Book Club

Aug 9, 2020
62
41
18
I really enjoyed The Two Towers, I ended up being a little disappointed with Helms Deep, the movie made it seem so epic and the book was kind of a let down. So far The Return of The King has been alright. I am feeling a little burnt out on LOTR if I am being honest. I am having a hard time feeling motivated to finish it. Hopefully I’ll get past it and be able to finish the series. It will be a big accomplishment for me if I do.
You should read something else before Return of The King. It happened with me when I read 3 Amy Harmon books in sequence and the third was a chore despite being well-written just like the others!
 
  • Like
Reactions: Yue

Yue

Member
Jul 5, 2020
48
37
18
Just finished Anna Dressed in Blood. Holy cow that book was a page turner. I had such a hard time putting it down. Picked up the sequel and I can’t wait to jump in!
 
  • Wow
Reactions: Queen of Philosophy
Aug 9, 2020
62
41
18
Hey, folks! How's everyone doing? My second Kindle Unlimited month is ending, and since I just started another book and (probably) won't finish it before November, here's the list of titles I've read this October:

The Dragonoak Trilogy by Sam Farren: Dragonoak: The Complete History of Kastelir was the first book I've read this month; last week I grabbed The Sky Beneath the Sun and this week I completed the trilogy with Gall and Wormwood. Despite not having the strongest plot, the relationship between the characters is adorable - especially the main couple - and the lore is intriguing. Also, this has to be the most diverse fantasy world I've ever explored!

Dragonoak 1(1).jpg


Villains Don't Date Heroes by Hayden Archer: yes, that's right, the biggest villain in the city finally founds a superhero that bests her and, along with the frustrating of being defeated, she also discovers she's in love with the heroine. The narration style didn't click with me, it gets repetitive sometimes and I expected more in the "romance" aspect, but it was a very fun read!

TransVerse by Jamie Winters: a collection of poems about the stages of transition, mostly written by a trans man but also has some non-binary poems amongst them.

Escape to Pirate Island by Niahm Murphy: "Sarah Waters with pirates" was the elevator pitch that convinced me to read this one. I didn't regret! Packed with action (seriously, there's barely room for breathing!), twisted and combined with a well-developed romance, I crown Escape to Pirate Island the best book I read this month!

Escape to Pirate Island(1).jpg


The Children of Gavrilek by Julie Kirton Chandler: This is the second volume in a trilogy and no, I didn't read the first. The impression I got was that the first volume wasn't necessary for the understanding and I was right! This mix of sci-fi and fantasy has interesting ideas but man, it's so convoluted. Looks like there are at least two stories blended together. And the protagonist is so stupid and boring!!

Finding Jessica Lambert by Clare Ashton: Did I say Escape to Pirate Island was the best book I read this month? Okay, in truth, there's a very close competition between Pirate Island and Jessica Lambert! This book is longer than your usual romance but every page, every word, is necessary to compose this beautiful tale!

Verity by Colleen Hoover: Damn, this one was uncomfortable - in a good way, though. This is the closest I got to the horror genre (sorry, I forgot about Spooktober!). A competent mystery which ending offers some valuable discussion. I believe our friend Xeo would enjoy this one!

Colette: You Don't Have to Say You Love Me by Abigail Summer: The story of a transgender woman that's refreshing for not focusing solely on her self-discovery or centring around prejudices, despite being set in an age when being transgender would put you in jail. It's a good romance, I just thought things happen way too fast and with short descriptions, which made it difficult even for important events to stand out.

Finding Jessica Lambert(1).jpg


Well, that's it for now! See you again next month! :D
 

Xeo

Active member
May 10, 2020
177
198
43
(I've got a two-parter tonight! The first book I'll discuss is a disgusting mess, and honestly kinda lousy. The second though is one I'd recommend, so if you don't feel like reading all of this, that's the part I'd recommend the most if you're bothering to read any of my rambling at all! HAPPY HALLOWEEN!)

