Horror Books: Get Frightened by Reading Them
Man has a desire to get frightened. This is evident from the ghost stories told and retold over centuries. This desire to get frightened had given birth to thousands of horror stories over ages. Almost all the languages around the globe have a particular section of literature called horror literature which has gained prominence in the past few decades. Most often, horror stories are called fiction as they carry imaginary stories revolving around supernatural powers, evil forces and black magic.
The fiction intended to scare, unsettle or horrify the audience gained popularity as literature since the 1960s. This type of fiction often overlaps science fiction or fantasy and is also called speculative or supernatural fiction. In most of the big cities there are horror book store that sell books based on horror fiction.
Even though not as a polished literary form, the horror stories prevailed years back as tales of demons and vampires in folklores. But as a literature it gained popularity in the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole, The Mysteries of Udolpho by Ann Radcliffe and Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein were the famous horror fiction books of the nineteenth century. The first American horror novel was The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irvin. Edgar Allen Poe, H.P. Lovecraft and M.R. James were some of the finest ghost stories writers of English language.
The contemporary horror books have moved way for extreme violence or shock to entertain the readers. The horror books by Ramsey Campbell and Thomas Ligotti have widely been accepted by the readers. The expansion of horror literature to a wider audience took place in the 1920’s with the rise of the American pulp magazine. The book Weird Tales depicted many stories by Lovecraft, Clark Ashton Smith, E. Hoffmann Price, Seabury Quinn, C.M. Eddy, Jr. and Robert Bloch, thereby making horror literature much popular.
Many critics consider “The Metamorphosis,” “In the Penal Colony” by Franz Kafka and “A Rose for Emily,” by William Faulkner as some of the best horror books in literature. Bram Stoker, Peter Straub, R.L. Stine and Ray Bradbury fall into the category of some of the finest horror writers of the English language.