The Book Club

And in the blink of an eye, Halloween has suddenly found its way to our front doorstep. The costumes are ready, the candy is in the bowls and it is time for a few more scarily good horror recommendations. For the final spooky edition of October, I wanted to talk about a few more “HorrorTok” titles that I did not get the chance to read during this holiday season that will be on the “To-Be-Read” list for next Halloween. And, if any of the titles pique your interest, maybe you will find yourself putting a few of them on your list, too! 

For those who need a reminder of what “HorrorTok” is, it essentially is a subcategory in “BookTok.” “BookTok” focuses on recommending amazing titles to millions of readers, and “HorrorTok” hones in on strictly horror novels that are, hopefully, spooky enough to keep you up at night. This may be because they cover topics and concepts that many would find deeply disturbing, or the horrifying plot twists were too good to not be mentioned. Granted, some of the books on these lists aren’t always big hits, so it doesn’t hurt to research before you decide to pick them up from your local bookstore. And, when it comes to the “HorrorTok” list, you should probably check out the book’s content warnings as well, namely because some get extremely graphic and disturbing. 

One of titles that caught my eye is called House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski. I would give you a synopsis if I had one, but I truly have very little clue as to what this book is about. From what I can gather it encompasses a story within a story within a story, and it is a very odd read. The pages go every which way, and you get different fragments of text overlapping one another. I picked it up at work one day just out of curiosity and it was very strange to look at. But, nevertheless, it has been described as an extremely horrifying and interesting read, despite its apparent tediousness. It happens to be one of those titles I’m not sure I’m sold on, but I’ll probably do a little more research before I decide to pick it up. Either way, it still sounds rather intriguing, and I’m interested in this mind-bending read.  

Another title from “HorrorTok” that might find its way into the recommendation list next season is Tender is the Flesh by Augustina Bazterrica. Unlike the last title, I have a faint idea as to what this book is about. And, from what I have seen about it, this is one of those deeply disturbing titles that may make you pause before picking it up. The novel takes place in a world where animal meat has mysteriously become toxic to humans, causing a new meat industry to take shape – an industry where we raise humans for meat instead. During the story we follow a man who has lost it all and finds himself working in the industry just to pay his bills. He is able to ignore the fact that they are humans, until the company decides to thank him by sending him home with his own “fine specimen” – a living person. The big plot point circles around the question of “Will he see the error of his ways and free her?” It, understandably, is not for the faint of heart, so you have to be absolutely positive you can stomach the content before devouring this book. 

That is it for this week’s spooky edition! I hope that during this month you were able to find some terrifying tales to keep you up a few nights or at least found a few ideas for next year. Have a scarily fun Halloween, everyone!