Creepy Reading

I am a wimp. It doesn’t take much to raise the hair on the back of my neck. I’ve been this way as long as I can remember.

Some confessions.

In highschool I went to a birthday party where we watched The Exorcist. I spent much of the night sitting just out of view of the TV, striking up conversations with anyone, ANYONE who walked by. I didn’t see anything past the point where the little girl wets herself and I still spent the night in an uneasy sleep.

In my first year of undergrad, my residence held a night of scary stories. Although I was seated neatly tucked in amongst my friends, I still only lasted about three stories before bailing for the safety of my well-lit room.

I can’t even THINK about Ichabod Crane around Hallowe’en.

Recently, I’ve been trying to push myself to tolerate being a *little* scared. I read all the way to the end of the book. I watch the movies all the way through (in the mid-afternoon, only when it’s sunny). I think I’m getting better. Actually, as it turns out, I actually enjoy being a bit scared…but just the tiniest bit.

Since it’s almost Hallowe’en, I thought it fitting to recommend a few of the creepy stories I’ve enjoyed recently. I’ll save you my reviews and summaries but suffice it to say, you’ll be sleeping with one eye open.

Creepy Novel

Rosemary’s Baby

  • Wealth and power secured by Satan? Read the book before you watch the movie. Trust me.

Creepy Novella

Sudden Death Overtime

  • A fantastic short read, local author Steve Vernon tells a vampire story with a distinctly Canadian twist.

Creepy Young Adult

The Name of the Star

  • The first book in the Shades of London series by Maureen Johnson ties in murders, ghosts, and Jack the Ripper. It’s a triple threat.

Creepy Short Stories

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark

  • I first read this one in grade six. I signed in out of my classroom library during silent reading time. It scared my pants off and yet I remember checking it out more than once. Reading and re-reading the stories and spooking myself out with the terrifying and amazing illustrations. Recently, this book has been republished with more gentle illustrations so as not to be as frightening. (Read about it here.) While I think the illustrations contributed to the fright factor, a fraidy-cat like me would also do just fine with only the words and an over active imagination.

BOO!

4 thoughts on “Creepy Reading

  1. I like the fear/funny blend, e.g. Night of the Living Dead.

    Also, Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman’s “Good Omens, The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch” is a great example funny/scary.

  2. We just watched “The Cabin in the Woods” and it was fantastic! I also would recommend “Good Omens” (or pretty much anything that involves Neil Gaiman OR Joss Whedon).

    I have a mad love for horror movies and all things creepy. However, I do hate the “gore porn” and much rather prefer a clever, silly, or sans torture terror romp.

    If your looking for some excellent storytelling and no crazy blood letting, I suggest Guillermo del Toro’s “Pan’s Labyrinth” or “The Devil’s Backbone”. There’s also “Cronos”, but that’s a little more gory.

    Also K-Mont, is “Rosemary’s Baby” really a good book? I DESPISE the movie.

  3. Yes. Neil Gaiman and Joss Whedon are equally the best. Also, Pan’s Labyrinth is fantastic as well, although I always put that one more under fantasy than horror. I’ll have to check out the others.

    I really enjoyed Rosemary’s Baby (hence putting it on this list)! I hadn’t seen the movie when I read it though and I was also only vaguely aware of the plot so, overall, I found it a compelling read. None of it made me jump with fright but I did find it sufficiently creepy and the period-specific nuances (like the women’s responsibilities of running the household) really contributed to leaving me ill-at-ease. The impregnation (read: rape) chapter was especially eerie. That being said, perhaps knowing where it’s all going would make the whole story less enticing.

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