A Stir of Echoes - Richard Matheson

Another Matheson great.

 

Tom Wallace was placed under hypnosis one night at a party by his brother-in-law (unlike the movie).  When he awakes he finds that he is able to sense what other people are thinking and feeling, and he seems to have picked up a person from the past who finds his new openness a way to help solve a murder.

 

I found the hardest part for me was separating the movie from the book.  Normally this isn’t a problem but this was based in the ‘50’s, so I had to keep reminding myself of this.  You wouldn’t think it but trying to understand why they weren’t using a cell phone to call people is harder now that cell phones are the norm.  This is even from a guy who grew up with landlines.

 

Though time problems aside, I found this book to be a wonderful haunted house story, which is what I think is missing from a lot of horror novels of our day.  Yes, mostly it deals with ESP, but the ghost trying to make contact is prevalent and a key to the story.  But my original point stands, I think that there needs to be more haunted house novels in our genre today.  There is nothing more scary than going to bed wondering if there is some unseen person walking around in your livingroom.