Nightmare Alley

Nightmare Alley

by

, gothic, netgalley, novels, crime-novels-noir-thrillers, fiction-20th-century, literature, american-fiction, doug-n-kirk-said, crime-fiction, fiction, noir-environs, a-team-group-reads, noir-narcotics, fiction, 2021, kirk-recommended, a-jack-in-the-box-pop-surprise, 2017-books, sci-fi-fantasy, audiobooks, Fiction, Mystery, Horror, Classics, Novels, Thriller, Literature

Nightmare Alley begins with an extraordinary description of a carnival-show geek—alcoholic and abject and the object of the voyeuristic crowd’s gleeful disgust and derision—going about his work at a county fair. Young Stan Carlisle is working as a carny, and he wonders how a man could fall so low. There’s no way in hell, he vows, that anything like that will ever happen to him.

And since Stan is clever and ambitious and not without a useful streak of ruthlessness, soon enough he’s going places. Onstage he plays the mentalist with a cute assistant (before long his harried wife), then he graduates to full-blown spiritualist, catering to the needs of the rich and gullible in their well-upholstered homes. It looks like the world is Stan’s for the taking. At least for now.

Title:Nightmare Alley
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9781590173480
Format Type:

    Nightmare Alley Reviews

  • Jeffrey Keeten

    “How helpless they all looked in the ugliness of sleep. A third of life spent unconscious and corpselike. And some, the great majority, stumbled through their waking hours scarcely more awake, helpl...

  • Paromjit

    This is a vintage cult classic noir set in New York, which is receiving contemporary attention with the upcoming film release of the novel by William Lindsay Gresham, directed by Guillermo del Toro. S...

  • Ellie Spencer

    Rounded up from around 2.5 stars ⭐️ Nightmare alley follows the rise and fall of Stan Carlisle. Starting off in a Carnival, Stan wants to better himself and he uses his imagination and cunning to ...

  • Paul Bryant

    You know that old saying “if you can’t say something nice about a person don’t say anything at all” – if William Gresham really believed that he would have writtenNIGHTMARE ALLEYTHE END Ther...

  • Kiekiat

    I came across this novel browsing my bookshelves looking for a read to "jump out" at me. "Nightmare Alley" was the jumper. Like so many books I own, I could not remember why I had purchased it, or whe...

  • Hanneke

    What a very miserable American noir this is. There was not even a tiny moment of consolation throughout the story. I thought the novel interesting, but very depressing. Perhaps I’ll think differentl...

  • Dave Schaafsma

    And a film version in December 2021, just in time for the holidays, aw.A pretty miserable noir classic that out-Calvins Calvinism in its view of total depravity, at the site of a forties American carn...

  • Paquita Maria Sanchez

    Oh fuck yeyah. Some things I love: carny tales, equally comic and tragic spiral into substance abuse tales, cynical (some would argue "realistic") love stories, multi-character studies where the peopl...

  • Eddie Watkins

    Early reports from friends suggested that this was a lurid melodrama set in a carnival; a warped carnie fantasia with freaks foregrounded. While the first few chapters fit this description fairly well...

  • LA Cantrell

    Fans of illusion and noir, rejoice! I see this 1940s pulp novel in your future..Back in the day when hobos jumped freight trains and alkies slugged Sterno, traveling carnivals offered small-town delig...