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The Tomb of Terminated Threads > Books That Kept You From Sleeping

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message 1: by Bonnie (new)

Bonnie Ever read a book so creepy that you couldn't sleep after reading it? That made you want to keep the lights on? That gave you nightmares? Do tell!


message 2: by Kim (new)

Kim (Kim_Richards) | 3 comments In the early 80's I got creeped out by The Wolfen. The book is much better than the stupid movie version. Anyway, there's a scene where the men in wolf form jump through a plate glass window to rip a character to shreds. I suppose it didn't help that I was reading this at work where I sat next to a window like that at night. For days after, I kept wondering if there were eyes out there in the darkness. lol

For me, it's not so much entire books that stick with me in creepy ways but specific scenes. Movies do that too. Something will touch that part of my psyche that gets freaked out.


message 3: by Kim (new)

Kim (Durgin19) | 32 comments After giving birth to my son, reading Offseason, Offspring, and Mine really freaked me out. I have never felt so protective of anyone in my life, and after reading those books, I felt like I didn't trust anyone aside from my family even near my house!


message 4: by Tracy (new)

Tracy | 2 comments when i was about 12 or 13 i read the voice of the night by dean kootz... i'm not sure if it's because i was the same age as the main characters or because it was one of my first true horror novels (i was already way into crichton by this time, but i think a lot of the scary got lost in his books because he's jsut SO BAD at developing his characters), but i would just sit up at night replaying the cat torture scene in my head.

stephen king also has a few that gave me quite the willies, not the least of which was desperation, in no small part because as i started it i was nursing a brown recluse bite on my ankle. being the hypochondriac that i am, i automatically assumed i recieved the bite in bed, and that an army of poisonous spiders lived in my bedroom. desperation didn't help AT ALL. although, looking back, i can't remember anything from that book BESIDES the spiders. i think i get it mixed up with the hellraiser graphic novel.


message 5: by Cathy (new)

Cathy | 186 comments Oh, I've been looking for All Heads Turn ... for AGES! It sounds so good.

I read The Shining when I was 13, and that bathtub scene kept me out of the bathroom at night for weeks.

As an adult, Peter Straub's Ghost Story, Thomas Harris' Red Dragon, and especially The Haunting of Hill House all gave me bedtime whim-whams when I read them.


message 6: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23558 comments "After giving birth to my son, reading Offseason, Offspring, and Mine really freaked me out. I have never felt so protective of anyone in my life, and after reading those books, I felt like I didn't trust anyone aside from my family even near my house!"

Me, too. Offseason is the biggie that kept me up at night, and I still think of parts of that book and can't sleep. Ketchum's The Girl Next Door bothered me for a long time. Now that I've got a little boy, I'm very sensitive to the way others are mistreated in our society, even if it's just in the fiction I read.

Salem's Lot gave me the willies back in the '80s when I was reading it. Anything vampire or werewolf will give me nightmares a few days after I read or watch something about these creatures.

Naomi's Room also freaked me out for a while. This book is very subtle and haunting, the way a lot of British horror is.





message 7: by Cliff (new)

Cliff | 11 comments I have to say "Reasons Of Insanity". It came out prior to Red Dragon and is just as scary.


message 8: by Caryn (new)

Caryn | 3 comments who's the author of "Reasons Of Insanity"?


message 9: by Jenni (new)

Jenni Morrison-Smith (vampira93) | 1 comments Ooh, I have two good ones. I wasn't allowed to watch anything scary as a kid, but I would buy used horror novels at the flea market. The Exorcist was one of the first ones that I read. I had to put it in the hamper under clothes at night so that I wouldn't accidentally see it at night.

Also, in 8th grade, I checked out a library record, Vincent Price's "A Hornbook for Witches". His reading of "Thus I Refute Beelzy" (my all-time favorite horror short story) cost me a few night's sleep.


message 10: by Cliff (new)

Cliff | 11 comments Caryn, the author of "Reasons By Insanity" is Shane Stevens. It came out way before "Red Dragon" (which I thought was the best book in the series), and I thought was much better.


message 11: by Ned (new)

Ned | 4 comments ......


message 12: by Ned (new)

Ned | 4 comments "The Ceremonies" by T.E.D. Klein, "The Haunting of Hill House" by Shirley Jackson and "The Girl Next Door" by Jack Ketchum would definitely make my list.


message 13: by Caryn (new)

Caryn | 3 comments thanks cliff! i agree about "Red Dragon," it was my favorite book in the series also. i liked "Silence of the Lambs" too (which i actually read first, and that is a book that kept me up at night), but don't get me started on how disappointing and unbelievable "Hannibal" was....after i read it i felt like someone had hit me in the head...


message 14: by Hayley (new)

Hayley  | 12 comments Hi

I'm new to this group.