I've read a lot of splatterpunk lately. Nothing too new for me, but I've realized that a lot of the newer authors in this genre just come off like they're trying WAY too hard to be the next Edward Lee, and largely failing at doing so. I kept hearing about how sick and twisted Matthew Stokoe's "Cows" was. Well, it was sick and twisted I suppose. But it felt so shallow, and that's saying something for a splatterpunk book. A lot of these books will either insidiously crawl under your skin and disgust you (like "The Girl Next Door" by the late, great Jack Ketchum.) or not take themselves TOO seriously, meant instead of be repulsive, but entertaining, knowing full well that they're the literature equivalent of trash cinema. (Like pretty much all Edward Lee works. The Big Head, Header, Brain Cheese Buffet, etc.)

One thing I kept seeing regarding Stokoe was that he writes better than he has any right to in comparison to his genre of choice. I'll also disagree with that. Yes, he writes his novels more like actual novels, and less like some whack job telling you a tall tale while drunk in an alley and shooting heroine (which is how a lot of Edward Lee's books come off, intentionally, and hilariously.) But at the same time with how hard he tries to go absurdly over the top to disgust the reader, it just falls flat, and like I said, ultimately feels like he's trying too hard. Compare that style again to Jack Ketchum, and it's night and day. Jack could write, in fact he was known for more than just uncomfortably shocking splatterpunk, he was known as a genuine horror writer as well. The Girl Next Door may be based off of a true story (For anyone who's interested and willing to hate humanity for a little while, it's based on the story of Sylvia Likens.), but it was embellished enough to function as a novel rather than just a true crime story of gut-wrenching proportion. Even if that particular story WAS based largely on true events, Jack could write believable characters. If you wanted further proof of that just look at his next most famous piece of work, "Off Season", which wasn't based on a true story and purely fictional (thankfully).

So in the end we have a book filled with a metric ton of of disgustingly brutal physical, mental and sexual abuse. ****, murder, beastiality, animal cruelty, necrophilia, etc, etc. Ya know, the typical Splatterpunk stuff. And I guess there's some sort of message underlying the filth here, but is ANYONE reading this genre for a moral or some more complex message? I can't help but go back to my sentiment that in this genre, there are only two real viable outcomes. Tongue in cheek absurdity that fully embraces, acknowledges and loves what it is. Or soul-shattering depravity that sticks with you like a disgusting layer of filthy grime coated over your brain long after you've read it. Anything falling in between, at least in my opinion, seems to come off like this book. Trying too hard to be the latter without the foresight and self awareness to be the former. I think in this case, this book seems to have been a lot of people (especially a younger generation's) first entry in the genre. And while it IS disgusting and vile, it's not much else, and comes off as forced in trying to be as much. Which actually kind of misses the point of Splatterpunk.

So this one, I can't say I'd recommend it, even if you're a splatterpunk veteran and have the stomach for it.
cows.jpg

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Now on the flip side of this one, I also read "No One Gets Out Alive" by Adam Nevill. This was actually also a difficult read at times, though it's straight horror and not splatterpunk this time around. It has some seriously uncomfortable moments, especially in it's first half. Tense to the point of being almost overwhelming and frustrating at times. Though, to be honest I think some of that frustration was in how damn STUPID the main character, a young lady named Stephanie acts in a lot of the scenarios she faces. Yet despite this, without spoiling anything seriously, she ends up becoming a much more relatable character by the second half of the book.

There were some great creepy moments to be had in this book, some genuinely uncomfortable ones as well. As I mentioned above, it wasn't always an easy read, despite Nevill's very relaxed prose. One things for sure to me about this guy though, he can write some chilling stuff when he wants to. I didn't really need convincing of that after reading "Last Days" by him last year, but this book just further proved it. (That book still has one of my favorite modern horror creatures to come from a piece of literature in quite some time. If you happen to have read it, I'll just say this. That farmhouse was the stuff of legitimate nightmares!) Another thing I've noticed about Nevill's books is that they seem to follow a pattern of feeling slightly segmented into two distinct parts. Out of the three novels I've read of his now, "Last Days" felt the least suspect of this, but it was still guilty of it to some extent in it's last few chapters. The other two though "The Ritual" and now "No One Gets Out Alive" absolutely feel like two different stories when they have their "divide". In fact, in the case of "The Ritual", Netflix did a movie of this one...and decided to end it at the literal halfway point of the novel, when it drastically switches gears. Strange, considering you literally only get half of the story with no actual resolution or explanation of the events that happen in the first half. And it left out, in my opinion, the best half of the book. (Which is probably why the movie wasn't perceived particularly well.)

