In the novel, doctor Louis Creed takes a job at the University of Maine Infirmary and moves his wife, daughter and two-year-old son Gage into a house by a busy interstate. The audience gets to see exactly how it all went down, and Brooks’ gift is in making it all seem so reasonable, because he considers every possible eventuality. Take 'em out, and this is a 5 star collection all the way! I also re-read a few of the shorter stories I had read before (The Tell-Tale Heart, The Monkey's Paw, and The Lottery). There were always these rumors that someone had been murdered … And what if a child were killed, too, then came back changed (and not for the better)? Beyond? (Would have been. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Or... just read this book. Blatty’s text has the time and space to better establish all of its key players, specifically Father Damien Karras, layering on the dread long before the pea soup starts flying. However there are some gems here, my favorites being Stevenson's "The Bottle Imp", Well's "The Country of the Blind," excellent, and the closer Shirley Jackson's. —Steve Foxe, Victor LaValle cites Shirley Jackson as an influence, and that lineage is easy to identify in this literary piece that’s as much about institutional failings as it is about the bison-headed devil wandering the halls of a mental institution. Or is the kids’ current ward simply going batshit bonkers? Swan Song, which tied with Stephen King’s Misery for a Bram Stoker Award for best novel, is a 960-page magnum opus of apocalyptic fiction that feels a bit too familiar in 2018. Just watch a neglected, misshapen child pushed to the bottom of a lake evolve into a vengeful teenager dismemberment machine, and Friday the 13th takes on a whole new flavor after reading this terrifying trailblazer. The titular Coraline, a plucky youth bored of her hyper-domestic parents, assumes the modern incarnation of Alice, crossing the looking glass into a far less hospitable wonderland. This story within a story within a story relays a nameless host’s discovery of a manuscript about a poor woman hired to watch two bizarre adolescents. Opposed at nearly every turn by the institutional roadblocks erected in the path of female FBI trainees, the reader can sense the desperation of Starling and her borderline selfish desire to stand out and prove herself to her entirely male superiors. They reflect innermost fears and head for spaces where reality is blurred by imagination, where insanity and madness are shrouded in mystery and where humanity is haunted by repressed passion and obsession. Two young girls, one extraordinary and one suffocating under her own feelings of mediocrity, connect online and form a friendship that will have terrible consequences. With its sun-bleached setting, The Elementals is a sweltering read for horror fans and a potent reminder of the generation of talent lost to the AIDS epidemic.
These stories creep and crawl and slither across your bedroom floor. Published in 1983, The Woman in Black is best known today for inspiring one of the longest-running plays in London’s West End (and a Daniel Radcliffe movie). I don't know if these are the. —Steve Foxe, Gore Verbinki’s 2002 American adaptation of Koji Suzuki’s 1991 novel Ring utterly reshaped American horror cinema, ushering in a wave of J-horror imports, remakes and knockoffs and helping make the image of a ghostly Japanese woman with slick black hair ubiquitous the world over. Despite a suggestion of the supernatural, it is the violence committed by very ordinary young people that will stick with you long after you’ve finished Little Star. —Tyler Kane, H.P. He shows us how the infection could realistically spread around the globe thanks to human trafficking. Piercing and In the Miso Soup are similarly disturbing tales from this master of Japanese thrillers. While most of the horrors awaiting the ship’s crew are all-too-real—shrinking rations, scurvy, bitter cold—there’s a looming supernatural presence driving the survivors farther from civilization and any hope of rescue. —Tyler Kane, In an episode of Louie, the now-disgraced comedian declines carrying his daughter’s heavy backpack, explaining, “I would never take your burden. Rumors among King’s fans suggested that the book was too frightening to publish, the sort of death-saturated manuscript you had to read wearing rubber gloves. Stephen King sought out the author on Twitter to recommend one more: T.E.D. That could at least be dealt with in ways accessible to adults. Indeed, The Turn of the Screw unintentionally advertises its most sensual points of conflict. When she arrives at his impressive estate, she finds herself at the mercy of a housekeeper who remains fiercely loyal to the widower’s late wife, and has no hesitance in making that clear to the protagonist—or in undermining the protagonist’s confidence and sense of security however possible. —Steve Foxe, The titular phrase “a choir of ill children” is used four or five times throughout the late Tom Piccirilli’s haunting Southern Gothic, first in reference to the off-kilter musicality of protagonist Thomas’ three brothers (conjoined at the head) speaking in unison. —Steve Foxe, Frankenstein isn’t just an iconic horror novel; it’s a complete shift in perspective of what horror is and can be. The stories that really interested me are The Tell-Tale Heart and The Lottery. Need another excuse to treat yourself to a new book this week? What the novel also does particularly well is make us probe into the motivations and ambition of Starling, going beyond her desire to simply help people and catch a killer. Where The Shining Girls focused more on one resilient survivor, Broken Monsters spreads its narrative love a little more evenly, finding a handful of struggling heroes eking out a living in America’s most emblematic capitalist failure.