Monday, October 8, 2012

Chillers, Thrillers and Killers.

I have a love/hate relationship with being scared.  I always have.  I think it started when I watched Halloween with my brother, two friends and a babysitter.  Terrifying!  I was so scared I couldn't sleep for a weeks.  It wasn't long after my introduction to Michael Myers that I started reading books that keep me awake at night.  The thing that attracted me to the genre initially were the covers (of course).  The first books to leave an impression on me were books that my Dad was reading and I would see them lying around the house (often in the bathroom if I'm being completely honest).

The two covers that stand out the most vividly in my memory were Coma by Robin Cook and Night Shift by Stephen King.  I remember staring at the cover jacket with wide-eyed fascination too frightened to even consider reading them.

The first true horror book I read was Carrie by Stephen King.   I was on vacation in Maine and I think I was in 7th or 8th grade.  I remember being curling up on my bunk bed thinking, "This is it.  I'm going to read Stephen King."  The anticipation was so sweet.  In retrospect I have to admit that I was slightly disappointed because the story wasn't that scary--just really, really weird.

How much things have changed in the horror genres since then--especially for teens.  The YA industry is loaded with a variety of different chillers, thrillers an killers.  There is literally something for everyone.  And the best part--the cover art just keeps getting better.

   Whether you are intrigued by the unsettling beauty of A Certain Slant of the Light or creeped out by the dangling knives and scissors on The Replacements, cover art can be captivating.  And when you pair great covers with great stories, like Unwind or The Monstromologist, well then, that's simply terror-ific.

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