Got a Definitive List in Your Genre?

As a horror writer, I always feel like I'm STILL not well-read enough in my genre - despite the mountain of tomes I get through. There's always that niggling feeling that there's some old, eldritch gem by some hoary old writer that I've missed - and this from a girl who pays attention to her Machen, her Chambers, her Blackwood, her Bierce.

So I was pleased to stumble upon this very nifty list of 100 must-read works, some of which include said hoariness. Happy to say I've read a lot of them, but also happy to have a list to work through - and keep up with. (Especially as I've just ordered other older awesomeness to keep a sista fresh, like the insanely thorough and awesome Dan Simmons' SONG OF KALI - eep!).

So here, for your edification (and yeah, okay, mainly so I have a central place I can refer back to as I go along) is this awesome list from Dark Echo. (The Best 25 Horror Books of the New Millennium has some good ones, too.)

So take a look and see if you've checked any of these out, or if you'd add something else. Me? Off the top of my head, I'd definitely add Simmons' THE TERROR and Clegg's NEVERLAND. Atmospheric, lyrical spooky bad-assery. Trust.

THE 100
1. Robert Aickman: Sub Rosa (1968)
2. J.G. Ballard: Crash (1973)
3. Iain Banks: The Wasp Factory (1984)
4. Clive Barker: The Books of Blood (1984-1986)
5. Charles Beaumont: Selected Stories (1988. reprinted as The Howling Man and Other Stories, 1992)
6. Ambrose Bierce: Collected Works of Ambrose Bierce (1909) [However, The Collected Writings of Ambrose Bierce (1999) may be more complete and probably is the preferred -- and obtainable --of the two.]
7. Algernon Blackwood: Best Ghost Stories Of Algernon Blackwood (1973 edition, earliest story first published in 1906)
8. William Peter Blatty: The Exorcist (1971)
9. Robert Bloch: Selected Short Stories (1988)
10. Anthony Boucher: The Compleat Werewolf (1968)
11. Marjorie Bowen: The Last Bouquet: Some Twilight Tales (1933)
12. Ray Bradbury: The October Country (1955) (Something Wicked This Way Comes is a very close second pick for Bradbury
13. Poppy Z. Brite: Swamp Foetus (Also published as Wormwood) (1993) 14. Ramsey Campbell: Alone With the Horrors: The Great Short Fiction of Ramsey Campbell 1961-1991 (1993)
15. Jonathan Carroll: Land of Laughs (1980)
16. Angela Carter: Burning Your Boats: Collected Stories (1995) (stories from 1962-1993)
17. Hugh B. Cave: Death Stalks the Night (1995) (stories mostly from the 30s and 40s)
18. Suzy McKee Charnas: Vampire Tapestry (1980)
19. John Collier: Fancies & Goodnights (1951) (stories from 1931-1951)
20. Nancy A. Collins: Nameless Sins (1994)
21. Joseph Conrad: Heart of Darkness (1902)
22. Dennis Cooper: Frisk (1992)
23. Harry Crews: A Feast of Snakes (1976)
24. Roald Dahl: Tales of the Unexpected (1979)
25. Bradley Denton: Blackburn (1993)
26. Philip K. Dick: The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch (1964)
27. Elizabeth Engstrom: Lizard Wine (1996)
28. Daphne DuMaurier: Rebecca (1931)
29. Katherine Dunn: Geek Love (1983)
30. Harlan Ellison: Deathbird Stories (1975) [Deathbird Stories is the more significant dark collection, but The Essential Ellison (1987) is more complete.]
31. The Werewolf of Paris by Guy Endore (1933)
32. Dennis Etchison: The Dark Country (1982)
33. John Farris: All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By (1977)
34. Neil Gaiman: Sandman (1988 to 1996)
35. William Golding: Lord of the Flies (1954)
36. Ed Gorman: Moonchasers (1996)
37. Charles L. Grant: Tales from the Nightside (1981)
38. Thomas Harris: Red Dragon (1981)
39. James Herbert: Portent (1996)
