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What's the scariest book you've ever read?

(161 Posts)
Thurlow Tue 30-Jul-13 21:34:41

I'm currently reading IT and I didn't think it was particularly scary, maybe because I know what it's about because it's just one of those stories you know without reading/seeing it - but when I walked over a bridge over a stream today and thought "ooooh, this would be exactly the place Pennywise would hide if he lived in this town..." So it must be scaring me somehow!

Of course, it could just be the memory of Cujo, which I remember as the single most terrifying thing I've ever read at the time.

Also, Mo Hayder's first two Caffrey novels, Birdman and The Treatment, but they're probably more violent than scary. Though The Treatment was set less than half a mile from where I lived at the time I read it, which really didn't help much.

KateCroydon Tue 30-Jul-13 21:35:49

The Haunting of Hill House.

HarderToKidnap Tue 30-Jul-13 21:41:06

Pet sematary. Threw it down the stairs the first time I tried to read it. Tried again fifteen years later and my heart was pounding and I was in a cold sweat throughout.

orangeandemons Tue 30-Jul-13 21:41:48

Dracula. Shit me up good and proper when I was 18

MrsHowardRoark Tue 30-Jul-13 21:50:55

House of Leaves gave me such bad nightmares I never did finish it.

Cheddars Tue 30-Jul-13 21:55:42

Red Dragon by Thomas Harris is the only book that actually made me jump. shock

LEMisdisappointed Tue 30-Jul-13 21:57:38

Pet Semetary here too - fucking awful, i could never read it now - i read it when i wa a teenager, enjoyed it but couldn't turn the page when it got to the bit where the little boy got run over by a truck sad

Dracula didn't scare me, i just thought it was really sad

MikeLitoris Tue 30-Jul-13 22:00:51

The shining is probably the scariest.

Closely followed by Rose Madder.

I didnt find red dragon scary at all.

LaurieFairyCake Tue 30-Jul-13 22:01:13

Agree - pet cemetary - still couldn't read it

Or 'the fog' - but I was about 12 when I read it so very impressionable

EeTraceyluv Tue 30-Jul-13 22:02:04

Probably 'the woman in black' I was v disappointed with the film tbh. And not 'scary' as such but extremely shocking - 'The boy in the striped pajamas' I really didn't see the ending coming!

LegArmpits Tue 30-Jul-13 22:02:34

Flesh and Blood by Graham Masterton. Horrible. But great.

snozzlemaid Tue 30-Jul-13 22:03:42

I was going to say the ones you mention op-
The treatment

Brilliant all of them.

Mondaybaby Tue 30-Jul-13 22:18:30

I'm easily spooked so avoid anything scary. However, a few months ago I decided to read a Sherlock Holmes novel so got The Hound of the Baskervilles from the library. Terrifying! I couldn't even get out of bed in the night to go to the loo in case a mad evil hound chased me and after 2 nights of no sleep I had to swig some piriton syrup to knock me out. I won't be reading anything scary again.

Flourfairy Tue 30-Jul-13 23:26:54

A true crime book called Fatal Vision terrified me many years ago

Nerfmother Tue 30-Jul-13 23:29:46

The girl on the landing. Horrible.

AdoraBell Tue 30-Jul-13 23:33:18

Stephen King's The Stand, because it all starts with a genetically fiddled with flu.

I'm not easily scared by books tbh, but my sister lent me an awful trash horror book once about a babysitter being killed by the children she was looking after and it frightened me beyond belief. I couldn't finish it and I still had nightmares about it for weeks. Horrible.

waycat Wed 31-Jul-13 08:27:03

Skin by Mo Hayder - gave me the creeps and I made the mistake of always reading just before bed time!

Thurlow Wed 31-Jul-13 10:11:45

Mo Hayder's just grim all around, isn't she? I got quite freaked out what I was pregnant and kept smelling odd things in the house, it reminded me too much of The Treatment blush

I saw The Woman in Black on stage and it frightened the absolute bejeesus out of me!

But then telly's much scarier than books, I think - I don't watch horror movies at all, I found things like The Fall creepy beyond words and checked all my doors and windows before going to bed - but stories of monsters just don't do it. I keep reading bits in It about giant eyeballs falling out of fortune cookies and blood spurting out of the drain and thinking "meh". But then I do remember one Stephen King, I think it must have been Needful Things because I haven't read many books by him, where someone had all their nails pulled off and that properly freaked me out.

stargirl1701 Wed 31-Jul-13 10:17:05

The Road.

LeonardoAcropolis Wed 31-Jul-13 10:22:27

Coma and Brain by Robin Cook are very disturbing but I was terrified reading The Shining and Haunted by James Herbert. I am reading Misery at the moment and i think that will haunt me for years to come.

Deffodil Wed 31-Jul-13 10:29:43

All of Stephen King,James Herbert and Dean Koontz's are wonderfully scary.

iismum Wed 31-Jul-13 21:10:26

The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters. What the actual fuck was going on? Soo creepy ... I'm not easily scared by books, but that when gave me a few restless nights.

AvonCallingBarksdale Thu 01-Aug-13 19:05:34

The Darkest Corner Elizabeth HAynes

patienceisvirtuous Thu 01-Aug-13 19:12:15

The Exorcist terrified me almost as much a the film did.

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