Thursday, 1 November 2007

Booking through Thursday - Oh, Horror!

btt button
What with yesterday being Halloween, and all . . . do you read horror? Stories of things that go bump in the night and keep you from sleeping?
I don't read very much horror, I find paddling in gore a bit off-putting. However, I did decide that this year I would have a day's break from the rather more serious reading I've been doing in the last few weeks, and settled down to read Joe Hill's The Heart-Shaped Box last night. I'm pretty much on to the denouement now, and it will certainly be finished today. What have I thought of it? Well, there's been quite a lot of violence followed, naturally, by quite a bit of gore, and it's one of those books where it's all too easy to turn just one more page, but I can't say it's made me shriek with fright. If it had, I'd probably have given up on the spot! And I slept just fine, thank you.

Altogether, I really don't much like horror. A great deal of it seems to exist purely to explore the extent of degradation that can be imagined and, while I'm not really squeamish about blood and guts, I am upset by violence, both physical and psychological, and I don't want it in my head unless it's for a very good reason. But I will read the occasional book if it comes highly recommended.

Oh, forgot to say, why did I choose that particular book last night? Because Neil Gaiman said he liked it!

15 comments:

BooksPlease said...

I don't like blood and gore, or horror stories either. The stories I like are those spooky, eerie ones that have you wondering what's going on. Violence is just a turn-off and I don't like films where there's lots of fighting of any kind.

Mei said...

I feel the same way, except I would read a horror book as light reading :)
I too am turned off by violence and gore; I prefer cozy mysteries, mostly because they don't keep me awake at night!

Mei said...

Yikes! I meant I would NOT read horror for light reading! (How one little word can change a whole meaning ...)

Jaimie said...

I don't like the gore much either, which is why I never see horror films! Yuck!

heather (errantdreams) said...

"I don't read very much horror, I find paddling in gore a bit off-putting."

Keep in mind that gory stuff is only one type of 'horror.' Suspense, thriller, psychological horror---these things are all 'horror' as well. I'm always amazed by the number of people who say they hate horror who are narrowly defining the genre as gory stuff. I don't particularly like gore either, but I love horror---I just like the psychological, suspenseful, creepy stuff instead.

gautami tripathy said...

I don't think Horror can be defined as such. I have put my thoughts on my blog. So will not repeat as such.
I feel horror is much more its literal meaning!

Lesley (El Zed) said...

Hi there! It's not my first choice either - but I've read some great thrillers.

Chris said...

Not into gore either.

Melody said...

I don't mind reading horror stories, but I can't say the same for movies though! Happy BTT!

GeraniumCat said...

Booksplease, Mei, Melody, Jaimie, Lesley and Chris - I don't like violent films either, so horror films are usually out of the question. And I'm not good at creepy films, so that takes out the non-violent ones as well!

Heather and Gautami - there's some great writing that could be classed as horror. I like M.R. James, though he has one story that I absolutely hate, and Lovecraft has always been a favourite. They were the authors who gave me sleepless nights when I was young. More recently, though, some writers seem to feel the gore-fest is obligatory, but seeing some of the books that people have mentioned in their responses to this BTT, there are others who are trying to write interesting and subtle books.

LittleBrownDog said...

Know exactly what you mean about blood, guts and gore - I'm not partial either. Really enjoyed visiting your blog - thank you for popping into mine. Gorgeous, atmospheric picture of Roslin Castle!

Will definitely pop back now I've discovered you (and what a lovely name for a cat, by the way). I love all things literary, although I'm a very slow reader.

Allotment Lady said...

I too am an avid reader - I will read anything!

I did not include anything Halloween on the day on my website - but enjoyed reading others posts.

I can read about all sorts of horrors - but would probably not watch a film of the guts and gore ilk.

I am really enjoying reading your blog - and do not get the time to comment as often as I should!

Forgive me ?

GeraniumCat said...

Welcome to both littlebrowndog and allotment lady, I've been enjoying both your blogs for a while. AL, love your chickens, they look like such characters! Please give them greetings from the Bluebell Girls.

Literary Feline said...

I do enjoy reading some types of horror novels. I especially like books that bring out strong emotions in me, whether it be joy, sadness, anger or even fear. I know not everyone feels the same way though. I don't like the slasher/gory horror novels, but I do like a good psychological thriller. Understanding human behavior and what makes a person tick is a fascinating study to me.

GeraniumCat said...

Literary feline, I do agree that a good creepy thriller can be a pleasure - I've decided that, if I can wait that long, next Halloween I'll re-read Susan Hill's Woman in Black. It's so long since I read it that the only thing I can remember is that it was pretty scary!