Let’s Talk Bookish is a weekly meme, that is hosted by Rukky @Eternity Books and Dani @Literary Lion. It’s a chance to discuss certain topics, share opinions, and spread the love by visiting each other’s posts.
Posts are written on Fridays, and you can suggest topics using the form that you will find on Rukky’s Contact page.
CAN BOOKS BE EFFECTIVE HORROR?
Prompts: Some people love to be scared – others not so much. When it comes to reading do you think books can be scary? Are you less scared because there are no pictures? Do you feel other mediums such as film are more effective for horror? Have you ever been kept up at night by a book?
My response this week will be fairly brief because horror is so NOT my thing 😂😂😂. A well written book can definitely be scary – the imagination is a very powerful tool. I recall reading a story as a child – probably somewhere around the age of 10 or 11 – that definitely had me scared. I’ve not read something as an adult that has scared me -at least not in fiction! However that is probably due more to my whole avoidance of the genre than anything else. There are books that have certainly made me anxious, left me feeling on edge with a similar adrenaline fuelled response to that of reading/watching horror.
Ghost and horror stories were popular long before the invention of celluloid and the moving picture, so I think we can safely say that books can be just as scary, even minus the visual images. Telling scary stories around the camp fire is pretty much a childhood rite of passage whilst spoken stories were the only way of passing on history for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. Films may generate a much stronger response, but that is totally down to the wider experience of a movie. If you removed the stirring sound track the scene would probably lose a massive chunk of it’s potency, not to mention all the cinematography “tricks” being used, the lighting, the editing, etc which all play a part in creating a terrifying experience. It is somewhat similar to way music and lighting is used to create an atmosphere whilst queuing for rides at a theme park.
The only time I’ve been kept up by a book is when it’s been so good I “just need to read the next page“. Alternatively if can also be when it’s so bad that I’m left wound up and irritated by it!
What do you think? Can a book be scary and, if so, can it be scarier than a film?