Tag: edgar allan poe

9 of the Best Literary Halloween Costume Ideas for 2019

Halloween is approaching fast and the time is nigh for costume planning! It’s time for us nerds to shine. Let’s pull out all the stops and don the best for 2019!

To hell with the zombies, sexy nurses, and my GOD if I see one more Harley Quinn I’ll…(no disrespect for Harley though, gotta love her!) You understand though. Let’s be original people!

Here are the nine best Halloween costumes for 2019!

 

 

9. Nosferatu – Vic or Manx

 

images via Amc

 

There’s been a lot of people talking about the new show Nos4A2, a crime and horror tale that puts a spin on the Vampire genre. The show is based on the 2013 novel by Joe Hill, NOS4A2. It tells the thrilling story of Vic McQueen, a woman with supernatural abilities, who crosses paths with the evil and immortal Charlie Manx—a supernatural villain who feeds off the souls of children and then sends them to another realm. Vic strives to defeat Manx and rescue his victims.

Halloween is always a great time for Vampires and monsters, but now it doesn’t have to be a last minute excuse for a costume. Go all out and replicate your favorite character’s costume, or just throw on some fangs.

 

8. Pennywise

 

images via fox & Literary Hub

 

It wouldn’t be Halloween if there wasn’t something scary, but people’s sense of horror are so different nowadays. For some, a bloodthirsty, supernatural demonic being will bring on nightmares, but for others, a simple clown with a bad case of the flesh-eating munchies will scare them to death!

So pick your clown, grab some balloons, and be ready to show off those pearly whites!

 

7. The Joker

 

Image result for joker steps

Image via CinemaBlend

 

This Halloween may be the perfect time for clowns to make a comeback! Not only did we have the It: Chapter 2 released, but we have another film coming out that’s centered around a crazy clown. This October 4th, DC will be releasing the highly anticipated film Joker. Have him dancing, cracking jokes, or trying to take over Gotham City, the Joker is the perfect choice for Halloween!

 

 

 

6. Miles Morales

 

Image result for miles morales

Image via SyFy Wire

 

With the deal between Sony and Marvel being cut, fans of the MCU may have to say good-bye to the friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. However, not all is lost for fans of both the comics and films—we still have the Spiderverse and, most importantly, Miles Morales! Everyone talks about the original webslinger, Peter Parker, or one of the others Spider-Men (or should I say people), Gwen Stacy, but Miles Morales needs a little more loving, making him a fantastic and original choice for a Halloween costume!

 

 

 

5. Game Of Thrones (Family Costume)

 

Images via TVweb and Sporcle

 

Bring the whole family together this Halloween by dressing up as your favorite family from Game of Thrones! Every family has their issues, and this Halloween you can enjoy the relief of realizing that your family is not as bad as most of these families…I hope.

 

4. The Witcher

 

Image result for the witcher netflix

Image via Reddit

 

Fantasy and gaming fans have a lot to look forward to this December with Netflix’s series The Witcher being released. Unleash your inner beast hunter by donning the armor of Geralt of Rivia. The origin of Halloween was to dress up to ward away evil spirits, with this costume ward away your fear of evil spirits, clowns, immortal beings prying on children, and just about anything else!

 

3. Riverdale

 

Image result for riverdale

image via Moviephone

 

Riverdale is hot right now, and, no, I’m not talking about the steamy scenes. So if you’re addicted to the teenage, crime, mystery drama, and are thinking about going with a less horrifying costume, why not something from Riverdale? There’s a choice for everyone: the jock, the prep, the princess, the delinquent, and the serial killer too!

 

2. Edgar Allan Poe

 

Image result for edgar allan poe

image via Lansing State Journal

 

Edgar Allan Poe had a huge impact on writing and on numerous writers. Til this day he still remains a huge part of our culture and this year especially brought some well deserved attention to the master of macabre. There was not only a Pop figure of him created, but also several YA authors reimagined his work, translating his tales into the modern age. All of this just goes to show that Poe is loved more than ever before, so don his likeness this Halloween and you’ll be the talk of midnight, forever-more!

 

1. Good Omens (couple costume, because we know they are OTP!)

 

Image result for good omens crowley and aziraphale

image via Refinery29

 

Every Halloween party needs a good couple’s cosplay, but if you haven’t found the Crowley to your Aziraphale, your prayers could be answered this Halloween!

