H.P. Lovecraft

The 25 Greatest Homes in Literature

Great characters in literature get all the credit, but the fictional spaces they occupy are often just as interesting and can provide an opportunity for the reader to go even deeper into a story. What would some of your favorite stories be without the creepy old farmhouses, crumbling castles, and estates overlooking a body of water whose waves crash against the rocks at night? To celebrate the birthday of Daphne du Maurier — a writer who gave us one of the 20th century’s most unforgettable grand old homes, in Rebecca — we’re rounding up the most memorable structures that served as settings for some of our favorite… Read More

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10 Controversial Short Stories

It caused an uproar upon its publication, but Shirley Jackson’s “The Lottery” is considered by many to be her most famous work. She essentially conceived of The Hunger Games before it existed with her story about one village’s bizarre ritual, examining persecution, blind acceptance, and the parallels to her own life. Today is the author’s birthday. Inspired by “The Lottery’s” significance, we highlighted other controversial short stories, below. Feel free to add to our list with your personal favorites. … Read More

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Neil Gaiman on the Writers Who Influenced and Inspired Him

Neil Gaiman is a hugely important figure for comic-book fans in their 20s and 30s. For many of us, he represented a shift from the traditional superheroes we had been raised on — the caped crusaders, the men of steel — but Gaiman, and most notably his creation The Sandman, also marked the first time many of us felt like there was someone cool within the ranks of comics geeks. Gaiman was, and continues to be, one of the only writers in any genre who can effortlessly excite comic-book fans, literary fiction readers, and everybody in between. He is pleasing to read whether you’re a fan of horror, a fan of sci-fi, or even a fan of T. S. Eliot, whose The Waste Land is quoted in this 1988 advertisement trumpeting the eerie arrival of Sandman: … Read More

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The Greatest Horror Movies You Haven’t Seen

As Halloween approaches, you’ll be inundated with more spooky stories and fiendish films than you can possibly consume before October 31. However, if you’re looking for a creepy movie to curl up with that doesn’t star a madman named Freddy, Jason, or Michael, we have a solution. These underrated, under-seen, and unusual horror films offer something scary that strays from the norm. You’ll still find supernatural terror, psychopathic killers, and ghastly creatures in our slate of 15, but these original, beautifully photographed stories are refreshingly different from the usual Halloween… Read More

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The 50 Scariest Books of All Time

The air is getting crisper, the nights are getting longer, and All Hallow’s Eve draws near. You know what that means: it’s time to curl up with a book guaranteed to give you the shivers — or at least make you check the locks twice. Here, for your horrifying pleasure, are 50 of the scariest books ever written in the English language, whether horror, nonfiction, or speculative futures you never want to… Read More

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The 10 Best Cults in Pop Culture

Calling a social group a “cult” in a contemporary context means you aren’t speaking of them in the most positive light. Decades of tabloid news causes us to associate the word with worst-case scenarios, from the Manson Family to the Peoples Temple. Generally, belonging to a “cult” nowadays is a no-no and, for the most part, ends badly. In fiction, however, small groups of people living together and worshiping a person or deity not from one of the major religions can make for great — and even sometimes lighthearted — entertainment. We’ve rounded up some of the best examples. … Read More

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Books About Banned and Dangerous Books

Another year remembering the books that are mad, bad, and dangerous to know (we say this with a grin, of course) is coming to a close. Banned Books Week celebrates the freedom to read, while drawing attention to literature that has been challenged or banned. The number of books that have struggled against censorship is staggering, but there are also books about books that are considered a menace to society. Here are several of them. Leave us your picks, below. … Read More

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Celebrate H.P. Lovecraft’s Birthday With 20 of His Creepiest Book Covers

There are very few writers who’ve had a story written in their memory by Jorge Luis Borges. It is also exceedingly rare for an author to serve as the inspiration for great songs by Black Sabbath or Metallica. But that is the unique place H.P. Lovecraft, who was born 133 years ago today, has come to occupy in our cultural memory. … Read More

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10 New Must-Reads for July

Though the book industry tends to slow down in the summer (heat makes it hard to turn the pages), July is still filled with great reads for your poolside or air-conditioner-side afternoons. Don’t be shy: grown ups can indulge in summer reading too. After the jump, ten books to get pumped about this month. What are you most excited to read? Sound off in the comments. … Read More

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15 Cultural Icons on the Pleasures of Coffee

Artistic coffee addicts the world over were doubtless dismayed to read an article in this week’s New Yorker asserting that their beloved cup of joe might actually be stifling their creativity. Sure, there may be science behind it, but considering how many writers and artists have used the stuff, Flavorwire is not wholly convinced (willful ignorance?). To plead the case, find some coffee-related musings from various creative types after the jump. If you find your favorite missing here, add it to the list in the comments. … Read More

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