a zoo in hell


7 Scary Things - 1

I enjoy the celebration of Halloween as much as you'd expect. On the hand, there's the annoyance with seeing the tropes handled in such an amateur manner, on the other hand it's the time of year when the genre gets its due and the most attention -- even if it is often as schlock and cheap thrills.

Personally, I try to appreciate the holiday for what it is. The liminal time as winter approaches and summer surrenders to the long darkness ahead. The chill creeps in everywhere and the leaves cover the ground with their glorious final burst of life. This is the time, if ever, when the voices of the dead can be heard and when one feels like you can just reach behind the curtain and touch Leviathan itself.

So, in that spirit, what are some really scary things?

The Nightmare Factory by Thomas Ligotti

I'm getting a little boring with my praise for this book. Yet, I can't really say how wonderful it was to encounter an author that believes what he writes and does so in an intelligent and literary manner. These images and feelings linger for years -- as if you have been with the menace imagined in these pages.

Because that is actually what has happened; Ligotti has brought something potent over from the twisted labyrinths he's explored alone.