Full disclosure: this is my desert island book. Clive Barker (my future husband) displays the fecundity of his imagination by creating a dark fantasy epic on the scale of Tolkien full of deliciously sacrilegious subtext. The characters and scenes within have woven themselves into my psyche never to be unraveled. Thank Goddess.
At a sanatorium just outside Buenos Aires, where patients are living out their last days, Dr. Quintana and his colleagues have signed up to participate in a medical research project, which concerns the minutes just after death. They just need a few volunteers. An excellent translation of a horror novel, which is also darkly funny.
This is hands down one of the strangest books I've ever had the pleasure of reading. It's a funny, disturbing, confusing and down right weird story told through the eyes of an over-the-top dramatic narrator who undermines her credibility from the start. It's a campy and quirky horror story that will have you laughing and mumbling "WTF" to yourself until the very end.
This story revolves around 14-year-old Marjorie, the eldest of two sisters and her increasingly bizarre and erratic behavior. Is it the onset of mental illness or full on demonic possession?? This books sends up the exhausted tropes of past exorcism tales whilst exploiting them to the benefit of the reader. It is a witty and creeptastic read with an homage to Shirley Jackson that left me reeling.
Broadly speaking, I don't like Manga (sorry, not sorry), though Junji Ito has proven to be the exception, His tales are never dull, at times retch-inducing, and always ghastly. What more could a girl ask for??
Woof. I couldn't put it down. The premise is simple, the themes all too relevant. From the start I cared for the characters, had my stomach clenched throughout the meat of it, and shed a tear at the end. It's horror with a heart!
Look, I cannot even begin to describe the fleshy gloriousness that is this book. Please...just dive in.
This book is like Eileen meets A Confederacy of Dunces meets Sleep Away Camp, set against the backdrop of a possibly haunted boys orphanage. Come for the overly articulate but woefully unaware teenage narrator, stay for the Devils Backbone meets Lord of the Flies vibe.
You might fall in love with Merricat Blackwood, the murderous narrator of this atmospheric, chilling read. You might enjoy the off-kilter, simple - not spare - language Jackson used to craft her story. Or you may simply eat up this delectable table of treachery, magic, madness, and posen.
I credit Adam at the Lake Forest Park store, for introducing me to Robert Aickman. At the time, Cold Hand in Mine was not in print, but his books of "strange stories" are now in wonderful paperback editions by Faber & Faber. The terrors within these pages are subtle and disquieting. Aickman has been compared to Algernon Blackwood and M.R. James, but he may even be better those those acknowledged masters of unsettling fiction. These timeless and creepy stories are extremely well-written and I want to do my part to ensure that Aickman finds the reading audience that he deserves.