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3.60  ·  Rating details ·  101,452 ratings  ·  4,469 reviews
Haunted is a novel made up of stories: twenty-three of the most horrifying, hilarious, mind-blowing, stomach-churning tales you'll ever encounter.

The stories are told by people who have all answered an ad headlined 'Artists Retreat: Abandon your life for three months'. They are led to believe that here they will leave behind all the distractions of 'real life' that are kee
Paperback, First Anchor Books edition (w/new Afterword), 419 pages
Published April 11th 2006 by Anchor (first published June 21st 2005)
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Average rating 3.60  · 
Rating details
 ·  101,452 ratings  ·  4,469 reviews

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Paul Bryant
Aug 26, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: spooky-ookums, novels
I'm only on p 75 of this thing and I'm about to hurl it at the wall. What is it supposed to be? Does this guy really think these lame parodies are funny? This is from the section called "Slumming", which is about rich people, a couple of whom are pretending to be poor :

"Inky always said being absent is the new being present." (p 69)
"Poverty, Inky says, is the new wealth." (p71)
"Social divers, Inky says, are the new social climbers." (p71)
"Nobodies are the new celebrity." (p72)
"Public is the new
Lex Larson
Sep 30, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: hearty German stock
Apparently working in a vet clinic for the better part of 5 years is precisely the recipe required to inure one to the effects of Palahniuk's writing.

You'll see tons of "OMG SO GWOSS!!" reviews here, but this ain't one of 'em. I was entertained. All the blood-and-guts and bodily fluids in the world don't really gross me out. What really sickens me is people.

And that's what Palahniuk does best: he writes about the dark sides of people and how precious little it takes to make those sides surface.
Aug 13, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror
This book is vile. It is disgusting. No matter how much you can take, you will squirm and say "Oh My GOD!" out loud on the bus or plane or couch or wherever it is you read. It is a nasty book. But Haunted is so much more than that and so worth reading.

Haunted is set in a drab old theater, past it's prime, boarded up, invisible, and impenetrable to the outside world. Inside the theater are 23 characters. 23 people with names like the Earl of Slander and Agent Tattletale. Each character is introd
Jul 17, 2007 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no one
This is honestly the worst book I have ever read. I finished it, only because of my amazement at how bad it was and how it never deviated from that.

I was intrigued by the premise: a group of writers volunteer to go on a retreat to write their masterpiece. The book has a chapter of plot, followed by either a poem or short story from one of the participants. Sounds cool!

The book falls apart immediately. All of the stories/poems are obviously written by the same person. They share themes, style, an
Josh Cutting
May 01, 2008 rated it it was ok
This book is incredibly uneven, that's its downfall. There are some really good moments, some really bad moments, and one or two truly brillant ones. Looking at it as what it essentially is; a collection of short stories, it's really no better or worse than any other short story collection, and actually should get extra points for its brazen audacity. The unifying material that links all of the stories together is terribly weak, and is what ultimately sinks the book.

The first story "Guts" is the
Sep 19, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: shock-seekers and Palahniuk fans.
Instead of reviewing the entire novel, I will just be focusing on my personal favourite chapter "Guts".
To date, there have been 53 known occurrences of audience members fainting during readings of “Guts”. This doesn’t surprise me at all, knowing the repulsive content of the story.
"Guts" is your mother, father, preacher and teacher shaking that disapproving finger at self pleasure. Needless to say, this short story will have you thinking twice about creeping that wondering
Dannii Elle
Actual rating 4.5/5 stars.

Twenty-three individuals with twenty-three tales to tell. The characters have been brought together but a notice, which reads: 'Artists Retreat: Abandon your life for three months'. Disparate in personality, background, culture, and class, they are forced to inhabit the same dank space and dine on the same lack lustre meals for three long months, as they pen the creative projects of their dreams. They also share a little of themselves, more than they would actually prob
Dec 31, 2009 rated it it was ok
Warning: The cover of this edition glows in the dark. Do not place on your bed stand unless you want to have a heart attack. I speak from experience.

There are 21 short stories in Haunted. Some of them are amazing such as the notorious "Guts". Others are so-so. A couple of them are just boring. All of them are written to shock yet the brevity of the tales keeps both writer and reader focused. If this was a short story collection, I would rate it a strong three stars.

Unfortunately it is not. Palah
April Cote
Feb 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bizarro, horror
"My goal was just to write some new form of horror story, something based on the ordinary world. Without supernatural monsters or magic. This would be a book you wouldn't want to keep next to your bed. A book that would be a trapdoor down into some dark place. A place only you could go, alone, when you opened the cover.

