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Scary Books.

We are officially in the Boo season.

This time of year, we watch scary movies, like Psycho, the multitude of Halloween and Freddie movies.

Dress up in all manner of scary costumes, and read scary books. 

Recently I was asked to provide a scary line from the scariest book I’d ever read. Well, Stephen King’s Pet Sematary was certainly the scariest book I’ve ever read. With King’s Christine and Cujo distant seconds.  Pet Sematary freaked me out so bad that I got rid of the book after I read it. I didn’t want any bad juju in the house. Have no doubt, after I read Christine I gave every red car the stink eye. And, when that movie Beethoven came out and the St. Bernard started slobbering, it was all I could do to keep from standing up in the theater and yelling, mad dog everybody run. I am a great fan of some of Stephen’s books so a while back I decided to purchase the ones that I think of as keepers.  Pet Sematary of course was on the list. So you know, I put it in a plastic bag inside a lead lined wooden box just in case there was any bad juju inside. Last week I took the box outside, opened it and… big sigh here… gratefully no green fog came out of the plastic bag when I retrieved the book. I sat (outside) and started looking for a scary sentence only to realize there really wasn’t any scariest sentence. The whole thing is creepy.  Each of King’s sentences, paragraphs and pages builds the horror. When I read it, I remember knowing what was going to happen and hoping it wouldn’t.  Reading Christine and Cujo was like watching a train wreck. I could not put the dang books down.

The copy of Pet Sematary I have now has an intro written by King in 2000. In it, he says he is frequently asked what he thinks is the scariest book he’s written and he answers Pet Sematary. After he wrote it, he let it sit for six weeks and when he read it again found it so gruesome he put it away. He had to be convinced to publish it. He also shares the book idea developed from an event with his own son and the book title came from a sign down the road from where they were living. Cue the goose bumps.  He remarks we not only have a funny bone but a fear bone.  Well, yeah, and you sure found mine Stephen.

Oh! And that scary line. I think I’ll go with what King thinks is the scariest line. “Sometimes Louis,” Judi says, “dead is better.”    

Tell me what the scariest book you’ve ever read is and why.

 

Rita writes thrillers about extraordinary women and the men they love. Under Fire and Under Fire: The Admiral. You can find out more about her by visiting her web home at http://ritahenuber.com

 

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