I don't want to spoil things here, but this book has this "divide" as well, and when I say it's a "divide", I don't mean it lightly. It takes a drastic turn midway or so through and switches gears, nearly becoming a different book, or at least what feels like a direct sequel. But that's not to say that it does so in a bad way, it actually works quite well here. The tone of the overall horror of the book changes in the second half too, though you catch hints of it in the first half. Where the first half of the book is more about an absolutely oppressive atmosphere of a girl down on her luck and desperate to just get by stuck in a terrible situation that only gets worse by the day, the second half gets a lot more supernatural.

I know the above few paragraphs might come off as me complaining, but I want to make clear that I don't intend for this to be overly negative, as in truth I thought this was a fantastic book. Whereas Stokoe's "Cows" felt cheap, forced, and ultimately like fluff, Nevill's "No One Gets Out Alive" is the opposite. It hits hard, leaves a lasting impact, and absolutely strangles you at times with it's tension. It's a decently long read, and a slow burn to start, but one I'd recommend. Adam Nevill is regularly called "Britain's Answer to Stephen King" and to be honest, I think that's a very fair comparison and level of praise for him. The guy is good.
noone.jpg
 
Last edited:
  • Wow
Reactions: Queen of Philosophy
Aug 9, 2020
62
41
18
(I've got a two-parter tonight! The first book I'll discuss is a disgusting mess, and honestly kinda lousy. The second though is one I'd recommend, so if you don't feel like reading all of this, that's the part I'd recommend the most if you're bothering to read any of my rambling at all! HAPPY HALLOWEEN!)

I've read a lot of splatterpunk lately. Nothing too new for me, but I've realized that a lot of the newer authors in this genre just come off like they're trying WAY too hard to be the next Edward Lee, and largely failing at doing so. I kept hearing about how sick and twisted Matthew Stokoe's "Cows" was. Well, it was sick and twisted I suppose. But it felt so shallow, and that's saying something for a splatterpunk book. A lot of these books will either insidiously crawl under your skin and disgust you (like "The Girl Next Door" by the late, great Jack Ketchum.) or not take themselves TOO seriously, meant instead of be repulsive, but entertaining, knowing full well that they're the literature equivalent of trash cinema. (Like pretty much all Edward Lee works. The Big Head, Header, Brain Cheese Buffet, etc.)

One thing I kept seeing regarding Stokoe was that he writes better than he has any right to in comparison to his genre of choice. I'll also disagree with that. Yes, he writes his novels more like actual novels, and less like some whack job telling you a tall tale while drunk in an alley and shooting heroine (which is how a lot of Edward Lee's books come off, intentionally, and hilariously.) But at the same time with how hard he tries to go absurdly over the top to disgust the reader, it just falls flat, and like I said, ultimately feels like he's trying too hard. Compare that style again to Jack Ketchum, and it's night and day. Jack could write, in fact he was known for more than just uncomfortably shocking splatterpunk, he was known as a genuine horror writer as well. The Girl Next Door may be based off of a true story (For anyone who's interested and willing to hate humanity for a little while, it's based on the story of Sylvia Likens.), but it was embellished enough to function as a novel rather than just a true crime story of gut-wrenching proportion. Even if that particular story WAS based largely on true events, Jack could write believable characters. If you wanted further proof of that just look at his next most famous piece of work, "Off Season", which wasn't based on a true story and purely fictional (thankfully).

So in the end we have a book filled with a metric ton of of disgustingly brutal physical, mental and sexual abuse. ****, murder, beastiality, animal cruelty, necrophilia, etc, etc. Ya know, the typical Splatterpunk stuff. And I guess there's some sort of message underlying the filth here, but is ANYONE reading this genre for a moral or some more complex message? I can't help but go back to my sentiment that in this genre, there are only two real viable outcomes. Tongue in cheek absurdity that fully embraces, acknowledges and loves what it is. Or soul-shattering depravity that sticks with you like a disgusting layer of filthy grime coated over your brain long after you've read it. Anything falling in between, at least in my opinion, seems to come off like this book. Trying too hard to be the latter without the foresight and self awareness to be the former. I think in this case, this book seems to have been a lot of people (especially a younger generation's) first entry in the genre. And while it IS disgusting and vile, it's not much else, and comes off as forced in trying to be as much. Which actually kind of misses the point of Splatterpunk.

