Tag Archive | Horror

Coraline- Neil Gaiman: 12/52 (Book a friend recommended )

In what twisted universe is this a ‘children’s book’?

Ok. Reading more about the book, it looks like the author started this off as a children’s book and then it turned out to be a children’s book for adults. And apparently, it scares the daylights out of only us adults, not children. And coming to think about it, all those Enid Blyton books where the toys in the nursery coming alive at midnight seemed so delightful at age seven, but the very concept does sound creepy now.

So. Coraline. The book that gives you disturbed sleep that’s filled with dreams of pale women coming at you with a needle and thread, trying to sew a button into your eye. Coraline is a strong, independent, inquisitive child. She doesn’t like it when people get her name wrong and she doesn’t like ‘recipes’. So on one bored rainy day, she explores her house and finds a door that opens into another world. A world where everything is the same, yet different. And different like you would never imagined.

In any situation, when you have two elderly spinsters living together, there is always a little room for crazy. The two ladies, the delightfully named Miss Forcible and Miss Spink who read Coraline’s tea leaves, give her a stone with a hole and later perform for dogs in the alternate universe, don’t disappoint you with the crazy. The mouse man, for some reason, I pictured as Mr.Heckles. But both him and talking cat I found to be a tad too predictable.

Towards the end, I felt sorry for the other mother though. All she wanted was a little girl of her own, one she could love, cook for and sew button eyes on. But I felt worse for the other father. Somehow, the father seemed to play the same role in both universes, a person just living life and going through the motions.

I don’t think I’ll be watching the movie, I liked they way I pictured things in my head while reading the book and I don’t want to spoil that. But I’ve finally discovered Neil Gaiman and the Ocean at the End of the Lane has come highly recommended as the next Gaiman that I should read. I’m not sure if I’m ready yet, but soon.

Growing up, I did live out my quota of Fantasy World. Like when I tried to stay up past midnight to see if the dolls come to life and such normal things. But this book reminded me of the creepiest thing I did as a kid. I beheaded a pretty little imported doll, a golden haired one named Bonnie that came with a tiny feeding bottle ( a gift from Mrs.Martin, a missionary, whom I remembered when reading about Miss Mitten in GOST) and buried the parts in a wooden chest while the road was being dug up and tarred. I don’t know why I did it, maybe I wanted the doll to go live in some alternate universe or maybe it was some repressed psycho killer tendencies that I was exhibiting. I should make that into a creepy little story like this someday.

PS: Thanks for the recco, The Visitor. I’m ticking this off my reading challenge now.

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Carrie- Stephen King : 19/52

Take a Mean Girls or a Vonnie and Monique or any high school story. Add a dash of darkness. Then add some more. And some more. Oh, empty the whole damn bottle of darkness into it. What do you get? A deliciously dark thriller that will keep you feeling deliciously dark.

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I started hating dogs when I read Cujo. Dogs hate me back. My cat Sajni still haunts me in my nightmares  with that Pet Sematary effect . Her last days were really sad and smelly. Now Carrie will make me Flex each time I see someone I hate. (o o I hate so many people)

The horror unfolds through a series of interviews, book excerpts, research studies and news articles. A sad little high school girl, a misfit with a freakishly religious nutcase mother. A gang of rich snob bullies with one of them growing a conscience. Boys. Root beer. Good gym teachers. A prom. Sounds all pink and frilly, doesn’t it? But then there’s also the colour of blood. Lots and lots of blood, different types of blood. There’s some eerie telekinetics that rains stones, turns on sprinklers and blows up gas stations.  Black Bibles. A dark closet where you repent for your sins. There’s sin and the punishment for sin. And when you close the book, kind of shaken up and feeling something in the pit of your stomach, you look at the chair in front of you and Flex.

I got this book as a similar to recommendation when I finished Dark Places. Stephen King’s first book, one he almost abandoned. It is kind of funny that the book was written in 1974 and set in the then future of 1979, but you don’t feel any time gap when you read it. It could have been set in 2014 and been as freakishly eerie as it was. I’ve rediscovered Stephen King now picked up Salem’s Lot and The Shining . Like Joey, maybe I should keep the books in the freezer until I start reading them.