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Kiln People
Beth Meacham, David Brin

The Monkey's Paw (Creative Short Stories)

The Monkey's Paw (Creative Short Stories) - William Wymark Jacobs;W. W. Jacobs You probably already know this story. A monkey's paw that can grant wishes but always at a horrible cost. Unfortunately, I can’t write any kind of synopsis without totally spoiling the story. In any case, it is a classic and highly influential supernatural horror story. If you are familiar with Stephen King’s much more horrifying [b: Pet Sematary|10583|Pet Sematary|Stephen King|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1308894674s/10583.jpg|150017] you will probably find that The Monkey's Paw is its direct inspiration.

Certainly The Monkey's Paw is a great little story but not particularly scary for today’s sensibilities. The hint at something unspeakable lurking behind a closed door just does not work anymore, to be honest, it never worked for me to begin with. If you got it flaunt it. For me, the (anti)climax of the story is a bit of a cop out. The author should have gone all the way and show us some messed up monstrosity that will drive the reader insane just from the description, but he pulled back at the last minute.

Still, it’s a nice and quick read with some good spooky atmosphere. An OK Halloween read I think. It probably seems terrifying a century ago.

Note
If you like spooky stories about wishes gone wrong check out Robert Louis Stevenson’s excellent The Bottle Imp.