So this one, I can't say I'd recommend it, even if you're a splatterpunk veteran and have the stomach for it.
View attachment 870

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Now on the flip side of this one, I also read "No One Gets Out Alive" by Adam Nevill. This was actually also a difficult read at times, though it's straight horror and not splatterpunk this time around. It has some seriously uncomfortable moments, especially in it's first half. Tense to the point of being almost overwhelming and frustrating at times. Though, to be honest I think some of that frustration was in how damn STUPID the main character, a young lady named Stephanie acts in a lot of the scenarios she faces. Yet despite this, without spoiling anything seriously, she ends up becoming a much more relatable character by the second half of the book.

There were some great creepy moments to be had in this book, some genuinely uncomfortable ones as well. As I mentioned above, it wasn't always an easy read, despite Nevill's very relaxed prose. One things for sure to me about this guy though, he can write some chilling stuff when he wants to. I didn't really need convincing of that after reading "Last Days" by him last year, but this book just further proved it. (That book still has one of my favorite modern horror creatures to come from a piece of literature in quite some time. If you happen to have read it, I'll just say this. That farmhouse was the stuff of legitimate nightmares!) Another thing I've noticed about Nevill's books is that they seem to follow a pattern of feeling slightly segmented into two distinct parts. Out of the three novels I've read of his now, "Last Days" felt the least suspect of this, but it was still guilty of it to some extent in it's last few chapters. The other two though "The Ritual" and now "No One Gets Out Alive" absolutely feel like two different stories when they have their "divide". In fact, in the case of "The Ritual", Netflix did a movie of this one...and decided to end it at the literal halfway point of the novel, when it drastically switches gears. Strange, considering you literally only get half of the story with no actual resolution or explanation of the events that happen in the first half. And it left out, in my opinion, the best half of the book. (Which is probably why the movie wasn't perceived particularly well.)

I don't want to spoil things here, but this book has this "divide" as well, and when I say it's a "divide", I don't mean it lightly. It takes a drastic turn midway or so through and switches gears, nearly becoming a different book, or at least what feels like a direct sequel. But that's not to say that it does so in a bad way, it actually works quite well here. The tone of the overall horror of the book changes in the second half too, though you catch hints of it in the first half. Where the first half of the book is more about an absolutely oppressive atmosphere of a girl down on her luck and desperate to just get by stuck in a terrible situation that only gets worse by the day, the second half gets a lot more supernatural.

I know the above few paragraphs might come off as me complaining, but I want to make clear that I don't intend for this to be overly negative, as in truth I thought this was a fantastic book. Whereas Stokoe's "Cows" felt cheap, forced, and ultimately like fluff, Nevill's "No One Gets Out Alive" is the opposite. It hits hard, leaves a lasting impact, and absolutely strangles you at times with it's tension. It's a decently long read, and a slow burn to start, but one I'd recommend. Adam Nevill is regularly called "Britain's Answer to Stephen King" and to be honest, I think that's a very fair comparison and level of praise for him. The guy is good.
View attachment 871
This is the first time I come across this term - splatterpunk haha Doesn't seem like my cup of tea, but I'm actually curious to read The Girl Next Door. I've read Sylvia Likens's Wikipedia description and... there's a film with Ellen Page based on her, I think. I've watched it, and despite not being gory or anything, it unsettled me. Not sure if I'd be able to read the book, but I wanna try xD

I mentioned you on my last post, but after seeing all these disturbing novels you read, I'm afraid Verity would be too soft for you haha
 

Xeo

Active member
May 10, 2020
177
198
43
This is the first time I come across this term - splatterpunk haha Doesn't seem like my cup of tea, but I'm actually curious to read The Girl Next Door. I've read Sylvia Likens's Wikipedia description and... there's a film with Ellen Page based on her, I think. I've watched it, and despite not being gory or anything, it unsettled me. Not sure if I'd be able to read the book, but I wanna try xD

