Alfred Hitchcock Presents: Stories for Late at Night

by Alfred Hitchcock (Editor)

Hardcover, 1961



(30 ratings; 3.8)

User reviews

LibraryThing member EmScape
The stories in this collection aren't all ghost stories, like one would expect, although some of them are. Some are also science fiction and others are murder mysteries. The common thread is, of course, that they are frightening. They didn't give me nightmares or anything, but I did find myself revisiting the tales in my mind at other times of the day.
Along with short stories, the volume also contains two novelettes and one full-length novel. Vintage Season, the first novelette, I enjoyed the most of any other tale in this book. A man rents his home to some very unusual guests, with unexpected consequences. To say any more would be to give it away. I highly recommend it.
The novel comes at the end of the book, and after reading through various short stories which can always be set aside and picked up again later, to find something which contains chapters was a bit disconcerting. Also, I though the novel quite lengthy; the plot of which could probably have been quite a bit condensed.
Overall, however, each of the tales has merit and an actual ending. The conclusions to the stories are all very satisfying, which for me is very important. I highly recommend you spend some time checking them out (late at night).
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LibraryThing member jseger9000
A nice selection of stories. There are suspense stories along with supernatural horror and some that don't fit any other category than Weird Tales. While there were a few duds (unfortunately the very first story is one of them), I get the feeling that some of my favorites would be others flops and vice-versa. I guess what I'm trying to say is that none of the stories (even ones I didn't care for) felt like filler.

Also, at an average of twelve to fifteen pages, they were just long enough to read right before bedtime (though there were two forty-ish page novellas and a one hundred and fifty page novel included in the mix).

There were a number of 'big names' represented (Ray Bradbury, John Collier, C.L. Moore), but I found a number of my favorite stories were from authors I was unfamiliar with (Jerome Bixby's "It's a Good Life", Will F. Jenkins' "Side Bet" and Philip MacDonald's "Our Feathered Friends"). The stories from famous authors weren't sub-par though. Ray Bradbury's "The Whole Town is Sleeping" is probably the creepiest story in the book and Henry Sleasar's "A Cry From the Penthouse" is an excellent little thriller that reminded me of Stephen King's "The Ledge" (though "A Cry From the Penthouse" is the older story).

I enjoyed this collection immensely and have already ordered Alfred Hitchcock Presents: Stories That Scared Even Me and Alfred Hitchcock Presents: Stories Not For The Nervous.
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LibraryThing member TheBentley
What a shame that this book is out of print! A thoroughly enjoyable collection of horror, science fiction, and thriller stories, many of them adapted for television on the great thriller shows of the 60's like Alfred Hitchcock Presents and The Twilight Zone. An outstanding mix of stories of different tones and genres, all excellent. The final story, really more of a novella, is a bit long for this collection, especially when one considers how many more various stories could have replaced it, but still an exceptional collection. If you're a fan of short stories writers like Roald Dahl and Shirley Jackson, you will love this collection, most of all because the stories that appear here are not reprinted to death, and you've likely never read them, even if, like me, you're a fan of the genre who despairs that you've read all the good stuff.… (more)
LibraryThing member athenaharmony
I really enjoyed this collection of stories. I thought there was an excellent balance when it came to the length of the stories, with longer ones generally coming after a number of shorter ones. This made it ideal for reading on the bus to and from work, as I never really found myself at that awkward stage of only having 2 or 3 more pages to go but being unable to finish a story before having to be somewhere. The stories are quick reads and quite interesting, though some are predictable (Bradbury's contribution, for example, reminded me strongly of a child's campfire story). All are well-written and generally stay away from the truly "scary" section of the horror/mystery genre. Nothing in this book is likely to give anyone nightmares, unless that person is a child or an especially sensitive and/or imaginative adult.

I also enjoyed the chance to read stories by authors who aren't "big names." "It's a Good Life," written by a man whose name I'd never heard, was particularly interesting and haunting to me. Overall, a great collection of stories for those who like mysteries, the supernatural, and horror.
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Random House (1961), 469 pages

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