I adore Matheson so this review is obviously biased. (hence, the 5 stars). I think the stories included in his other book (Nightmare at 20,000 Feet) aI adore Matheson so this review is obviously biased. (hence, the 5 stars). I think the stories included in his other book (Nightmare at 20,000 Feet) are more well written and are considered his "classics", which is rightly so because those are truly his best works.
That is not to say that the stories included in this volume are not good. That would depend on how you like your "horror" actually. Matheson is one of my quintessential horror writers; his quick prose style is ideal for turning mundane into something else. It's classic twilight zone: short, direct, intially ordinary then a sudden twist. Horror how he writes it is not necessary horrific, rather is more of a jolt, a sudden realization that drastically shifts the character (or the reader's) perspective.
My favorites: "Button, Button" (or "The Box" as they had retitled the movie based on the short story) is the standout story. A true review of the piece would probably end up being longer than the actual story, so I'll spare you the spoilers and just read it for yourself.
"The Creeping Terror" -- I didn't like it when I first read it but it does grow on you with each rereading. I found it quite funny actually. The image of the farmer's wife in a halter top in the kitchen has been burned into my memory thanks to that.
"Shock Wave" -- The premise is pretty outdated and you can guess the ending coming from a mile away, but I like the way he wrote it. I could feel the struggle between the organ player and the organ -- or was it with himself? In a master's hand, dust can still become gold. ...more
I had been eyeing this book since Niffenegger became a household name among hipsters for her breakthrough novel. First thing that caught my attentionI had been eyeing this book since Niffenegger became a household name among hipsters for her breakthrough novel. First thing that caught my attention were the weird drawings. Interesting, but the steep price turned me off
Maybe some other time
Several years and half of "The Time Traveller's wife later, I stumble upon this book again, this time on the sale bin. The gods must be smiling, methinks
I do not understand Audrey Niffenegger, which is code for I don't understand her work. The potential is there but she looses me with her unsympathetic characters who live in their own worlds. Magical realism without the realism. I was hoping this "picture book" would somehow enlighten me. Instead I'm trust into an isolated house by the sea where 3 sisters live.
Ophile, Clothilde, Bettine.
Like her other works, the characters are wrapped in their own worlds, creating their own problems and ultimately their own demise. Its a little hard to care for people who are self destructive, although the aquatint illustrations help prod me to finish the book.
The heart of this book are the aquatints. Daek, melodramatic. Niffengger was on the righy path in pairing down the words, but without much of a story the book is pretty mich what it is.
It's been a year since my dog, Surprise (who was 16 years old) died, and it's not true what they say about time damping your sorrow. I still miss theIt's been a year since my dog, Surprise (who was 16 years old) died, and it's not true what they say about time damping your sorrow. I still miss the old boy and I guess I was looking for a kindred soul when I picked up this book. The first few pages recounts the life and death of the author's old dog, Harry, who died at 17, in a touching and memorable tribute only a true dog lover could appreciate, and after browsing through it at the book store I knew I had to have this book. The photos exquisitely capture the uniqueness and personality of each dog: shy, happy-go-lucky, sweet, playful or even sleepy. This is the best dog book I've read so far, not withstanding that it's actually a photograph book rather than a novel itself. It's not condescending nor does it look down at a dog as merely a pet, instead it views dogs as companions, as friends. A definite must in a dog-lover's bookshelf. And yes, old dogs are the best dogs. ...more
Yeah, finally found a copy at Booksale. WooHooo :)
I adore King. I love how he twists what is completely natural into something unbelievably supernaturYeah, finally found a copy at Booksale. WooHooo :)
I adore King. I love how he twists what is completely natural into something unbelievably supernatural. And, of the (few) short stories anthologies I've read, I think I love this volume best. King seems to reached his stride in terms of short story writing with this volume, with "That Feeling, You Can Only Say What It Is In French" -- a story about deja vu -- being my current favorite (to the point that scenes and voices still echo in my head days after I had read it). Here, King is past the usual things that scare us: ghosts, supernatural, and what not. Instead, he presents horror as something within us, an unexplained darkness, lingering under the surface, waiting for that apt moment for it to surface and claim us. There really is no escape, because how can we escape ourselves?
The blurb at the flap says Suzuki is Japan's version of Stephen King.