Because only books have that power."

Chuck is right; you don't want to keep this book by your bed. You don't want to get up in the middle of the night and see is covet glowing at
Edward Lorn
Sep 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Palahniuk fans
First off, this is not the short story collection I was expecting. It is actually a single-author antho-novel hybrid fulla leprechaun jism and other awesome rainbow flavors. Wait... what? No, I mean to say, never write reviews while on Norco, Soma, and about 2 hours' worth of sleep outta 36.

I've been trying to catch some Zs since I got home from my latest hospital stay and it's not going so well. So what's better than fighting sleep? Drug-addled reviews. Raise the roof and down the proof!

Mar 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
My God, what to say about this one? Probably this: Haunted was messed up and engaging to the fullest.

I'm always floored when an author serves up something genuinely different. In a book market where so many offerings are so goddamn painfully similar (right down to the titles... can we get another book with the word "Girl" or "Dark" in the title please?) it's a real treat when you read something that stands out and rises above the rest for not being like the others. It's even more rewarding when
Aug 16, 2007 rated it did not like it
Shelves: chuck, fiction
This is chuck's worst work. It pains me to say that, but its just true. a group of would-be writers on a writer's retreat each is given the chance to tell a story. The stories are all basically gross for the sake of being gross with little to no redeeming value.

One infamous story involving a pool was so hard to get through I had to take 3 breaks. Its so descriptive and disgusting I had to take a breather for fear of vomiting (i am not alone in this, he read this particular story at signings and
Mar 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
The book was a difficult read. Even more difficult to review. I struggled with how many stars to give it to the point where I've waited a few weeks to even write a review. It wasn't my favorite book by any means but I didn't hate it either. What it did do was stir so much visceral emotion that I haven't been able to pick up another book since. A reaction that intense warrants recognition so I reluctantly opted for 4 stars purely on its dark influence over my joy of reading (or lack there of now) ...more
Feb 11, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The clue was in the title, a gore-fest, a book of horrors by the audaciously demented Chuck Palahniuk! Now think of the way Palahniuk writes, now imagine him writing horror? Yeah - that's what happens here.

Answering an advert people agree to go to a writing retreat - people such as Lady Baglady, Sister Vigilante and Chef Assassin! The retreat leader wants them to share stories, and to encourage them, locks them in a self contained building. Between each story telling the first person plural narr
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

4.5 Stars



Just disappear. Leave behind everything that keeps you from creating your masterpiece. Your job and family and home, all those obligations and distractions – put them on hold for three months. Live with like-minded people in a setting that supports total immersion in your work. Food and lodging included free for those who qualify. Gamble a small fraction of your life
Dec 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Disturbing. Nauseating. Twisted. Shocking. And at times, Funny. Yes, funny.

How is it possible that this book can be all of those things? I don't know, it just is and it works.
If you are the kind of person that likes a story that is different and strange, this is it.
It's the most disturbing book I've read by Palahniuk. The book is actually 23 stories that on face value are not connected at all. However, in this story they are connected and are woven together to make a greater and larger story.
May 30, 2007 rated it it was ok
People who are just trying to be gross can't help but be entertaining, no matter how see-thru their intent. You can't ignore the little boy who's trying to wipe his boogers on you, and when his parents have finally collared him, with anger and gag relex fully suppressed you have to admit the whole thing was actually pretty funny.

Chuck Paloonyhoonyhookiak is just trying to wipe his boogers on you. When he's done with that, he'll gladly exhaust whatever other bodily fluids happen to be available
Jan 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2005
I was really excited about this one after being disappointed with "Lullaby" and "Diary." Basically, it's a book of short stories each by a fictional author, each introduced by a poem about the writer, and linked together by mini-chapters about the writers' retreat they are all on. Trapped in a house and running out of food, they write, record, and videotape their experience, certain that when they are finally rescued, they will all become media darlings destined for reality tv fame, if any of th ...more
The Dark Krystal
Aug 19, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Don't be fooled, I may have chosen 5 stars for this novel, but not because I loved it. This book is dynamic.

This novel looks so innocent and harmless, sitting there with it's ghostly lavender and white cover and "Fight Club" was great, I'll give it a read.

