A terrifying short story from Shirley Jackson, the master of the macabre tale.
Shirley Jackson's chilling tales of creeping unease and random cruelty have the power to unsettle and terrify unlike any other. When her story The Lottery was first published in The New Yorker in 1948, readers were so horrified they sent her hate mail. It became known as one of the greatest short stories ever written. Have you read her yet?
'Shirley Jackson's stories are among the most terrifying ever written' Donna Tartt
'An amazing writer ... if you haven't read any of her short stories ... you have missed out on something marvellous' Neil Gaiman
'Her stories are stunning, timeless - as relevant and terrifying now as when they were first published ... 'The Lottery' is so much an icon in the history of the American short story that one could argue it has moved from the canon of American twentieth-century fiction directly into the American psyche, our collective unconscious' A. M. Homes
Shirley Jackson was born in California in 1916. When her short story The Lottery was first published in The New Yorker in 1948, readers were so horrified they sent her hate mail; it has since become one of the greatest American stories of all time. Her first novel, The Road Through the Wall, was published in the same year and was followed by five more: Hangsaman, The Bird's Nest, The Sundial, The Haunting of Hill House and We Have Always Lived in the Castle, widely seen as her masterpiece. Shirley Jackson died in her sleep at the age of 48.
A new film puts Shirley Jackson at the centre of a strange and twisting tale. But how much of Shirley really happened?
Some thought Shirley Jackson was a witch, others dismissed her as an alcoholic… but more still call her the greatest horror writer of the 20th Century.