horror literature

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Over the Past 25 Years, the Big Publishers Got Bigger—and Fewer A report from Publishers Weekly: As 2022 began, the U.S. trade publishing business was dominated by what has been called the Big Five—Simon & Schuster, Penguin Random House, HarperCollins, Hachette Book Group, and Macmillan. Before the Penguin–Random House merger in 2013, that group was …

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Home and Away: Horror & Gothic Fiction 2022 Among this season’s horror releases, twinned themes emerge. On one side, the oppressive atmosphere of a childhood home and the secrets it holds; on the other, the ambiguity of liminal spaces and the unease of isolation. PW spoke with editors about the fear of the unknown, whether …

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Poll Shows Majority Oppose Banning Books About History, Race “According to a recent CBS News/YouGov poll, a large majority of Americans don’t think books that discuss race, criticize America’s history of slavery, or share different political views should be banned from school libraries or classrooms.” Categories: Censorship Feminist Phantasms: Recent Haunted House Novels by Women …

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How Contemporary Literary Fiction Is Reclaiming the Insanity Arc and Humanizing Women Dee Das starts her essay with this premise: A hundred or so years ago, women were silenced into submission by psychiatry under the label of ‘insane’, every time they posed a threat to the models of domesticity. Any woman who didn’t conform to …

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Front yard decorated to look like a grave yard, with fake head stones and signs that read "Ghost" and "Boo."

Happy Halloween!

Why do we read scary books? “We’re a peculiar lot, when you think about it: we work so hard to make our world, our environment safer… and then we actively seek out things that will make us afraid. Horror movies, urban legends, ghost stories. We hunt down the darkness and we revel in it. Why? …

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Students Protest Book Bans in Pennsylvania School District Last week’s Literary Links included an article about censorship in a Pennsylvania school. Here’s a follow-up: “students have spoken up, demanding that materials by Black and Brown authors be reinstated in the classroom.” Becoming the Thing That Haunts the House: Gothic Fiction and the Fear of Change …

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Inside the Simon & Schuster Blowup Over Its Mike Pence Book Deal This publishing dust-up just won’t go away. Here the Wall Street Journal takes on the business angle, of companies forced to “address employee demands.” Philip Roth biography, pulled last month, has new publisher And here’s an update on the other publishing story that …

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Discussion

Re-Examining My Stance on Horror

Introduction Ever since I started Notes in the Margin back in the late 1990s, I’ve been saying that I don’t like, and therefore don’t read, horror literature, particularly books about vampires, werewolves, and zombies. However, lately I’ve read several articles about horror that have convinced me it might be time for me to re-examine my …

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14 of the Scariest Books Ever Written Halloween reading season is upon us. Leila Siddiqui, declaring that “as readers, we love the sensation of being scared—it is adrenaline-inducing and addictive,” offers her list of reading material for the season. THE WOMEN WHO SHAPED THE PAST 100 YEARS OF AMERICAN LITERATURE This article from Smithsonian Magazine …

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Looking at Epic Poetry Through 21st-Century Eyes “New translations of the ‘Aeneid,’ ‘Beowulf’ and other ancient stories challenge some of our modern-day ideas.” Classical epic poetry has been the basis of the Western literary canon for centuries and has helped shape social values and political identities as well as literary history. But new translations of …

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