 

If none these costume ideas are book nerdy enough for you, you can always try your hand at creating an Em Dash costume.

 

Featured Image via The Fandomentals

8 Books About Descending into Madness Before ‘The Joker’ Comes Out

Before Todd Phillips sends in the clown and unveils The Joker on a silver screen this October 4th, let’s look through some of the some of the best books about absolutely losing your mind.

This movie is a tough cookie for us. Yes, it’s based partially on The Killing Joke, but what it’s taken from Alan Moore’s iconic graphic novel appears to just be a few bits and pieces (although I’m making a bet right now that the scene when the Joker goes on stage is the beginning to that horrific scene from The Dark Knight Returns), but besides that, the influences on Todd Phillips’ newest ‘comedy’ is mostly from old Scorcese films such as Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, Mean Streets, and King of Comedy.

So how do we talk about this film? Well, we’re going to do exactly what the title of this article says and go through the top eight greatest books about descending into madness. You know the meme.

 

Joker Meme

Image Via ME.ME

 

Well, turns out that society has always been pretty terrible, a hotbed for madness. But how mad is that madness? Let’s find out. Viewer discretion is advised.

 

 

8-Life of Pi by Yann Martel

 

I believe that whatever doesn’t kill you, simply makes you… stranger. – The Dark Knight

 

Life of Pi by [Martel, Yann]

Image Via Amazon

 

I know what you’re thinking: this is a book about a boy living on a boat with a tiger after a shipwreck, but is it?

Let’s start at the beginning: Pi was bullied by his peer relentlessly before writing out the square root of pi (well, as much as he could) in order to change his nickname from ‘Pissing Patel’ to ‘Pi.’ Thus, he faced society’s onslaught, and that’s only in the prologue.

Do things get better from there? Well, he was certainly one of the few survivors from a shipwreck but after that things get fuzzy.

He tells a writer he’s interviewing with that he survived on the lifeboat with a tiger, a spotted hyena, and a zebra with a broken leg. The hyena kills the zebra and the tiger kills the zebra, and Pi manages to befriend the tiger before returning to land. Pi is saved and the tiger escapes, wandering into the wilderness never to be found again.

But the official story is far worse. The survivors on the boat weren’t a zebra, a hyena, and a tiger, but rather Pi’s mother, a brutish cook, and Pi himself. The cook killed his mother and then Pi killed the cook, feasting on human remains and using other pieces as fish bait.

Which is the true story? Did Pi do the impossible and live on the water with a tiger, or did he go crazy and imagine a tiger to make himself feel better?

Maybe Pi did descend into madness and cannibalism, or maybe the tiger story is true, but either way he now lives in a world filled with those that doubt him.

 

7-Yellow wallpaper by Charlotte Gilman

 

They need you right now, but when they don’t, they’ll cast you out—like a leper. See, their “morals”, their “code”… it’s a bad joke, dropped at the first sign of trouble. – The Dark Knight

 

Image Via Amazon

 

An important early work of American feminist literature, due to its illustration of the attitudes towards mental and physical health of women in the 19th century.

Narrated in the first person, the story is a collection of journal entries written by a woman going through postpartum depression whose physician husband (John) decides to treat her by not treating her. He forces her to live inside a boarded up room where she is told to simply eat well and get plenty of air.

The only stimulus in this room, the only thing she can be interested in, is the room’s yellow wallpaper.

From there, her mind slowly unravels. She starts believing there are things behind or inside the wallpaper and, as she grows into madness, she starts chasing the wallpaper and creeping like a spider beside the wallpaper. Her life becomes this wallpaper.

This treatment was common during the early 19th century and, since the book was published in 1892, it shows a woman’s steady descent into madness thanks to society’s indifferent ignorance.

 

6-Catcher in the Rye by Holden Caulfield

 

The Catcher in the Rye by [Salinger, J.D.]

Image Via Amazon

 

The mob has plans. The cops have plans. Gordon’s got plans. Y’know they’re schemers. Schemers trying to control their little worlds. I try to show the schemers how pathetic their attempts to control things really are. – The Dark Knight

 

In case you haven’t read this book, Holden Caulfield is an outsider living on the brink of society. Everyone thinks he’s crazy, a drifter, but he rightly criticizes and critiques adults for their superficiality. ‘Phony’ is what Caulfield calls them, as he dreams to be a child again when times were simpler.

