Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Bookmonkey x Penguin Horror: Day One

So here we are again at the beginning of October, with a month ahead to examine another aspect of the horror genre. In the past I’ve done deep dives into series like Twilight, Hack/Slash, and Saw, and then over trends in horror like Reimaginings. This month I thought it would be best to go back to some of the roots of horror and hit some great literature at the same time. To do that, I’m going to spend the next thirty days diving into the six titles released under the Penguin Horror imprint last year.  This is largely for two reasons:

1) For my birthday two months ago, my friends and family got me the entire collection, and I thought it would be a nice excuse to use them.

2) As someone who has collected horror for decades, I have a massive collection of mismatched, creased, and roughed-up paperbacks and the idea of some very nicely put together hardcover titles in my favourite genre is too good to pass up.

The six titles: Frankenstein, The Raven, The Thing on the Doorstep and Other Weird Stories, The Haunting of Hill House, Haunted Castles, and American Supernatural Tales, were curated by Award-winning filmmaker and longtime horror literature fan Guillermo del Toro, and as I’ve been enjoying his work in film since my wife and I first caught Mimic back in 1997, I thought I would give the collection he put together with Penguin books a shot.

The stories covered throughout the series cover 182 years of the genre (Frankenstein was published in 1818, and the final story in American Supernatural Tales, was published in 2000), but for a guy who has been reading horror pretty consistently over the last three decades of my life, the series seems like a pretty good place to visit (and in a few cases revisit).

So stick around for the next month, learn a few things about my love of the genre and perhaps even get bit by the horror bug a little yourelf…

NOTE: Thanks to my pal Mike for this month's great Paul Buckley-inspired banner art, which includes an image of the series spines I got from this great article about the cover illustrations done by Paul Buckley

2nd NOTE: I grabbed the fanned-out cover image from The Fire Wire Pop Culture blog in case you'd like to see close ups of each title.

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