I mentioned you on my last post, but after seeing all these disturbing novels you read, I'm afraid Verity would be too soft for you haha
The Girl Next Door film is loosely based off of Ketchum's book, actually. I'll look into Verity. If it's good, it's good, doesn't have to be hardcore. No One Gets Out Alive is more traditional horror, but Nevill does write in a bit of a more visceral style, very similar to the style of oldschool Clive Barker in this regard. I think if you were to describe him as a mixture of Stephen King and Clive Barker, both from their prime, I think you'd have a pretty accurate description of his style. "No One Gets Out Alive" was quite good, but my favorite of his that I'd read so far is EASILY "Last Days". Damned fine book.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Queen of Philosophy
Aug 9, 2020
62
41
18
The Girl Next Door film is loosely based off of Ketchum's book, actually. I'll look into Verity. If it's good, it's good, doesn't have to be hardcore. No One Gets Out Alive is more traditional horror, but Nevill does write in a bit of a more visceral style, very similar to the style of oldschool Clive Barker in this regard. I think if you were to describe him as a mixture of Stephen King and Clive Barker, both from their prime, I think you'd have a pretty accurate description of his style. "No One Gets Out Alive" was quite good, but my favorite of his that I'd read so far is EASILY "Last Days". Damned fine book.
The film I watched was actually An American Crime. I believe this is a softer version, not sure. Verity is not a perfect book but I thought the mystery was intriguing enough - and some scenes were uncofortable to read! D: Yeah, you recommended me Last Days and one of Barker's novels on that list of horror books you wrote to me - I'm busy with Kindle Unlimited until January, after that I'll go back to those titles :D
 

Xeo

Active member
May 10, 2020
177
198
43
The film I watched was actually An American Crime. I believe this is a softer version, not sure. Verity is not a perfect book but I thought the mystery was intriguing enough - and some scenes were uncofortable to read! D: Yeah, you recommended me Last Days and one of Barker's novels on that list of horror books you wrote to me - I'm busy with Kindle Unlimited until January, after that I'll go back to those titles :D
Ah, alright. There actually was a film made based from the Ketchum book, of the same title. The Girl Next Door. It's alright. Doesn't capture the events nearly as well. It's still disturbing to watch, but more on the level of "Funny Games" or something. The book is worth reading, but I'll say this, it's soul-crushing. It'll likely leave you depressed afterwards. I dunno though, I might just be jaded. I read Nick Cutter's "The Troop" and loved it, I went online later and saw that a lot of people struggled through it because of the gore and body horror in it, and honestly to me, that book was pretty damn tame and not even close to verging on actual splatterpunk. I need to remember that experience when recommending stuff like this, lol. That said though, if you can stomach some gore and uncomfortable situations, "The Troop" was most excellent. I'd argue it's in the top 5 horror novels of the decade. But if the idea of a "Lord of the Flies" like scenario that isn't afraid to push the boundaries harder and pulls far fewer punches bothers you, maybe proceed with caution.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Queen of Philosophy
Aug 9, 2020
62
41
18
Ah, alright. There actually was a film made based from the Ketchum book, of the same title. The Girl Next Door. It's alright. Doesn't capture the events nearly as well. It's still disturbing to watch, but more on the level of "Funny Games" or something. The book is worth reading, but I'll say this, it's soul-crushing. It'll likely leave you depressed afterwards. I dunno though, I might just be jaded. I read Nick Cutter's "The Troop" and loved it, I went online later and saw that a lot of people struggled through it because of the gore and body horror in it, and honestly to me, that book was pretty damn tame and not even close to verging on actual splatterpunk. I need to remember that experience when recommending stuff like this, lol. That said though, if you can stomach some gore and uncomfortable situations, "The Troop" was most excellent. I'd argue it's in the top 5 horror novels of the decade. But if the idea of a "Lord of the Flies" like scenario that isn't afraid to push the boundaries harder and pulls far fewer punches bothers you, maybe proceed with caution.
Well, I love Funny Games! 😂 Gore and uncomfortable stuff usually doesn't bother me to the point of making me give up on a story. However, there are certain exceptions that pretty much gut me, and judging by An American Crime, Sylvia Likens's case is one of them. There's something about this girl being tortured by her caretaker for three months that's just too horrific for me to consider "entertaining". Still, I wanna give the book a chance.

