The Woman in Black

The Woman in Black
Susan Hill

Really? An introduction that has a family telling scary stories by the fire, then a ghost who likes to hang around cemeteries, a creepy old house that stands alone on a foggy marsh, disembodied screams, a haunted nursery, a town with a dark secret . . . is there a horror cliché Susan Hill doesn’t mine in this book? The narrator even hears a strange noise and goes to the window, only to decide that it is the wind and “Nothing more.” No wonder he feels on a couple of occasions like he’s trapped in a novel (if not Poe’s poem). In real need of a more original twist at the end, but for such a short work it’s amazing how much effect Hill manages to milk out of this elegantly cobwebbed material.