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The Man in the Picture by Susan Hill
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The Man in the Picture (2007)

by Susan Hill

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
5294527,317 (3.57)160
  1. 30
    The Mist in the Mirror: A Ghost Story by Susan Hill (sardav64)
    sardav64: A short eery novella that is perfect for long cold autumn and winter evenings
  2. 20
    The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde (peleiades22)
  3. 10
    The Woman in Black by Susan Hill (jm501)
  4. 00
    The Haunted Hotel by Wilkie Collins (Jannes)
    Jannes: Ghosts in Venice? look no further.
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English (44)  Dutch (1)  All languages (45)
Showing 1-5 of 44 (next | show all)
Quick, spooky, creepy, little tale. Good for a rainy afternoon if you're in the mood. Told from the perspective of four narrators, it centers on a painting of a carnival in Venice and its disastrous effects on those whose hands it passes through. Interesting premise, if a little predictable. Enjoyable regardless. ( )
  trile1000 | Jul 1, 2018 |
Another excellent spooky ghost story, this one reminiscent of M.R. James' wonderful "The Mezzotint." Read straight through with barely a pause. ( )
  JBD1 | May 29, 2018 |
On a particularly bitter January evening, Oliver visits his former tutor, Dr. Theo Parmitter. As the two men sit by the fireside in the professor's rooms at Cambridge - sipping brandy and reminiscing - Oliver notices an unusual painting hanging on the wall. The seventeenth-century oil painting of masked revellers at a masquerade in Venice draws his eye and utterly fascinates him. Although Oliver asks about the painting, Theo seems extremely reticent about revealing too much about the strange picture.

In order to satisfy his former student's profound curiosity, the elderly professor decides to reveal the painting's dark secret. It seems that the ominously dark art of the Venitian scene - instead of imitating life - has the power to entrap it. In fact, the picture is capable of such malevolence, that Dr. Parmitter feels the need to issue a stern warning.

According to his esteemed former tutor, Oliver is dabbling in something he doesn't understand. Indeed, to even stare at the picture for a prolonged period of time is to court danger. Staring into the painting can be viewed as an invitation to all manner of unseen demons, and to become a victim of the painting's enthralling and macabre beauty.

This is actually the second book by Susan Hill that I have read. I must say that as much as I sincerely enjoyed reading The Woman in Black: A Ghost Story, I also enjoyed reading this book just as much. In my opinion, Ms. Hill is a tremendous writer. She creates such a wonderfully eerie atmosphere with her writing style; I found the plot to be intricately woven and chillingly satisfying. I give this book a definite A+! ( )
  moonshineandrosefire | Dec 21, 2015 |
A well written work with a plot that scared even my father. ( )
  Meepy | Aug 24, 2015 |
Now, it was the last week of the vacation and the college was quiet. We had eaten a good dinner, drunk a bottle of good claret, and we were stretched out comfortably in our chairs before a good fire. But the winter wind, coming as always straight off the Fens, howled round and occasionally a burst of hail rattled against the glass

After dinner with his former tutor Theo Parmitter in his rooms at Cambridge, Oliver agrees to listen to a strange story about a painting of the Venice Carnival hanging on Theo's wall, and the scene is set for a very Jamesian ghost story. It's a pity that nobody has the sense to burn the picture. Even Anne, who wishes she had destroyed the parcel without opening it, seems resigned to the picture's curse continuing into the next generation. ( )
  isabelx | Jul 16, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 44 (next | show all)
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Stephen Mallatratt

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The story was told to me by my old tutor, Theo Parmitter, as we sat beside the fire in his college rooms one bitterly cold January night.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
An extraordinary ghost story from a modern master, published just in time for Halloween. In the apartment of Oliver's old professor at Cambridge, there is a painting on the wall, a mysterious depiction of masked revelers at the Venice carnival. On this cold winter's night, the old professor has decided to reveal the painting's eerie secret. The dark art of the Venetian scene, instead of imitating life, has the power to entrap it. To stare into the painting is to play dangerously with the unseen demons it hides, and become the victim of its macabre beauty. By the renowned storyteller Susan Hill -- whose first ghost story, The Woman in Black, has run for eighteen years as a play in London's West End -- here is a new take on a form that is fully classical and, in Hill's able hands, newly vital. The Man in the Picture is a haunting tale of loss, love, and the very basest fear of our beings.
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A painting of masked revelers at the Venice carnival has a secret: to stare into the painting is to play dangerously with the unseen demons it hides, and become the victim of its macabre beauty.

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