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Pigeons from Hell by Robert E. Howard

Pigeons from Hell (1976)

by Robert E. Howard

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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Wow! One of the best pulp/horror stories I have EVER read. Nice twisty ending. I'm going to pick up Howard's entire horror collection.

ps. I picked this up as a free e-book on the internet. Dinosaurs have nothing to with the story as the illustration above implies. Just axe hatchets, snakes, wolves, staircases, whistling entities, voodoo and Pigeons (from hell)! ( )
  imaginationzombie | Sep 28, 2014 |
Typical Robert E, Howard fare, by which I mean excellent story-telling and in a straight-forward, no-nonsense style!

The title story of this collection is a very effective "haunted house" horror story - very creepy. Funnily enough, I was listening to the Pretenders' song, Back on the Chain Gang last night and realised that this story is most likely the source of a lyric that has always puzzled me: Got in the house like a pigeon from Hell: surely that phrase couldn't have occurred to two people independently! I'm still not sure how it relates to the rest of the song, though.

Anyway, the rest of the stories are a mixture of historical adventures, atavistic throw-backs, Cthulhu Mythos and Western horrors. He uses the motif of a modern man haunted by the memories of an ancient ancestor several times in this collection, which is probably a reflection of the time pressures he was under to create stories to meet deadlines for his magazine publisher. However, the stories themselves are sufficiently different that the reuse of this plot device can be forgiven.

I was really looking forward to reading the story that featured the Tyrannosaurus Rex and Pterosaur which grace the cover of my edition, but they don't make an appearance within - what a gyp!

I've got a number of other REH books which I've had shelved To Read for the last 15-20 years or so. This year may well be the year when I make some headway into them! ( )
  Michael.Rimmer | Mar 30, 2013 |
Review from Badelynge
First published in 1938 not long after R.E.Howard's suicide, Pigeons from Hell is a Gothic Horror tale set in the deep south of the USA. Two friends decide to spend the night in an abandoned old plantation house. The story eschews the more traditional slow build of atmosphere and tension, choosing instead to scare the pants off you in the first few pages. It certainly succeeds. The rest of the story's fear is generated by apprehension about returning to the old deserted house that has already demonstrated its terrors. It is superbly told and very creepy. It also features one of Howard's recurring characters Kirby Buckner. If I was assembling a reading list to use for developing a horror writing style I'd certainly think about including this one. ( )
  Finxy | Mar 26, 2010 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Robert E. Howardprimary authorall editionscalculated
Jones, JeffreyCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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This is an anthology and should NOT be combined with the individual stories it contains or with other anthologies that do not contain the same sub-works.
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