Suggest a Horror Historical Fiction or Low Fantasy

#1
Hi everyone,
I've been in the mood to read a horror book, but I haven't found a good one. I'm looking for something more or less historical - nothing paranormal, too gory, or too modern. I considered reading Bram Stoker's Dracula - I've always wanted too - but it is LONG and I don't have enough time to make that kind of commitment. So, any suggestions. Thanks!
 

Bierschneeman

Journeyed there and back again
#4
Hi everyone,
I've been in the mood to read a horror book, but I haven't found a good one. I'm looking for something more or less historical - nothing paranormal, too gory, or too modern. I considered reading Bram Stoker's Dracula - I've always wanted too - but it is LONG and I don't have enough time to make that kind of commitment. So, any suggestions. Thanks!
Hp lovecraft

He is usually considered the grandfather of modern horror. Writing in 1920s and 30s he is said to inspire directly or indirectly every modern horror writer.

He is neither gory or paranornal. And is mostly short stories, and novellas, very short. They are very historical too, typically dealing with ancients, or the older undeveloped side of town (in 1920)

For the earliest modern variety of zombie read "cool air" or "Herbert west"

For the first modern definition ghouls, try "pick mans model" rats in the wall (they are less sinister community in dream quest of kadath , a fantasy novella)

He has dozens of other short stories, all public domain, (hplovecraft.com I'd a great website with all nonmissing stories) lots dealing with psychological fear, or often the cthulhu mythos.

The best stories are.
Colour from outside space
Dagon
At the mountain of madness
Call of cthulhu
Shadow over inasmuch
Dunwhich horror
Doom that came to sarnath
Cats of ulthar
 

Silvion Night

Sir Readalot
Staff member
#6
He is neither gory or paranornal.
I'd say the stories by HP Lovecraft are all about the paranormal.

The Shadow over Innsmouth. Autocorrect? :)

Anyways, I second Tom's recommendation. It's one of the best horror books I've read.

Also, if you're into horror you can't ignore Stephen King. Most of his classical stuff is what would fall in your category "too modern" or "paranormal". However, there is some stuff that you might like, for example:

Hearts in Atlantis. It's a collection of short stories with recurring characters that is presented more or less in historical order. It's a horror/drama about the baby boomer generation. It deals with topics like poverty, addiction, the Vietam war, the hippy movement etcetera. It's not as creepy as King's other works, but it sometimes gave me the willies anyways.
11/22/63. This one is absolutely awesome. It deals with a time traveller who goes back in time to try and stop the JFK assassination. This is as historical as it can get. Suspenseful, exciting, exhilarating and creepy; King at his best.
 

Bierschneeman

Journeyed there and back again
#7
I'd say the stories by HP Lovecraft are all about the paranormal.


The Shadow over Innsmouth. Autocorrect? :)

Anyways, I second Tom's recommendation. It's one of the best horror books I've read.

Also, if you're into horror you can't ignore Stephen King. Most of his classical stuff is what would fall in your category "too modern" or "paranormal". However, there is some stuff that you might like, for example:

Hearts in Atlantis. It's a collection of short stories with recurring characters that is presented more or less in historical order. It's a horror/drama about the baby boomer generation. It deals with topics like poverty, addiction, the Vietam war, the hippy movement etcetera. It's not as creepy as King's other works, but it sometimes gave me the willies anyways.
11/22/63. This one is absolutely awesome. It deals with a time traveller who goes back in time to try and stop the JFK assassination. This is as historical as it can get. Suspenseful, exciting, exhilarating and creepy; King at his best.
Yes auto correct.

If we go by the broad definition of paranormal, anything beyond scientific understanding, than almost everything horror is paranormal including the OPs suggestion Dracula. So I assume there's a line. Mostly when I hear paranormal used they are referring to ghosts, psychics, or alien autopsies, I feel hplovecraft skirts passed those by the fact their are no ghosts anything thought to be ghosts are treated like dracula is treated. There are NO psychics, and the alien stuff is more of ancient races in a Gothic horror Manor. That without mentioning origin planets wouldn't seem very alien. Just horrific.

I don't know, that was just assumptions based on the inclusion of Dracula as "not paranormal"
 
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#8
Hearts in Atlantis. It's a collection of short stories with recurring characters that is presented more or less in historical order.
Sounds interesting. I haven't read much (if any) horror - part of the reason for this post - so I'm getting an idea of what's out there and making a list! I'd like a good monster story, but anything with too much alien/ghost/demon/psychic activity I think would be too much for me.