Elizabeth Hand, the maven of literary versatility, has taken a bold step into the supernatural world with her latest novel, A Haunting on the Hill, revisiting the work of legendary author Shirley Jackson.
Hand’s command of language and her extraordinary ability to infuse hope into the darkest of tales has left readers on the edge of their seats.
Her journey as a writer is reflected in her impressive prose, often woven with rich, evocative language, crafted through eclectic research, and populated by worlds so vivid they practically breathe.
Amid the depths of despair, Hand’s stories consistently radiate themes of hope and renewal.
Since her debut in Twilight Zone Magazine in 1988 with Prince of Flowers, Hand has garnered numerous prestigious awards, including the Nebula, International Horror Guild, World Fantasy, James Tiptree, and Mythopoeic Society Awards.
She ventured into the expansive Star Wars universe, penning action-adventure tales featuring the infamous bounty hunter Boba Fett. Her co-creation, the DC heroine Anima, was part of an ambitious comic book project with Paul Whitcover.
In her latest book, A Haunting on the Hill, Hand embarks on a unique journey as she explores the haunted realm of Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House.
The story revolves around Holly Sherwin, a struggling playwright granted the opportunity of a lifetime to develop her play, Witching Night. Hill House, with its enigmatic aura and concealed location, becomes her chosen sanctuary for creativity. Encouraged by her girlfriend Nisa, they rent the mansion for a month—accompanied by a troupe of actors, each with their own ghosts.
Yet, as they delve deeper into the heart of Hill House, the peculiarities begin to unravel.
The grounds are haunted by strange creatures, eerie sounds reverberate within its walls, and time itself seems to waver. Holly and her companions find themselves not only at odds with each other but with a malevolent entity ensconced within the house.
Something has loomed within Hill House for decades, and it no longer intends to remain concealed.
Elizabeth Hand began her writing journey at a tender age, nurturing the aspiration of becoming a writer for as long as she can remember. Her breakthrough came when she was in her late twenties, with a publication in Twilight Zone Magazine. She openly admits to feeling like a late bloomer in the literary world.
When asked why ghost stories continue to captivate our imaginations, Hand offers a profound perspective, “Ghost stories were probably the very first narratives that humans shared.”
They delve into our primal fears—what hides in the dark, the origin of the terrifying figures in our dreams, the mysteries of the afterlife, and the unexplained noises that unsettle us.
Ghost stories have always been a means to both deflect and arouse our fears, creating an experience that keeps us close to the campfire of our collective curiosity.
In A Haunting on the Hill, Elizabeth Hand deftly channels the essence of this timeless fascination with the supernatural.
Her return to Shirley Jackson’s world is bound to leave readers thrilled and enthralled by the mysteries that await within the haunted walls of Hill House. Hand’s unique storytelling ability guarantees that, just like the first humans huddled around a campfire, we will find ourselves irresistibly drawn into the tantalizing enigma of ghostly tales.
Hand’s novel is an exciting addition to the world of literary horror, and it promises to continue her tradition of crafting stories that are both haunting and filled with hope.