Halloween is not a big thing over here. Somehow it just doesn’t catch on. Even though the shops sell Halloween costumes and decorations, even though the TV channels show spooky movies, the people seem reluctant to really get into the spirit. Strange, usually the Germans are always more than willing to adopt foreign customs.
Image Vintage Halloween postcard by riptheskull on flickr
Still, I had a look around for horror classics and found a list at Techland. According to them these are the 15 must-read horror classics. I’m no big fan of horror, so let’s see how many I have read (in italics).
- The Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole, 1764
- Vathek by William Beckford, 1786
- The Mysteries of Udolpho by Ann Radcliffe, 1794
- The Monk by Matthew Gregory Lewis, 1796
- Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, 1818
- Melmoth the Wanderer by Charles Robert Maturin, 1820
- Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson, 1886
- The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde, 1890
- The Great God Pan by Arthur Machen, 1894
- Dracula by Bram Stoker, 1897
- The Turn of the Screw by Henry James, 1898
- The Case of Charles Dexter Ward by H. P. Lovecraft, 1927
- At the Mountains of Madness by H. P. Lovecraft, 1936
- Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier, 1938
- Conjure Wife by Fritz Leiber, 1943
5 out of 15, not so great. I always wanted to read Castle of Otranto and, as an Austen lover, The Mysteries of Udolpho, but never got around to doing so. I have to put them on my to-read-list on Goodreads, so I won’t forget. Apart from those two I’m not very interested. Except maybe for Conjure Wife. That sounds interesting. Lovecraft I will definitely give a pass. I tried to read some short stories by him once and found them too weird for me.
Are you a horror lover? How many have you read?