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Old 08-05-2003, 10:17 AM
AuntiePam is offline
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Join Date: Aug 1999
Posts: 18,119
Avalonian, I tried Ordinary Horror but put it down about halfway through. I'm definitely okay with low-key, creepy, psychological horror, but this one didn't work for me. About the third or fourth time he put lemons in the garbage disposal, I gave up.

I haven't found anything "truly scary" in horror fiction for quite awhile. The new writers (most of them) are so over the top, they're almost laughable. You find yourself going "ew" or "gimme a break" when you should be going "ahhhhh".

I was very creeped out by a scene in a fantasy book I'm reading now, The Hidden Warrior, sequel to The Bone Doll's Twin by Lynn Flewelling.

One of the characters has encountered a ghost (not for the first time). There was no lengthy atmospheric buildup to the scene, and all the ghost did was turn around and look at the character, "face shifting to an angry mask", and I was outta there.

What made that scene work for me was that this ghost is a mystery. We don't know what she's up to, whether she's evil or misunderstood, whether or not she has the power to hurt anyone even if she wanted to.

The new writers are all out describing and explaining everything -- they're not giving their audience any credit at all.

I do have to admit that I don't care for most of the contemporary horror novelists, so they could be writing scary stuff and I'm missing it.

There were good scares in The Shining, like everyone says. Also Ghost Story by Peter Straub and The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson will make you turn on the lights.

Oh, and Burnt Offerings -- the one by Robert Marasco. not the Laurell Hamilton.