Story 11: “Dreams in the Witch House” by H.P. Lovecraft

This was a story in two parts, I felt.  The first part was boring, but necessary to set up the far more fast paced and exciting second part.  It was a bit longer than some of the other ones I’ve read, but still I think it was the fact I couldn’t easily get into it that made it take so long for me to read.  But in the end, the master Lovecraft pulls it off.  It was a terrifying idea and I’m not sure I’ll be as comfortable the next time I wake up after a nightmare.

Summary:  A student, gifted in mathematics, physics, and metaphysics, takes up residence in a dilapidated, large home with a cheap rent price for a room.  It’s cheap because it has a frightening, scary history, one involving a woman accused of being a witch.  While staying there, he begins to sleepwalk, have terrible dreams, and not be able to recall what happens at night.   His mind is filled with strange angles and mathematical equations.  He begins to dream of strange horizons, nightmarish landscapes, and horrible foreign worlds inhabited by terrible denizens.  Sometimes he wakes up with an object from his dreams resting on his bedside table.  The witch who used to inhabit the house, along with something that might be called her pet, begins to visit his dreams and calls upon him to do unspeakable acts.  In the end, it may have been better for him to splurge on a higher rent district.

Writing:  7/10

Personal Fright:  7/10

General Horror/Oppressiveness:  9/10

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