After spending a novel-length amount of time floating through the town, going largely unnoticed except when he’s mugged by a pimp, he ends up in an asylum. Yes, he pledges to get his life on track, but can we really believe him?

 

 

5-High-Rise by J B Ballard

 

When the chips are down, these…these civilized people, they’ll eat each other. – The Dark Knight

 

High-Rise: A Novel by [Ballard, J. G.]

Image Via Amazon

 

Following his divorce and the death of his sister, Dr. Robert Laing moves into the twenty-fifth floor of an apartment complex. From there, he’s continually bombarded with negative events, including a costume party he’s invited to where everyone mocks and degrades him. Eventually, he goes over the edge, not to spoil the plot, but it ends with cannibalism as the once-peaceful residents of the apartment complex descend into madness.

The similarities to the film should be obvious. Laing and Arthur Fleck are both beaten down by society and eventually crack, proving that the worst monsters don’t have sharp teeth and bear-like claws, but a human face and simple words and judgmental glares.

 

4-Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky

 

This is what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object. – The Dark Knight

 

Crime and Punishment by [Dostoyevsky, Fyodor]

Image Via Amazon

 

Rodion Raskolnikov is a law student who dreams of enforcing the law, but those morals go out the window because of poverty. Society has cast him out, and poverty forces this ex-student to kill an unscrupulous pawnbroker for her money.

After the murder, Raskolnikov is morally racked by his deed, tormented with confusion, paranoia, and disgust, forcing him deeper into poverty.

Poverty pushes him to kill, and once he’s killed his misery drives him deeper into poverty. This vicious cycle is one society forces on him, and with each passing moment he falls deeper and deeper into madness.

 

3-Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe

 

Why so serious? – The Dark Knight

 

Image result for tell tale heart amazon

Image Via Amazon

 

For some reason, there is a man who lives with an older man who has a ‘vulture’ eye. Why does he have a vulture eye? Does the vulture eye represent something? Is the man his father, his landlord, his master? Is the narrator a servant?

The exact circumstances are left unclear, but the narrator’s decent into madness isn’t.

After a carefully calculated murder, a ‘perfect crime,’ the narrator dismembers and disposes the body under the floorboards. Then the police came and they talk to the man about this unidentified old man. During the conversation, the narrator hears a a beating heart and grows concerned, then realizes that the police are openly mocking him, ignoring the heartbeat and watching him suffer.

The twist? It’s subtle, you might miss it, but the heartbeat the narrator hears isn’t the old man’s, but his own. Talk about madness.

 

2-Rats in the Walls by Lovecraft

 

It’s a funny world we live in. – The Dark Knight

 

Image result for The Rats in the Walls amazon

Image Via Amazon

 

After Delapore, an American, moves into an English estate, he and his cat start hearing the sounds of rats scurrying behind the walls. Finding himself in a society that doesn’t accept him because he’s a ‘foreigner,’ Delapore tries to find the truth about the rats behind the wall, but his psyche starts to unravel.

After a series of dreams, Delapore learns that his family maintained an underground city for centuries, where they raised generations of ‘human cattle’—some regressed to a quadrupedal state—to supply their taste for human flesh. Is this true, or is he simply mad?

Well, after, Delapore attacks and cannibalizes one of his few friends, he is locked in a mental asylum. This ends his reign of madness but he continues losing his mind, proclaiming that it was “the rats, the rats in the walls,” that ate the man.

The society that rejected him continues to do so given that the investigators of the case tear down the estate, covering it up and excluding one of their own officers after he goes insane as well. It truly is a funny world.

 

 

1-American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis

 

American Psycho

Image Via EdwardSexton.com

 

Does it depress you, commissioner? To know just how alone you really are? – The Dark Knight

 

A stockbroker in midtown Manhattan, Patrick Bateman lives in a world where people don’t talk to each other, don’t listen to each other, and don’t really know each other. People know him, but they don’t know the “real” him. He exists as a part of the crowd. He’s not rejected by society because that means they’d have to notice him.

This world of superficiality gets to him, and he turns full killer, or does he?

It’s the main question of the novel that no one, not even the author, can answer. At the end of the novel, he goes to the apartment where he’s killed numerous people to find it perfectly clean. Is this because he’s been hallucinating all these murders, or was the apartment cleaned because the owners doesn’t want a negative reputation to affect its resale value?

He killed a man, but then he’s told the man is on vacation. What’s happening here?