I confess I never read or watched Lord of the Flies, but I heard it's quite gross haha
 

Xeo

Active member
May 10, 2020
177
198
43
Well, I love Funny Games! 😂 Gore and uncomfortable stuff usually doesn't bother me to the point of making me give up on a story. However, there are certain exceptions that pretty much gut me, and judging by An American Crime, Sylvia Likens's case is one of them. There's something about this girl being tortured by her caretaker for three months that's just too horrific for me to consider "entertaining". Still, I wanna give the book a chance.

I confess I never read or watched Lord of the Flies, but I heard it's quite gross haha
You bring up an interesting point, actually. I don't think stories like The Girl Next Door are entertaining, splatterpunk in general is often not "entertaining". It's more of a morbid curiosity to see this depraved piece of work through to the end and how it concludes. I suppose some of it can be entertaining, when it's just absolute bonkers and ridiculously fucked up the point of being almost if not fully comedic. (Some Edward Lee stuff is absolutely like this. But also think of the early Peter Jackson films here, like Braindead/Dead Alive!)

You're absolutely right though, the Sylvia Likens case is not entertaining, it's gut-wrenching. And it has this effect on you to read about it like you need to know how it ends, and you HOPE there's some silver lining somewhere, that somehow something works out for the better, even though you pretty much know it's not going to. But I'm also a firm believer that horror is a genre that's meant to leave you uncomfortable. Not always needing to shock you, but absolutely to leave you feeling bothered and uncomfortable. And stuff like this certainly does do that!

Lord of the Flies is something that often if you've read it, you read it sometime in school. Maybe middle school, maybe high school. But when you do, it shows you just how ugly people can and often WILL be when pushed hard enough or at least pushed into a situation that demands survival of the fittest. That's often shocking for the average person who lives in a decently cushy first world country at that age range. It's actually a pretty good read.

Cutter's "The Troop" is like it a lot of ways, but largely because it puts a group of teenage boys in an isolated survival scenario, and things go down exactly how you'd expect them to. But there's more to this one other than just the nastiness that the set up itself brings. To sum that book up quickly (without spoilers, nothing beyond what's on the back/inside jacket of the book!), it's about a Troop of teenaged Boy Scouts who go to a remote camping spot on a small island and then run into the victim of what seems to be some sort of government experiment gone wrong. And hell breaks loose, quickly. I read it on a whim after stumbling across Stephen King's personal review of it on goodreads.com. And it was great!
 
Last edited:
Aug 9, 2020
62
41
18
You bring up an interesting point, actually. I don't think stories like The Girl Next Door are entertaining, splatterpunk in general is often not "entertaining". It's more of a morbid curiosity to see this depraved piece of work through to the end and how it concludes. I suppose some of it can be entertaining, when it's just absolute bonkers and ridiculously fucked up the point of being almost if not fully comedic. (Some Edward Lee stuff is absolutely like this. But also think of the early Peter Jackson films here, like Braindead/Dead Alive!)

You're absolutely right though, the Sylvia Likens case is not entertaining, it's gut-wrenching. And it has this effect on you to read about it like you need to know how it ends, and you HOPE there's some silver lining somewhere, that somehow something works out for the better, even though you pretty much know it's not going to. But I'm also a firm believer that horror is a genre that's meant to leave you uncomfortable. Not always needing to shock you, but absolutely to leave you feeling bothered and uncomfortable. And stuff like this certainly does do that!

Lord of the Flies is something that often if you've read it, you read it sometime in school. Maybe middle school, maybe high school. But when you do, it shows you just how ugly people can and often WILL be when pushed hard enough or at least pushed into a situation that demands survival of the fittest. That's often shocking for the average person who lives in a decently cushy first world country at that age range. It's actually a pretty good read.

