I don’t scare easily. In fact, if you’ve read either of my two serial-killer novels,They Never Die Quietly or Resuscitation, it’s pretty obvious that I’m no wimp. At the risk of tooting my own horn, I think I’m pretty good at creating larger-than-life villains. That said, there is one book that goes all the way back to a 1977 publication date, and this novel still makes me shudder. I’m talking about The Shining by Stephen King.
King’s ability to make Jack Torrance so real and so utterly frightening is a skill few authors possess. In this novel, King took an average guy, placed him in extraordinary circumstances, and slowly and methodically turned him from loving husband and devoted father to an unimaginable monster. Reading this book, you suspect right from the opening chapter that something isn’t quite right with Jack. However, I don’t believe that many readers could predict the extent of Jack’s madness.
Of course, when the book was made into a movie, and they cast Jack Nicholson to play Jack Torrance, his performance made the book even more terrifying. As far as I’m concerned, The Shining wins the prize for one of the scariest books ever written. What is the scariest book you’ve ever read?