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Hell House / Richard Matheson
I've had a slow reading month so far, for some reason. I am currently reading The Night Ocean by Paul La Farge. I'm not sure yet if it qualifies, but it is an homage to H.P. Lovecraft's story by the same name, so it very well may fit in the gothic category.
It wasn't gothic, but I did read the new novella by Stephen King and Richard Chizmar, Gwendy's Button Box, which I liked a lot.
I see the word "gothic" and tend to think of books over 100 years old!
It is just before Christmas, 1970. Parapsychologist Lionel, his wife Edith, and two mediums, Ben and Florence, are hired to spend a week in “Hell House”, the “Mount Everest” of haunted houses. Lionel brings with him a machine he’s built to prove that ghosts do not exist. Ben was an amazing medium at only 15 years old and was in Hell House the last time a group of people entered in 1940; he was the only one to come out alive. Florence is clergy in a small town and a “spiritualist”, or “mental medium”, and very much believes that ghosts are there.
It started off a little slow, but it kept building until the end. Overall, I liked it. Just a warning that the women in the house are pretty much terrorized via sexual violence; whereas, for the men, it’s physical violence. It’s unfortunate that sex was used so much in this book against the women, but rarely any other form of scare tactic.