Zuvembies and the Voo-Doo Man

Pigeons From Hell    by Robert E. Howard  (1938 Weird Tales)

Tuesday’s Tale of Terror  January 26, 2015



Come to the old south, to Blassenville Manor. Who doesn’t love a Southern Gothic horror story?  Blassenville Manor is long abandoned when two young men stumble upon this decaying mansion and decide to spend the night.

‘The old deserted house stimulated their imagination with its suggestion of antebellum splendor and ultimate decay. They left the automobile beside the rutty road, and as they went up the winding walk of crumbling bricks, almost lost in the tangle of rank growth, pigeons rose from the balustrades in a fluttering, feathery crowd and swept away with a low thunder of beating wings.

 ‘The oaken door sagged on broken hinges. Dust lay thick on the floor of the wide, dim hallway, on the broad steps of the stair that mounted up from the hall. They turned into a door opposite the landing, and entered a large room, empty, dusty, with cobwebs shining thickly in the corners.’


I won’t ruin the suspense (and this story is truly high suspense), but  I will say the story includes a secret room, People of Damballah, and yes, a hatchet-stroke in the dark.



In Danse Macabre, Stephen King’s nonfiction book about the horror genre, he writes that, Robert E. Howard’s Pigeons from Hell, is “one of the finest horror stories of our century.” See if you agree.

















Robert E. Howard fans favor his stories about explorer Solomon Kane and Conan the Barbarian. Weird Magazine fans revere him as one of the best in weird and fantasy fiction. At the age of thirty in 1936, he died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.





Read the short story (three parts) at Gutenberg.net.au.

Listen to the audio (1:19 hours) on YouTube.com

Watch the 50-minute film (adaptation), Boris Karloff’s Thriller Theater on YouTube.com

Visit the Robert E. Howard Foundation.


Don’t forget to view the INDEX above of more free Tales of Terror.

 This is a compendium of over 160 short stories by over 100 master storytellers of mystery,  supernatural, horror, and ghost stories.

 Join me in reading one short story every week!

 Comments are welcome.


Other Reading Web Sites to Visit


Books & Such   Bibliophilica    Lovecraft Ezine     HorrorAddicts.net  

Horror Novel Reviews    HorrorSociety.com

Monster Librarian     HorrorNews.net     HorrorTalk.com

 Rob Around Books      The Story Reading Ape Blog

For Authors/Writers:  The Writer Unboxed

February is Women in Horror Month.  Stop by for shorts stories by women authors for the entire month. And not just horror but mystery, supernatural, fantasy too.



Filed under classic horror stories, fiction, horror, horror blogs, pulp fiction, Reading Fiction, short stories, short story blogs, supernatural, suspense, tales of terror

10 responses to “Zuvembies and the Voo-Doo Man

  1. I know Robert E. Howard more for his “Conan the Barbarian” but more so through the Marvel comic books adaptation of the character. While I couldn’t get into the high fantasy comic books (Marvel’s to be specific), I’ve wanted to read the original novels since I sometimes read high fantasy prose fiction.

    I wouldn’t mind checking out the “Pigeons” story though, especially since horror is my favourite reading genre (up there with sci fi).

    I tried looking for some of Howard’s books in a couple of used-bookstores and the library but couldn’t find anything. I heard his books are hard to get a hold of. Maybe I’ll have to go the Amazon route. lol

    Great article, and thanks for the reference links!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. joejitzu

    Bought a Weird Tales paperback anthology when I was a teen that included “Pigeons From Hell.” I was mesmerized! Still think it’s one of the most frightening stories I’ve ever read. The first time I read it, I couldn’t have the book in the same room with me, couldn’t look at the cover, I was that scared. Since then, I’ve read that book dozens of times, and still get a thrill out of “Pigeons.”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. There was a Dark Horse comic book adaptation of this Howard story written by Joe R. Lansdale (the fellow who wrote the story the movie “Bubba Ho-Tep” was based on) back in 2008. It was updated to include more female characters and give the slave-master relationship a new twist.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jay

    Hi Paula,
    Thanks for the Robert Howard links. I have a very smart friend here at the office who, for my birthday last year, gifted me a collection of Conan stories that are in the order the stories were originally published (The Coming of Conan the Cimmerian). My friend is kind of the last person I’d expect to be a Conan fan, but I’ve read about 8 of the stories so far and have for the most part enjoyed them. Plus Howard is so ‘quotable’ when it comes to the clash between barbarism and civilization. I’m beginning to plot a campaign to be more barbaric in my corporate actions. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Reblogged this on Slattery's Art of Horror Magazine and commented:
    Fiction from Robert Howard, creator of Conan the Barbarian, via Paula Cappa.

    Liked by 1 person

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