“The Small Hand” tells the story of Adam Snow, a dealer in antiquarian books, and his encounters with a ghostly child’s hand which is placed within his hand on a number of occasions. As the intensity of the encounters escalates, we are left wondering how this story will end.
Susan Hill does not over burden the reader with copious descriptions, but is able to create atmosphere and tension with well chosen words and phrases. The sense of foreboding and suspense develops as the story progresses and is a hall mark of the classic, traditional ghost story.
I have read scarier ghost stories than “The Small Hand “, but I have rarely read one that is better written than this. As far as I am concerned, Susan Hill has mastered the art of writing the ghost story. As with all of her writing in this genre, the story is short – but perfectly formed, in my opinion. There are several unanswered questions that arise from reading the story, but these enhance it I think – one is left with plenty to think about!