Friday, August 28, 2009

Things I've Noticed #2: Junior High Girls Scare Me

As a huge fan of horror novels, I'm always on the lookout for my next good scare; you know a book that will give me both the Heebies and the Jeebies. The problem is, a couple years ago I started to run out of new books by my favourite authors.

So I started to think back to great horror novels people have recommended to me in the past, and then it hit me, I still hadn't read V.C. Andrews.

When I was back in junior high, and reading all the Stephen King a young boy could read, I couldn't help noticing that the girls in my school were all reading the same horror novel; Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews. Now I like my horror to be pretty up front with Vampires, monsters, apocolypses, or Monstrous vampires fighting in an apocolypse.

Being 13 at the time and therefore unwilling to speak to girls I was only able to judge this book by the title, and in that respect it came off as pretty weak. I mean, come on... Flowers? What the heck is so scary about flowers? Yes, I admit Day of the Triffids is about killer plants so maybe it could be cool, but if girls liked it, it must be pretty weak, or so I thought at the time.

Little did I know that this would be one of the freakiest books I have ever, and I mean EVER read. This book shook my faith in the way horror should work, the way families should work, and the kind of girls they let into junior high.

For you fellows out there - I have consistently found that although many girls have read this, barely any boys have - the plot is pretty simple. After the death of their father, four young children are taken by their mother to their grandparents place and are kept in the attic until their mother feels it would be safe to let their grandparents know the kids exist. They stay in the attic, alone, getting no human contact except from their evil grandmother for years. Eventually, it becomes obvious their mother is not going to let them out and then the book focuses on an escape attempt by the kids and includes a scene I don't think I was old enough to read yet (I was 30 at the time), never mind the 12, 13, and 14-year-old girls who were reading it back in Junior High.

Seriously, this book has to been read to be believed, and no, the movie does not do the book justice.

Never let it be said that boys own the rights to horror fiction, after reading this book I think we just like some horror fiction, because, sweet cheese and crackers - the stuff Junior High girls like to read in the horror genre scares the crap out of me.

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