Fiction · Heather D · Horror · In the Library · SCC Book Club · Suspense

The Shining | by Stephen King

The Shining by Stephen King
(Anchor Books, 2013, 659 pages)

The Shining is a story of a man named Jack Torrance who is a recovering alcoholic. As the means to support his wife, Wendy, and son, Danny, he has taken a job as caretaker of the Overlook Hotel which is tucked away in the Colorado Mountains. As the snow sets in, he and his family are cut from the rest of the world. Jack has to keep his mind clear to keep from going stir crazy and doing the unthinkable. But will he??

Stephen King did terrific job with this novel. The story was so descriptive to the point that it left nothing to the imagination and that is what scared me the most. I felt as though I was right there inside the Overlook Hotel watching as the events unfolded.

Not only is this a gripping story but also the characters are well developed and it was easy to understand why they reacted to certain situations the way that they did. I felt the way he portrayed the relationship between Danny and his parents had a very powerful effect on the story as a whole. It made the events that much more disturbing and bothersome.

This book was part of the SCC library’s book club and had it not been for that reason I would have not picked this book up to read. I am not a fan of horror books. That being said, I am not disappointed that I was brave enough to read a story that had me on edge from beginning to end. Stephen King is an amazing storyteller and I would recommend this book to anyone who gets a thrill from spooky stories with nail biting suspense that makes you hear and see things that aren’t really there… or are they???

Fiction · Horror · In the Library · Mystery · Short Stories · Suspense · Theresa F

Don’t Look Now & Other Stories| by Daphne du Maurier

Don't Look Now

Don’t Look Now & Other Stories by Daphne du Maurier
(Penguin Books, 2006, 272 pages)

I’m a fan of Daphne du Maurier and can’t believe it took me this long to read some of her short stories. This collection is very creepy in a subtle way. Du Maurier wrote the short story that the movie “The Birds” was based on, and while that story is not in this collection, it gives you an idea of the tone of these stories.

“A married couple on holiday in Venice are caught up in a sinister series of events. A lonely schoolmaster is impelled to investigate a mysterious American couple. A young woman loses her cool when she confronts her father’s old friend on a lonely island. A party of British pilgrims meet strange phenomena and possible disaster in the Holy Land. A scientist abandons his scruples while trying to tap the energy of the dying mind.

Collecting five stories of mystery and slow, creeping horror, Daphne Du Maurier’s Don’t Look Now and Other Stories showcases her unique blend of sympathy and spine-tingling suspense.” – Amazon.com

Audiobook · Fiction · Horror · Humor · Kelly M · Young Adult

Evil Librarian | by Michelle Knudsen

Evil Librarian

Evil Librarian by Michelle Knudsen
(Candlewick Press, 2014, 346 pages)

There’s a new librarian at Cynthia and Annie’s high school, and he’s super good-looking. When Annie starts to fall for Mr. Gabriel, Cynthia senses that something isn’t right about this librarian. And she’s right—he’s a demon. While Cynthia deals with her best friend becoming more and more strange and aloof as she spends time with Mr. Gabriel, she is also working hard leading the tech team for the school’s musical, Sweeney Todd, about a demon barber who kills his clients with a sharp razor as they wait for a close shave. With the assistance of Ryan, Cynthia’s long-time crush who’s playing Sweeney in the musical, Cynthia has to find a way to get Annie out of the grasp of the evil Mr. Gabriel, who has already likely killed a couple of teachers who got in his way.

The audio version of this young adult novel kept me on the edge of my seat (literally) and looking forward to the next time I was in the car to listen to it. It was a nice combination of horror, humor, and all the normal things teenagers experience with their teachers and friends (well, maybe not totally normal). Other reviewers have compared it to the television show Buffy the Vampire Slayer, which I’ll have to check out next.

Fiction · Horror · Mystery · Theresa F

The Winter People | by Jennifer McMahon

The Winter People

The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon
(Doubleday, 2014, 317 pages)

The Winter People was spooky, the characters were interesting, had flashbacks, and the ending was pretty good; all the things I like in a book!

“West Hall, Vermont, has always been a town of strange disappearances and old legends. The most mysterious is that of Sara Harrison Shea, who, in 1908, was found dead in the field behind her house just months after the tragic death of her daughter, Gertie. Now, in present day, nineteen-year-old Ruthie lives in Sara’s farmhouse with her mother, Alice, and her younger sister, Fawn. Alice has always insisted that they live off the grid, a decision that suddenly proves perilous when Ruthie wakes up one morning to find that Alice has vanished without a trace. Searching for clues, she is startled to find a copy of Sara Harrison Shea’s diary hidden beneath the floorboards of her mother’s bedroom. As Ruthie gets sucked deeper into the mystery of Sara’s fate, she discovers that she’s not the only person who’s desperately looking for someone that they’ve lost. But she may be the only one who can stop history from repeating itself.” – Amazon.com

Fiction · Graphic Novel · Horror · Julia P · Quick Read! · Thriller

The Walking Dead: Book Two | by Robert Kirkman

The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead: Book Two by Robert Kirkman
(Image Comics, 2012, 304 pages)

I’d been meaning to pick up The Walking Dead: Book Two ever since I finished reading Book One for last year’s Between the Covers book club. When I saw it just sitting on the shelf I couldn’t resist picking it up. This book picks up where Book One left off. The group of survivors, led by Rick, has found a prison that they’re hoping to use as their home base. They first have to make sure the area has been cleared, but the fenced in grounds and all the space make it seem like they may have found a place where they can survive.

I don’t want to give too much away so I’ll keep things vague. In this book the reader is introduced to a few new characters, an inmate named Axel and sword-wielding Michonne. The small group is still trying to figure out the new world they live in and emotions have a tendency to run high when you feel like you’re constantly fighting to stay alive so there are is a fair amount of relationship drama in this book.

I’ll definitely be picking up Book Three. I’d recommend reading the graphic novels if you’re a fan of the show – they offer up a different experience for you as a reader.

Audiobook · Classic · Fiction · Horror · In the Library · Sadie J · Suspense

Carrie | by Stephen King

Carrie

Carrie by Stephen King
(Pocket Books, 2005, 253 pages)

Carrie has always been the outcast in school and her mother has not helped things along the way. Carrie’s mother is extremely religious and has tried to control Carrie’s sinning so that she never becomes a woman to the point that Carrie is frequently locked in her “closet” to pray. Her peers at school are always finding reasons to pick on Carrie so there is no one for Carrie to turn to when she discovers she has telekinetic powers. Instead, she just gets angrier at all the people in her life and is convinced that they are trying to trick her. But when Sue Snell convinces her boyfriend Tommy to ask Carrie to the prom as a way to make up for the horrible things they’ve done to her, Carrie reluctantly agrees to the date but has her guard up and her powers ready if this turns out to be just another one of their mean tricks.

This is one of those classic stories that I had never read or seen the film. I’m extremely glad I finally got around to reading this and was impressed when I learned that this was King’s first published novel. I listened to this on audiobook (thanks Kelly!) and the thing I enjoyed most about it, besides the great narration by Sissy Spacek, was the introduction by King. I loved hearing about the inspiration for the book and how he originally threw the first few pages away before his wife saved them from the trash. Now I will have to watch the film, but the original not the remake.