Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Do You Fear Horror?

I sat down to write a review for a recent request the other day. I will sometimes physically write out my reviews before typing them up and posting them here. Well, in the process of writing the review, I found that I had went completely off on a tangent and decided to post the short blurb separately in the hopes of generating some discussion on this topic. Despite your reading preferences, I will be curious to hear your thoughts on this subject matter!


Ahhhh . . . the horror genre! Why does it tend to have such a bad reputation? For me, it has always been one of my favorites and one that I tend to gravitate back to often. I hear people say, “Why do you read such scary stuff?” or “How can you stand to read those books and still sleep at night?” or “Why do that to yourself?” I won’t deny that I’ve been scared by some of these books. I’ve had to put books aside a few nights when I’ve been home alone. And, I’ve been jumpy at sounds of the house settling or the cicadas making their racket outside! For me, fear is the emotional or mental state that many avoid. For these authors of horror, they get these fears out in the open and delve deep into them, publicly nonetheless. They normalize the fears and they explore the worst of the worst. They may scare me, but because of them, I do sleep better at night (on the whole!) knowing that I’m not alone in my fears.


Do you read horror? Why or why not?


  1. Interesting topic! I don't read horror books any longer because so many of them are simply too gory. Like the current crop of horror movies, they seem to go for shock-value instead of real horror. I like the older horror books and movies, where so much was left up to your imagination. It's scarier to imagine something in the basement than it is to be told/shown what's actually down there. And speaking of what's hiding down in the basement, I have actually gone down there after reading a scary book to make sure all of the windows are locked! *L*

  2. You would not be alone in checking those windows!! :) It's so funny because I just posted a review of a new horror book that did leave things up to the imagination and it was pretty freaky. It was called Dark Worlds: Project 31 by Zack Daggy.

    Anyways, I completely agree with you! I taught an elective class one year at a college on the evolution of horror films and we discussed that very thing . . . that horror = gore in recent films (Saw is the first that comes to mind). I don't find them as scary . . . more gross than anything else!

  3. I was just thinking about this recently. I think that childrens' and YA suspense or dark fantasy fictions relate to old school horror films in that they manage to scare you with your own fears and not with gore or excessive violence. BTW, I absolutely love old horror films! But I don't watch horror movies made past the early 1960s. And I don't read modern horror books since I gave up on Dean Koontz many years ago. I will stick with the classics like Dracula and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde!

  4. Ahhh, the classics!! I've had a copy of Shirley Jackson's The Haunting of Hill House on my shelf for a couple of years now! Yet another reason to get to that TBR pile!!


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