesn't even raise one goosebumps.

Lynn Lovegreen said...

Thanks for your comment, Judith. Maybe Poe's villains pack more punch than his talking raven. :-)

Diana McCollum said...

Edgar Allan Poe and Henry James are classics. Love being scared without the blood and guts of some horror authors. Great post!

Lynn Lovegreen said...

Thanks, Diana, Enjoy the season!

Pippa Jay said...

We never got set Poe at school, though we read a lot of Ted Hughes and a very dark WWII spy thriller called Rogue Male. I'm not a fan of scary or thrillers though I have a weird things for zombies (not the classic Hollywood version though!).