This novel will stretch you to breaking point and beyond what you have ever read before. To give an example, when Chuck Palahniuk gives a public reading of the short story "Guts", the ambulance shows up before the end of it. People have fainted
Jun 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
True to form, Palahniuk pens some of the most twisted F'd up characterizations in the business. Bizarre and disturbing, for sure. Prolapsed pearl diving, back alley foot jobs, Breather Betty dolls full of love, Punch a mime for $5, the bowling ball bans. What more do you want? Thumectomys, nightmare boxes, crab lice and Sasquatch cycles…yep. It’s in there.

Palahniuk’s style is undeniable. Cutting dialog, over the top eccentric characters, demented plotting, all sprinkled with a generous amounts
May 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ok this was a mammoth read- not because of it's 400+ pages or that the author decided to use words which would have scored double points in a Scrabble game - now simply because there is SO much going on. Which is great for a book to read but terrible to comment about when you have a self imposed rule of no spoilers. Well here goes but I promise nothing (apart from a headache)

The book follows a group of less than conventional and stereotypical struggling authors desperate to finish/tell their var
Dec 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, audio
Onstage, instead of a spotlight, a movie fragment

I had no expectations when I started to read this book, well yeah I did I expected not to like it and most of all I expected not to "get" it. It's been on my to read list for an age now and I've always put it off expecting it to be one of those cool books that all your friends read and you feel dumb because it just goes right over your head. And before I started I did scroll through a few reviews here on Goodreads and saw that it had a lot of very
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
Feb 14, 2014 rated it liked it
Recommended to Shelby *trains flying monkeys* by: Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Shelves: read-2014
This book is more of a 3.5 star read.
A group of people agree to participate in a "Writer's Retreat". Three months, food and lodging included, while you complete your masterpiece.
The stories begin with probably one of the best, most shocking short stories I've ever read-called Guts. You just have to see for yourself on that one. Some of the stories the people share are more interesting than others. That's why the 3.5 stars instead of higher. The thing that amazed me about this book was the way
Jan 07, 2008 rated it really liked it
Hmmm, this is a toughy. I made the mistake of reading a couple of reviews on Haunted while I was halfway through the novel. Needless to say, it didn;t change the way I felt. I can't help but notice that readers of Haunted go to two different extremes in their reviews. Let's face it - you're either a Palahniuk fan or you're not. Anyone that has read a Palahniuk novel before knows what they are getting themselves into. You are going to feel gritty, you're going to feel dirty and you're going to ha ...more
May 02, 2008 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 11, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: chuckpalahniuk
easily the most disgusting book i've ever read. There's an afterword at the end where he talks about how books are the only medium where you have free range to tell the story however you want to tell it, to say whatever you want to say. Whereas in movies, you're trying to hit a certain audience and your work is censored and edited to a certain extent. Books alow you to travel to this deep, dark secret private place inside yourself. That's why he writes. A very compelling explanation. I think one ...more
I... I... I just.... WTF?!?!?!

Stopped on page 25 I can't finish this. I... this book is weird and disgusting and gut wrenching. I decided to read this book because I read in a group comment that it was the weirdest thing they've ever read. So I decided to give it a try... no. Just fucking no.

Stories about some kid sodomising himself with a fucking carrot and some Vaseline; a teenager jacking off with some candle wax -- THROUGH HIS PISS HOLE. The storyteller jacking off in a pool hovering over th
Feb 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Luis by: Derrick
The whole point is life is obsolete.
The most resonating point is when the moment we became sure that there is a real heaven (minus God's restrictions), we'll be racing to it. Nope, it's not going to be called mass suicide, it's going to be called "emigrating."

I cannot even begin to explain the brilliance of this book. This is another masterpiece of a master. And I'm never going to be smart enough to review this book.

I recommend this book. BUT ONLY to those die-hard fans of Chuck. To those who wi
Jun 05, 2013 rated it it was ok
I adore scary. I love being scared by movies and books. I'm a little less brave by real-life situations - as a kid I loved the idea of haunted houses at Halloween, but each year, without fail, I wouldn't even make it through a haunted house without my dad having to carry me out an emergency exit because it was all just too much. It became sort of a family joke. I wanted to make it through, I wanted to enjoy being scared, but it was too close to me, I didn't have control over it, and therefore, I ...more
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Written in stolen moments under truck chassis and on park benches to a soundtrack of The Downward Spiral and Pablo Honey, Fight Club came into existence. The adaptation of Fight Club was a flop at the box office, but achieved cult status on DVD. The film’s popularity drove sales of the novel. Chuck put out two novels in 1999, Survivor and Invisible Monsters. Choke, published in 2001, became Chuck’ ...more

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