Cutter's "The Troop" is like it a lot of ways, but largely because it puts a group of teenage boys in an isolated survival scenario, and things go down exactly how you'd expect them to. But there's more to this one other than just the nastiness that the set up itself brings. To sum that book up quickly (without spoilers, nothing beyond what's on the back/inside jacket of the book!), it's about a Troop of teenaged Boy Scouts who go to a remote camping spot on a small island and then run into the victim of what seems to be some sort of government experiment gone wrong. And hell breaks loose, quickly. I read it on a whim after stumbling across Stephen King's personal review of it on goodreads.com. And it was great!
I follow Robert McKee's definition of Entertainment, which basically means that both a "fun, up-beat" story and "tragic, gut-wrenching" story are forms of entertainment because it's meant to "immerse you in the ceremony of story to an intellectually and emotionally satisfying end." I haven't read many horror books, but films like Funny Games, Dancer in the Dark, Green Room... I find them entertaining beside them being gory and, some of them, based on real events. The problem is when this ceremony is broken. And that's what happens with stories like Sylvia Likens. But I still think they can be considered entertainment and even an important case to at least know about. And yes, I agree, horror that leaves you uncomfortable is the best kind.

School in Brazil doesn't recommend Lord of the Flies D: I feel like I lost many great titles because of this haha I'm slowly catching up!

Hmm... interesting. Usually, stories with this premise are clichéd teenager drama. I'll have to take a closer look at The Troop!
 

Xeo

Active member
May 10, 2020
177
198
43
I follow Robert McKee's definition of Entertainment, which basically means that both a "fun, up-beat" story and "tragic, gut-wrenching" story are forms of entertainment because it's meant to "immerse you in the ceremony of story to an intellectually and emotionally satisfying end." I haven't read many horror books, but films like Funny Games, Dancer in the Dark, Green Room... I find them entertaining beside them being gory and, some of them, based on real events. The problem is when this ceremony is broken. And that's what happens with stories like Sylvia Likens. But I still think they can be considered entertainment and even an important case to at least know about. And yes, I agree, horror that leaves you uncomfortable is the best kind.

School in Brazil doesn't recommend Lord of the Flies D: I feel like I lost many great titles because of this haha I'm slowly catching up!

Hmm... interesting. Usually, stories with this premise are clichéd teenager drama. I'll have to take a closer look at The Troop!
I think you've got the whole of it there, really. Absolutely loved Green Room btw! I love almost any story about a band, to be honest, so long as it's done well. There's some pretty good horror with that setting. But surprisingly not as much as you'd think, especially in the realms of heavy metal. You'd think that'd be a no-brainer, but it's less common than you might think. I intend to change that, if possible, lol. Assuming I can get something published one day.
 
Aug 9, 2020
62
41
18
I think you've got the whole of it there, really. Absolutely loved Green Room btw! I love almost any story about a band, to be honest, so long as it's done well. There's some pretty good horror with that setting. But surprisingly not as much as you'd think, especially in the realms of heavy metal. You'd think that'd be a no-brainer, but it's less common than you might think. I intend to change that, if possible, lol. Assuming I can get something published one day.
Green Room made me see Patrick Stewart in a whole different light 😬 Well, I can say it was my first "horror with a band", but it was a great experience! Oh, are you planning on publishing a book? Good luck! I'm also on the path to publish one of my own 😅
 

Xeo

Active member
May 10, 2020
177
198
43
Green Room made me see Patrick Stewart in a whole different light 😬 Well, I can say it was my first "horror with a band", but it was a great experience! Oh, are you planning on publishing a book? Good luck! I'm also on the path to publish one of my own 😅
Yeah, been going to school for creative writing for a little bit. That's the goal afterwards, make a career of it. Good luck to you as well!
 
  • Love
Reactions: Queen of Philosophy

Dango

Member
May 11, 2020
59
74
18
Queen Anne's Revenge
twitter.com
So I've been trying to find fantasy books similar to the one I'll be self-publishing next year (Up Against Mooneye), partially for comparison, but also because I just like these kinds of stories.

I tried to get into The House in the Cerulean Sea, a fantasy story that released earlier this year, and I couldn't. Maybe I'll give it another shot because of how beloved it is, but the first three chapters were soul-crushing. It's just this miserable guy working a shitty office job, dealing with his asshole coworkers and his asshole neighbour. I'm pretty sure this is the opposite of escapism. Not a very fun way to start this kind of story.