The answer is we don’t know because we don’t know the real Patrick Bateman, and we don’t know the real Bateman because he doesn’t know himself. It’s not a look into insanity, it’s us drowning in a world brought to us by a man who is utterly alone.

In this novel, we live and breath madness, and that’s about as close as the Joker’s world as we’re going to get…

 

…until the film comes out. Will you see it opening day, or will you be too busy cleaning up a murder scene that might not even exist?

 

 

Featured Image Via USA Today

YA Authors Reimagine Classic Poe Stories in New Collection

If you’re a fan of Edgar Allan Poe’s classic short stories, I’ve got good news for you. Thirteen highly celebrated YA authors have reimagined classic Poe stories in His Hideous Heart, a new collection edited by Dahlia Adler. Though Poe lived nearly two centuries ago, these reimaginings translate his tales into the modern age. And His Hideous Heart just came out today!

 

Image via Amazon.com

 

Here’s the lineup you can expect when you crack open a copy:

Dahlia Adler (reimagining “Ligeia”), Kendare Blake (“Metzengerstein”), Rin Chupeco (“The Murders in the Rue Morgue”), Lamar Giles (“The Oval Portrait”), Tessa Gratton (“Annabel Lee”), Tiffany D. Jackson (“The Cask of Amontillado”), Stephanie Kuehn (“The Tell-Tale Heart”), Emily Lloyd-Jones (“The Purloined Letter”), Amanda Lovelace (“The Raven”), Hillary Monahan (“The Masque of the Red Death”), Marieke Nijkamp (“Hop-Frog”), Caleb Roehrig (“The Pit and the Pendulum”), and Fran Wilde (“The Fall of the House of Usher”).

 

 

His Hideous Heart has already been getting some great reviews from all around the literary world. Publisher’s Weekly writes:

A refreshing assortment of diverse voices and contemporary themes ensures there’s something for everyone in this delightful compilation.

And Beth Revis, author of Give the Dark My Love and Star Wars: Rebel Rising raves:

Heartbreaking, thrilling, gruesome, and gorgeous: these stories will delight longtimePoe fans just as much as readers who haven’t read the classics.

As spooky season approaches, it’s definitely a must-have for any Poe fan. And any YA fan should definitely it have on their radar.

 

Image via Wikimedia

 

 

 

Featured image via Encyclopedia Britannica and Amazon

‘Killing an Evening With Edgar Allan Poe’ Returns to NY City

John Kevin Jones will be returning for the wonderfully titled Killing an Evening With Edgar Allan Poe.

 

Image Via SummonersEnsemble.com

 

Brought to you by the Summoners Ensemble Theatre, in association with the Merchant’s House Museum, this one-man show debuted last year with twenty-seven performances at the landmark 1832 Merchant’s House Museum.

 

John Kevin Jones

Image Via HollywoodSoapBox

 

John Kevin Jones will once again star. It’ll be tough to do this one-man play, even if he has done it twenty-seven times before, he’s a six-year veteran of A Christmas Carol at the Merchant’s House. He’s an expert at this.

 

Dr. Rhonda Dodd

Image Via directory.business.wsu.edu

 

Plus he’ll be joined by the director of A Christmas Carol at the Merchant’s House, Dr. Rhonda Dodd, who will direct this project as well.

 

 

Now that we know we are safe hands, we sit back and let ourselves get swept up in the horror.

 

Exterior-Merchant House Museum

Image Via BrownStoner

 

Like I said before, the play will be performed at the Merchant’s House Museum. This is splendid news and delightfully apropos, given that the Merchant’s House Museum, also known as the Old Merchant’s House as well as the Seabury Tredwell House, is Manhattan’s only 19th century family home to be preserved intact.

 

Edgar A Poe

Image Via Britannica

 

Edgar Allan Poe himself was a nineteenth century writer and literary critic. Born January 19, 1809 and died under strange circumstances in October 7, 1849, Poe became known after his death as the master of horror, mystery, and the macabre, and a pioneer of the short story.

 

Interior-Merchant House Museum

Image Via Timedout

 

The Merchant’s House Museum was formerly the home to the Tredwell’s, a prosperous merchant-class family. Given that the Tredwell’s are now long dead, it’ll only add to the creepiness of the show given that their once lively candlelit parlor will be set for a funeral, complete with coffin and draped mirrors.

Fitting, given that the show features live performances of Poe’s most infamous stories from The Tell-Tale Heart, The Pit and the Pendulum, The Cask of Amontillado, and, of course, The Raven.

