Top 5 Wednesday – Scary Books

Welcome back to Top 5 Wednesday.  This is a meme started in November of 2013 and is still going strong! If you’re interested in being a part of it please see the group on Goodreads.

This week’s topic is Non-Horror Books that Scared You.

So scary books that aren’t really scary. Just to me. I can come up with a few. Warning, stuff gets dark.

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Helter Skelter by Vicent Bugliosi

OMG! This is the first scary book I ever read. I think I was probably around 13 or 14 years old. This was the first night my parents ever went out and left me home alone. I think to myself: “YES! Reading time!!” and I picked up this book. Big mistake! I spent the night freaking out, thinking I could hear intruders coming in to murder me. hahaha! What a way to ruin a great night!

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The Alienist by Caleb Carr

This book is more than just a Victorian, psychological thriller and who dunnit. It has a lot of depth, and the search for a freaking terrifying sociopath lies at the heart of the book. It is not for the faint of heart. I still loved it, and I’m looking forward to the T.V. series coming out next year.

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Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

I was assigned this book as a high school senior by a particularly challenging AP English teacher. He liked giving us difficult subjects to think about. This book was scary for me. It was about a man who commits a heinous crime and justifies it to himself. I found the book completely engrossing, almost mesmerizing. That was what really scared me. I could probably go back and read it now with a completely different experience.  For whatever reason, reading it at that particular time in my life imbued it with a realism that was frightening.

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the road

The Road by Cormac McCarthy

Parent beware. Don’t read this book if you can help it. It is desperate, bleak and haunting. A man travels with his son through a wasteland.  Earth has been destroyed by some unnamed apocalypse. Their life is completely hopeless, and the man is dying. To know that you are slowing down, little by little, and will leave behind your young child to fend for himself in this god forsaken world. I just can’t. The end is inexorable. It is a nightmare.

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Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

Freaking Margaret Atwood. This lady. She gives me sleepless nights. Have you read The Handmaid’s Tale? Yeah. This is more of the same. A vision of what the world will be. Or rather, what it is already. See, it’s easy to write off her “speculative fiction” as just an overactive imagination. Except, she’s done the research. All the things she writes about either have already happened in some parts of the world or are currently in the works. Every few months I see another newspaper article that confirms something she wrote about. In fact, just three days ago I saw this…

(warning: some of the links in this part of the post have photos and images which are disturbing to sensitive readers)


An article about American companies who produce pesticides that are causing devastating illness in other parts of the world. Then those same companies sell medicine to the people affected by the conditions caused by the same pesticide. It’s like a never ending profit cycle for them.

Yeah. You can find that in Oryx and Crake.

Or this…

Human Pig Hybrid Created

Human tissue growing inside a Pig.

Yeah. Again, find that in Oryx and Crake.

Or how about … oh ffs …

First Sex Doll Brothel opens in Germany

Yeah. Find this in The Heart Goes Last.

These are what I call really scary books, the ones that can actually come true.

Ok, time for me to go back to Fantasy. Dragons haven’t come to life since I started posting right? Let me know when it’s safe to come out again.

One thought on “Top 5 Wednesday – Scary Books

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