I don't think so
Not to say that he isn't a good writer, or a good horror story wrThe blurb at the flap says Suzuki is Japan's version of Stephen King.
I don't think so
Not to say that he isn't a good writer, or a good horror story writer for that matter. Both just have very different styles and different notions of what scares a person. In "Floating Water" (which movie buffs would recognize as the movie "Dark Water"), recounts the tale of a mother and daughter living in a new apartment haunted by something in their drinking water. The entire feel of his story is that of a creepy silence -- very Japanese, very Zen, in essence. The horror is straight up, and by that I mean, it's very simple. Horror for him is ghosts, the supernatural, with only a hint of that dark human psyche (although I still feel that it plays a big part in gluing his stories). His endings are neat, almost as if that Zen neatness prohibits him from having an open ending, which is quite different from King.
I did, however, enjoy reading his works. Suzuki's voice is bordering on lyrical, and his stories are quite original, perhaps reflecting more Asian sentiments than what I'm used to. Even the Prologue is a story itself, and I somehow I feel a surprise coming at the end. I can't wait...more
My brother rolled his eyes when he saw I was buying this.
What, you into Twilight now, or something?
Actually, I'm writing a werewolf stoMy brother rolled his eyes when he saw I was buying this.
What, you into Twilight now, or something?
Actually, I'm writing a werewolf story and I needed research. And I'm rather surprised at the amount of research I'm getting from relatively thin tome. Barb Karg tackles this pop culture phenomenon in a twilight-directed approach (meaning, there are a lot of Twilight references), but I don't mind that. The amount of werewolf legends and stories, from how they are created (in both films and books) to how they're killed is both helpful and entertaining. Makes me want to watch some of the films she mentioned. Karg does as much as could to dissect and understand the werewolf legend, how it began and why it remains so popular, and if they're even real. But, like I said, this is a "Twilight" infused book and she DOES talk about Twilight a LOT, so if you can't handle even the slightest reference to Stephanie Meyers' work, then skip this. ...more
A must for short story lovers (like moi!). At the moment, I've read only one story, Tim Johnston's "Irish Girl". I'm still not used to the idea of shoA must for short story lovers (like moi!). At the moment, I've read only one story, Tim Johnston's "Irish Girl". I'm still not used to the idea of short stories as "impressions" of life, i.e instead of having an obvious story curve, the author gives you a scene in life and lets it take of from there, regardless of whether is even makes a story or not. "Irish Girl" is not revolutionary. It was, by no means, a new story nor does it try to be one. It's more of a study of one family; an ordinary family, relatable in its mundaneness that you end up being emotionally attached to the story even if there isn't much of it. Strangely, it's the sort of intellectual fiction that matters because of the emotional ties it creates. Good for some light reading, I suppose.
I'm excited to read the others.
*Edit: I've recently just read AS Byatt The Thing in The Forest . This is the first time I've read Byatt and already I'm a fan. Set during WWII, the story follows two little girls in the Kinder Train who experiences that thing in the forest. Part nostalgic, part horror, all good to me. ...more
It was ok for a leisure read. This is the first chick-lit I've read without feeling the need to roll my eyes and just toss it away, so it automaticallIt was ok for a leisure read. This is the first chick-lit I've read without feeling the need to roll my eyes and just toss it away, so it automatically gets 2 stars. I really liked the relationship between Grayer and Nanny -- reminded me a little of the string of nannies (or "yayas") I used to torture when I was a kid, and also of the fun times we had together. Like Grayer, I was really attached to most of them and I remember crying my heart out when they left, although I never really realized the effort they put into their work. Looking back, it must have taken a lot of creativity and patience just to keep up with my "yaya, let's play" every 15 minutes. No wonder a lot of them left so soon. Anyway, it was fun reliving the memories with this book. Hence, 3 stars...more
It was ok. Some stories were good; others were more of the slippery-slope type (i.e. someone's half-sister claims to have broken her arm because the gIt was ok. Some stories were good; others were more of the slippery-slope type (i.e. someone's half-sister claims to have broken her arm because the ghost tripped her. Their neighbor falls off the boat and dies. Since he must have tripped to fall off, the ghost tripped him. Ergo, the ghost killed him). Read it when you've exhausted all other ghost story collections. ...more