 

 

Broadway World warns that “[a] bone-chilling evening of irrational revenge, obsession, premeditated murder, dismemberment, and the very, very dark awaits”.

Buy tickets here, if you dare. The Merchant’s House Museum located at twenty-nine East, Fourth Street in Manhattan, NY. Performances will run September 24th until November 3rd. For more information, please visit www.summonersensemble.org and www.merchantshouse.org.

 

 

Featured Image Via Biography.com

8 Really Strange Facts About Famous Authors

This may just be me, but when I read books I don’t usually dig deep into who the author is, like finding out their background or upbringing. But it is always fascinating to see who or what inspires great authors to write such profound pieces. So as I started to research some famous authors, I came across some odd facts about them; things I never would have expected to see. Often times, we think we know authors based on the literature they produce, but behind their names on the covers of their books lie some peculiar circumstances. These are some of the most interesting and/or unexpected ones I’ve come across!

 

1. Stephen King has triskaidekaphobia

 

king

Image Via Dread Central

 

The famed horror writer Stephen King has what is known as triskaidekaphobia, which is the irrational fear of number thirteen. In fact, he’s so terrified of it that he wouldn’t pause reading or writing if he’s on page thirteen or it’s multiples until he reaches a number deemed safe for him. Ironic, considering his fiction is known to consist of some horribly disturbing aspects, none of which are a mere number. “The number thirteen never fails to trace that old icy finger up and down my spine.” he said. “When I’m reading, I won’t stop on page 94, 193, or 382, since the sums of these three numbers add up to thirteen”.

 

2. J.R.R Tolkien loved pranks.

 

 

Image Via Time Magazine

The legendary author of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings trilogy was known to be a ruthless prankster. He actually once dressed as an axe-wielding Anglo-Saxon warrior and chased his neighbor. Quite a disturbing sense of humor.

Also, J.R.R. Tolkien opposed holding Catholic mass in English, to the extent that whenever the priests spoke the liturgy in English, he would loudly respond in Latin.

 

3. Dan Brown was a pop singer. 

 

Image Via ARRP

 

The author known for writing the Da Vinci Code, used to be a pop singer. He had once written a song about phone sex.

 

4. Edgar Allan Poe… where do we even start?

 

Edgar Allan Poe

Image Via Britannica

Edgar Allan Poe, king of the mystery story was also a very disturbed and conspicuous man. As a matter of fact, Poe became assistant editor of The Southern Literary Messenger in August 1835, but he was fired only within a few weeks for being drunk on the job. He returned to his home of Baltimore, where he got a license to marry his first cousin Virginia on September 22nd, 1835. He was twenty-six years old at the time, while she was only thirteen. Also, no one knows how he died, but theories abound, including suicide, murder, cholera, hypoglycemia, rabies, syphilis, and the flu.

 

5. William S. Burroughs shot his wife. 

 

 

Burroughs, the author of Naked Lunch, shot his wife in the head during a drunken attempt at playing William Tell. He had also once chopped the top part of his finger to give to his ex-boyfriend, but he instead presented it to his psychiatrist. He was then admitted to a private clinic.

 

 

6. Charles Dickens spent a lot of time in morgues.

 

Image Via The British Library

Most famous for writing A Christmas CarolOliver Twist, and David Copperfield, among many others, Dickens was so intrigued by dead bodies that he would spend a lot of his time at the Paris Morgue.

 

7. Maya Angelou was the first black woman to work as a cable car conductor in San Francisco.

 

Maya Angelou

 

As a teenager, Maya Angelou won a scholarship to study dance and drama but dropped out for a time when she was sixteen to become a cable car conductor.  She told Oprah Winfrey that she “saw women on the street cars with their little changer belts. They had caps with bibs on them and form-fitting jackets. I loved their uniforms. I said that is the job I want.” She was the first black woman to hold the position. She also spoke six languages.

 

8. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle believed in fairies.

 

 

The legendary author of the Sherlock Holmes books was tricked by two young school girls into believing that fairies actually exist. I don’t think I need to explain how ironic this is. The Cottingley Fairies became famous, after the girls claimed to have taken photographs of themselves with fairies. Conan Doyle used the photos in an article about fairies for .The Strand Magazine. Doyle was very spiritual, and thought the photos to be undeniable evidence of the existence of fairies.

 

 

Featured Image Via The Times