But then I tried to get into The Edge Chronicles with The Curse of the Gloamglozer, and I love it. I'm like 5 chapters in, and so much exciting stuff has already happened. Starting off with sky pirates planning a huge raid is way more fun and interesting. The world it takes place in is also super interesting. It's so much closer to what I expect from a light fantasy story, and such a stark contrast to the sad bureaucracy in THitCS.

Yet I'm a little bummed, because Gloamglozer is a much older book, and while the series has continued into recent years, I've struggled to find a series like it that started recently. Maybe that'll benefit me since it means less competition, but I don't want this kind of stuff to die out. So much fantasy today sells itself as being self-serious and grimdark. I'd like to see more jolly adventures.

 
  • Like
Reactions: Queen of Philosophy

Xeo

Active member
May 10, 2020
177
198
43
So I've been trying to find fantasy books similar to the one I'll be self-publishing next year (Up Against Mooneye), partially for comparison, but also because I just like these kinds of stories.

I tried to get into The House in the Cerulean Sea, a fantasy story that released earlier this year, and I couldn't. Maybe I'll give it another shot because of how beloved it is, but the first three chapters were soul-crushing. It's just this miserable guy working a shitty office job, dealing with his asshole coworkers and his asshole neighbour. I'm pretty sure this is the opposite of escapism. Not a very fun way to start this kind of story.

But then I tried to get into The Edge Chronicles with The Curse of the Gloamglozer, and I love it. I'm like 5 chapters in, and so much exciting stuff has already happened. Starting off with sky pirates planning a huge raid is way more fun and interesting. The world it takes place in is also super interesting. It's so much closer to what I expect from a light fantasy story, and such a stark contrast to the sad bureaucracy in THitCS.

Yet I'm a little bummed, because Gloamglozer is a much older book, and while the series has continued into recent years, I've struggled to find a series like it that started recently. Maybe that'll benefit me since it means less competition, but I don't want this kind of stuff to die out. So much fantasy today sells itself as being self-serious and grimdark. I'd like to see more jolly adventures.

Can't say I know of a lot of stuff like that anymore, really. As when it comes to fantasy what I actually prefer is dark fantasy. I assume you don't mean high fantasy either?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Queen of Philosophy
Aug 9, 2020
62
41
18
So I've been trying to find fantasy books similar to the one I'll be self-publishing next year (Up Against Mooneye), partially for comparison, but also because I just like these kinds of stories.

I tried to get into The House in the Cerulean Sea, a fantasy story that released earlier this year, and I couldn't. Maybe I'll give it another shot because of how beloved it is, but the first three chapters were soul-crushing. It's just this miserable guy working a shitty office job, dealing with his asshole coworkers and his asshole neighbour. I'm pretty sure this is the opposite of escapism. Not a very fun way to start this kind of story.

But then I tried to get into The Edge Chronicles with The Curse of the Gloamglozer, and I love it. I'm like 5 chapters in, and so much exciting stuff has already happened. Starting off with sky pirates planning a huge raid is way more fun and interesting. The world it takes place in is also super interesting. It's so much closer to what I expect from a light fantasy story, and such a stark contrast to the sad bureaucracy in THitCS.

Yet I'm a little bummed, because Gloamglozer is a much older book, and while the series has continued into recent years, I've struggled to find a series like it that started recently. Maybe that'll benefit me since it means less competition, but I don't want this kind of stuff to die out. So much fantasy today sells itself as being self-serious and grimdark. I'd like to see more jolly adventures.

I recommend the first chapter in the Threadlight series. It was self-published by Zack Argyle this year and it's one of the best fantasy books I've read in 2020. Shadows of Aggar by Chris Anne Woolf is another great story but I'm not sure if it's the "light read" you're looking for (it's not dark fantasy but...)
 
  • Like
Reactions: Dango
Aug 9, 2020
62
41
18
Can't say I know of a lot of stuff like that anymore, really. As when it comes to fantasy what I actually prefer is dark fantasy. I assume you don't mean high fantasy either?
I'm on the last pages of Aurora's Angel. It's dark fantasy and ratings are quite high. I still haven't decided if I liked it as much as everybody else, but it is an interesting read!
 

Xeo

Active member
May 10, 2020
177
198
43
Interesting suggestions, folks. When we're talking about dark fantasy, are we referring to things in the vein of The Witcher, or The Black Company here? Because that's what I like.