Monday, April 23, 2012

Short Story Review: The Monkey's Paw by WW Jacob

book cover
Original Publication Date: 1902

Genre: horror

Topics: wishes, unintended consequences


Another audiobook from Ralph Snelson, aka the bossest reader on Librivox and the person I'm currently stalking.

Do I really need to tell you what a story called The Monkey's Paw is about? The Whites are a happy if boring family, until one day when a friend of Mr. White's, a Sergeant-Major, shows up out of blue and is like, "Hey, look at this monkey's paw I got in India! It's supposed to grant three wishes, but it's really dangerous. You guys don't even know." Then he tries to throw it away, except naturally the Whites pick it up because they want to try it out. The Sergeant's like, "Your funeral!" and leaves. Wow, what a great friend.

Is this going to end badly? You know it.

you damn dirty ape

The Monkey's Paw is probably a little predictable and cheesy by now, especially considering how many adaptations there have been of it, but I personally think it's worth reading. It's a very well-told story, where people destroy their own lives through the innocent things they wish for. Plus there's incipient zombieism!

I found this short story to be pretty creepy, mainly because I would have totally wished on that monkey's paw. Seriously, if someone hands you something and tells you it grants wishes, how can you NOT test that out? But it's like Karl from An Idiot Abroad says: "Never wish for anything. You'll just end up being disappointed."

Also, monkeys are scary.

Find The Monkey's Paw at Librivox|Gaslight