Books that kept me from sleeping - I recently read Richard Laymon's Blood Games - though not as scary or gory as some of his other books, for some reason this kept me awake - the thought that someone is watching you or even stalking you is not a good thought to go to sleep on.
The one book that has kept me from sleeping at night on more than one occasion was Stephen Kings 'IT', this may also have to do with the fact I watched the film just before reading the book - good book though.


message 15: by Jason (new)

Jason | 247 comments It. Clowns really freak me out.


message 16: by Cloudcover (last edited Apr 08, 2008 10:01AM) (new)

Cloudcover | 1 comments One of the books which kept me up was A Death in Belmont by Sebastin Junger. You don't have the safety net of knowing it's fake. See also Zodiac by Graysmith.


message 17: by Hayley (new)

Hayley  | 12 comments I haven't read the book yet but I recently saw the movie - 30 Days of Nights - and the film definitley kept me from sleeping. I recently read 30 Days of Night - Rumours of the Undead - and due to the film I could picture the vampire's quite vividly - sleeping was not an option.


message 18: by Tressa (new)

Tressa  (MoanaLisa) | 23558 comments I must like to spook myself because I'm getting a lot of good recommendations here. Keep them coming.


message 19: by Tracy (new)

Tracy | 2 comments i actually just read the graphic novel 30 days of night last weekend, having just watched the movie (for the 3rd time; i really enjoyed it). while the art is really effective at capturing the mood and chaos and fear in the story, it's really difficult to tell what's actually going on. i think the fact that i had seen the movie made it a lot scarier than it otherwise would have been, because i could visualize it better than it was actually depicted. not that the GN wasn't scary, but it was more that the IDEA of it was scary than what was actually on the page.

plus, i think the movie did a much better job at the characterization, making the heroes just a little more flawed and human, and making the vampires a little more inhuman and brutal. in my opinion, they were all just a little bit flat in the GN.


message 20: by Cathy (new)

Cathy | 186 comments Oh, that story TERRIFIED me as a kid! I think both because of the implacable monster in the closet, but also because the father sold out his little boy to save himself.

I had forgotten it, but that might actually be the most frightening thing I've ever read.


message 21: by Hayley (new)

Hayley  | 12 comments Tracy I haven't managed to get hold of the grahic novel yet but I don't need the graphic novel to read after seeing the film - sleeping was a problem but I loved it and its just come out DVD I will be purchasing it.

Rob, I agree with you about 'The Boogeyman' from Night Shift, I find that I have to check all the doors in my room are properly closed after reading it.


message 22: by Hayley (new)

Hayley  | 12 comments Rob, I only read that story a few months ago and it scared me, I'm 24 but I have an over active imagination, so if I read a scary story or watch a horror movie before I go to bed then that story will play over and over in my head.

Another Steven King short story that gave me the chills is Children of the Corn - kids these day are scary enough but giving the scary religious zealous and a huge monster to sacrfice adults too is just plain scary.


message 23: by Hayley (new)

Hayley  | 12 comments I have read it some many times - I like Stephen King short stories he packs a punch with them. I've never seen the film version of this story and now I don't want to, it far scary to imagine it in your head.

You should try reading his Skeleton Crew book of short stories, they are really goods as well.


message 24: by Hayley (new)

Hayley  | 12 comments Hopefully I won't lose it, though its not good when your into read horror stories - I've just picked up from the Library Joe Hill's 20th Century Ghost - hope its good.


message 25: by Hayley (new)

Hayley  | 12 comments I still get scared, I'm a big wimp really, though I can't help but read the stuff.

I'm currently reading a young adult fiction book of short ghost called Shades of Darkness by Robert Westall - its quite good and the stories are quite creepy so far.


message 26: by Jason (new)

Jason | 247 comments "The Hour Before Dark" by Clegg freaked me out at times. The beginning was so good.


message 27: by Kathy (new)

Kathy (bookgoddess1969) | 380 comments I am currently reading 20th Century Ghosts by Joe Hill and it is amazing! I'm only about halfway through and I don't want them to end! Abraham's Boys was one of the best short stories I have ever read! And Pop Art is great! I'm looking forward to the rest of them!


message 28: by Marge (new)

Marge | 8 comments Not many novels have kept me from sleeping, but "The Exorcist" did. It was the scariest book I have ever read; I couldn't sleep for weeks without the lights on, and even then, I kept waking up!


message 29: by Kristen (new)

Kristen (Ravenskya) I read "IT" when I was somewhere between 10-12 years old... I was terrified of riding my bike past sewer grates for years after that.

"The Mist" from Skeleton Crew was another one I read about that same time... I read it outloud to my little sister she would have been about 8... we were TERRIFIED of fog for the next year or so.

More Recently - "The Girl Next Door" was extremely upsetting, and "Survivor" by JF Gonzales was gross (spoiler - raping and mutilating an infant was more than I cared to read about)

It's been a long time since any books have really given me the heebie jeebies, the closest aren't even horror books... I recently re-read "Alas Bablylon" and sat up most of the night planning on what I would do in that situation.


message 30: by Hayley (new)

Hayley  | 12 comments Kathy: I just finished reading 20th Century ghost stories and loved it and your right Abrahams's Boys was brilliant. I'm just about to read IT again - the film gave me nightmares years ago - when I was about 10 - but I really enjoyed the book. One day I will scary my silly with some of the books I read and the films I watch lol


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