Richard Matheson is a master of subtlety! Hell House invites you into its' madness and doesn't release you to the very end. As the characters approach the house, the feeling of doom is almost palpable. Matheson's proficiency at weaving simile and metaphor to tingle your spine is genius. The author wrote a masterpiece of horror without having to revert to gore instead relying on imagery a craft Matheson's knows all to well.
I figured I would give this book a shot. It was written a while ago but that doesn't stop it from being a pretty good listen. It was interesting and the story takes some nice twists. Deffinitly worth a credit. Not really scarey but pretty weird.
I was sadly disappointed in this book, as Matheson is one of my favorite writers. I listen to the Audible recording of "Stir of Echoes" about once a year, and have read most of his works. This book, particularly as I hadn't read it before, is weirdly derivative. Anyone who knows Shirley Jackson's "The Haunting of Hill House", which is almost a decade older, can't help but see the screaming similarities, and anyone who's read "The Shining", which came out nearly a decade after "Hell House", will see that Stephen King took many of the poorly-fleshed out ideas of "HH" and explored them more richly. The characters in "HH" are unoriginal and misogynistic, considering it was 1971 and not 1951. I have no complaints about the reader, but overall I thought the story had been done to death myriad times since the Civil War, and this version does not stand on its own merits.
My reviews are my personal opinions. I am not an expert or a critic or a massive reader/audiobook listener, and neither do I claim to be. I choose my audiobooks by reading the reviews, therefore I try and make my reviews as honest as possible.
Now this book is weird! The reason why I bought it is because it is narrated by Ray Porter - an excellent narrator.
If the author meant for it to be a horror or a thriller, he failed. I listened to the story before bed, alone, in the dark, and it failed to scare me. Many parts of the story I found amusing. I don't want to spoil anything for potential readers, so I will make an example: you're in the middle of a cemetery near a haunted house and you stumble upon a quartet of singing stone busts performing the Lollipop song (if you've seen Haunted Mansion with Eddie Murphy, then you know what I'm talking about). I liked the reason behind the haunting of the house (i.e. the house's past). I didn't like the way the book ended, I felt like the author was in a hurry to finish and just sort of... did.
The narration was amazing though, which doesn't come as a surprise to me, because Ray Porter is a genius and deserves a medal.
Overall, I would recommend this book but not for people who want to listen to a horror story and experience fear and a rush of adrenaline.
I loved this story! not sure about the endijg, but ok. I think for me it would have been better read paperback, this would have had me more focused on it and probably been spookier. The narrator was a bit too monotone for my like, but otherwise he did fine. I will be buying the physical book and reading it again!
There is literally a minute long argument between two characters that consists of, "please," "no", "please", "no", over and over again. Not scary to me at all and the only interesting aspects were the scenes of gore, which were mediocre at best and considerably watered down for the genre. don't waste your time
I don't know what took me so long to discover this literary gem. Best book I've listened to or read in many years or maybe ever. Matheson has many elements at work here. I found it much better than any new age horror I've read. I suggest it to any horror loving reader.