40. William Hjortsberg: Falling Angel (1978)
41. Brian Hodge: Falling Idols (1998)
42. William Hope Hodgson: The House on the Borderland (1908)
43. Shirley Jackson: The Haunting of Hill House (1959)
44. Henry James: Stories of the Supernatural (1970) (Stories pre-1915)
45. M.R. James: Ghost Stories of an Antiquary (1904)
46. Graham Joyce: Requiem (1995)
47. Franz Kafka: The Trial (1925)
48. Jack Ketchum: The Girl Next Door (1989)
49. Stephen King: The Shining (1977)
50. T.E.D. Klein: The Ceremonies (1984)
51. Kathe Koja: Skin (1993)
52. Dean Koontz: Strange Highways (1995)
53. Jerzy Kosinski: The Painted Bird (1965)
54. Joe R. Lansdale: The Nightrunners (1987)
56. Richard Laymon: The Cellar (1980)
57. Tanith Lee: Dreams of Dark and Light (1986)
55. Fritz Leiber: Our Lady of Darkness (1977)
58. Ira Levin: Rosemary's Baby (1967)
59. Thomas Ligotti: The Nightmare Factory (1996)
60. Bentley Little: The Ignored (1997)
61. H. P. Lovecraft: Best of H.P. Lovecraft : Bloodcurdling Tales of Horror And The Macabre (1997; earliest story first published 1924) (Lovecraft recommendations were usually of two or more collections --The Dunwich Horror & Others, The Outsider & Others, At the Mountains of Madness and Other Novels, The Shadow Out of Time -- or simply "his complete works." I chose this particular volume because it includes "The Rats in the Walls," "The Call of Cthulhu," "The Dunwich Horror," "The Shadow Out of Time," and "The Colour Out of Space" along with an introduction by Robert Bloch. No plots are given away in introductions and it isn't annotated.)
62. Brian Lumley: Fruiting Bodies and Other Fungi (1993)
63. Arthur Machen: The House of Souls (1906)
64. Robert Marasco. Burnt Offerings (1973)
65. Martin, George R. R.: Fevre Dream (1982)
66. Richard Matheson: I Am Legend (1954)
67. Robert R. McCammon: Swan Song (1987)
68. Cormac McCarthy: Blood Meridian (1985)
69. Ian McEwan: The Cement Garden (1978)
70. Patrick McGrath: Spider (1991)
71 Toni Morrison: Beloved (1988) 72. Kim Newman: Anno-Dracula (1992)
73. Flannery O'Connor: Flannery O'Connor Collected Works (1988)
74. Joyce Carol Oates: Haunted: Tales of the Grotesque (1994)
75. Tim Powers: Anubis Gates (1983)
76. Anne Rice: Interview with the Vampire (1976)
77. David J. Schow: Seeing Red (1989)
78. Anne Rivers Siddons: The House Next Door (1978)
79. John Shirley: Black Butterflies: A Flock on the Dark Side (1998)
80. Lucius Shepard: The Jaguar Hunter (1987)
81. Dan Simmons: Lovedeath (1993)
82. John Skipp & Craig Spector: Dead Lines (1989)
83. Clark Ashton Smith: Out of Space and Time (1942)
84. Peter Straub: Ghost Story (1979)
85. William Browning Spencer: Resume With Monsters (1996)
86. Whitley Strieber: The Wolfen (1978)
87. Theodore Sturgeon: Some of Your Blood (1961)
88. Patrick Susskind: Perfume (1984)
89. Bernard Taylor: Sweetheart, Sweetheart (1977)
90. Melanie Tem: Prodigal (1991)
91. Thomas Tessier: The Nightwalker (1979)
92. Thomas Tyron: The Other (1971)
93. Dalton Trumbo: Johnny Got His Gun (1939)
94. E. H. Visiak: Medusa (1929)
95. Karl Edward Wagner: In A Lonely Place (1983)
96. Manly Wade Wellman: Worse Things Waiting (1973)
97. F. Paul Wilson: The Keep (1981)
98. Cornell Woolrich: Night Has A Thousnd Eyes (1945)
99. T.M. Wright: Strange Seed (1977)
100. Chelsea Quinn Yarbo: Hotel Transylvania (1978)


Anonymous | June 4, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Wow, cool list. I'll have to pass that on to my hubs who is a big horror fan. I'm not, alas. I just do my best to stay on top of new releases in my genre, and to sprinkle in the occasional older gem that piques my interest.


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