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Black House and Other Stories [Hardcover]

Patricia Highsmith

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Book Description

Sept. 28 1981
Some neighbours are playing Scrabble one evening when their cat drags into the house not a bird, or some other catch, but human fingers. A guest arrives at a dinner party where he is not welcome, and his hosts conspire to find and attack his Achilles heel. The crew of the Emma C rescue a beautiful girl floating unconscious in the sea and tension explodes between the men on board. A childless thirtysomething couple decide to invite two elderly folk to live with them, but have they been too generous? In this collection of Patricia Highsmith's wonderfully unsettling short stories, people's motives are frequently twisted and no occurrence is without a sinister underlying meaning.
--This text refers to the Print on Demand (Paperback) edition.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: William Heinemann Ltd (Sept. 28 1981)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0434335185
  • ISBN-13: 978-0434335183
  • Product Dimensions: 21.3 x 12.4 x 2.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 454 g

Product Description


'The Black House runs true to beguilingly upsetting form' Event 'Her stories are masterpieces of misanthropy and futility' Irish Times 'Nothing is certain when we have crossed this frontier. It is not the world as we once believed we knew it, but it is frighteningly more real to us than the house next door' Graham Greene 'A border zone of the macabre, the disturbing, the not-quite accidental' New York Times Book Review --This text refers to the Print on Demand (Paperback) edition.

About the Author

Patricia Highsmith was born in Fort Worth, Texas, in 1921. Her first novel, Strangers on a Train, was made into a film by Alfred Hitchcock in 1951. The Talented Mr Ripley, published in 1955, was awarded the Edgar Allan Poe Scroll by the Mystery Writers of America and introduced the fascinating anti-hero Tom Ripley, who was to appear in many of her later crime novels. Patricia Highsmith died in Locarno, Switzerland, in February 1995. Her last novel, Small g: A Summer Idyll, was published posthumously. --This text refers to the Print on Demand (Paperback) edition.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.1 out of 5 stars  7 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars a tight, competent short story collection by the master.. April 23 2005
By lazza - Published on
'The Black House' contains several short stories which are a slight departure from Patricia Highsmith's normal stomping ground - namely, psychotics and murderers. These stories have a somewhat of mild surreal, psychological angle to them. Daily routine life on the exterior becomes distorted when closely examined ... er, or something like that. There is no common underlying theme to the story. They seem to be written over a period of years, published for various periodicals. The publisher decided to, thankfully, give these stories an second life by reissuing them in this book.

Bottom line: enjoyable, disturbing stories for fans of Patricia Highsmith ... and those not acquainted with her works.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If I could rate it 11, I would Oct. 16 1997
By A Customer - Published on
Everytime you open a book by Patricia Highsmith, there is no certainty at all about what you will encounter (at least that happens to me). However, this time I found more surprises than usual. Each of the 11 stories has its particular charm, but the one I loved most was "Blow It". It is worth buying the book just to read this story. If you are a woman and you like Highsmith, you cannot afford to leave this one unread. And, remember, reality is more frightening than horror movies!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A collection of short stories by Patricia Highsmith. June 11 1998
By A Customer - Published on
The Black House is a very unique book. You may think it sounds like a horror book. But it is really only scary in the way that people are in this book. It takes a while to become used to the author's style of writing, so you have to be patient. Some of these stories are very strange, be prepared. I found this book to be frusturating because it was so different.The author did a good job leaving you with a question at the end of each story.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Talented Ms. Highsmith. Dec 10 2007
By Michael G. - Published on
The Black House is a collection of eleven short stories written by highly acclaimed novelist Patricia Highsmith. All of the stories are good and a number of them are very good. Each story has a skillfully written narrative that unfolds smoothly as well as believable characters notable for their easily recognizable personality types.
Many of the stories contain shocking plot twists designed to demonstrate the darkest aspects of human nature. In some cases these unexpected events are rather disturbing.
Recommended to readers who appreciate "slice of life" stories and are not put off by the prospect of experiencing some viscerally uncomfortable moments along the way.
5.0 out of 5 stars God, I love Patricia Highsmith. Feb. 11 2014
By Trudy Sanders - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
One of my favorite authors - she does it like no one else before or since. Book arrived in stated condition, on time, no complaints.

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