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Claires Court

Claires Court Maidenhead

from Nursery to Sixth Form

William Hussey Chills Spines

Spines were chilled at Claires Court this week when Carnegie-shortlisted author William Hussey gave his presentation on horror fiction to Year 9 girls and boys. William is an English author who lives in Skegness, Lincolnshire. As a child, he loved horror comics, which inspired his writing today.

The session to celebrate World Book Day started with a reading from his novel ‘Haunted’, told in darkness, in the author's unique eerie style.

Blood certainly ran cold, and it had nothing to do with the weather!

William also gave the group an explanation of the history of horror fiction, from old folk stories now sanitised by Disney and the origins of gothic horror in English literature, to Bram Stoker's Dracula, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, the works of Edgar Allan Poe and the advent of cinema and early horror films. Senior Boys even reenacted a face-off between Van Helsing and Dracula himself!

The Year 9 pupils were also initiated into the deceitful practices of 17th century witchfinders, such as English 'Witchfinder General' Matthew Hopkins. William Hussey thoroughly researched the subject for his own Witchfinder series, which included torture and intimidation... practices still seen in some societies today.

William ended the session with his short story ‘Turn Her Face to the Wall’... we’ll never look a doll's house in the same way again!


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