Have you ever read a book that was truly disturbing, but you couldn’t not read it? Yeah, it’s a strange question.
I’m reading The Girl Next Door by Jack Ketchum (Dallas Mayr). It’s a seminal work in horror fiction, but I’ve never read it. Mayr passed away on January 24 after a long battle with cancer. Those in the horror fiction community have talked about his influence on where horror literature is today. All of those writers have pointed back to his 1989 novel The Girl Next Door.
So I started reading it.
I’m a little over halfway through and not sure I can continue. It is the single most disturbing story I’ve ever read. And it’s all because of the way Mayr tells the story. The POV character makes the reader feel at once complicit and victimized. As disturbing as the story is, and I’m telling you it’s like the most difficult episode of Criminal Minds amplified times a billion, I can’t not read it. Mayr’s storytelling is brilliant.
Have you ever read anything that you couldn’t read, but you couldn’t not read it?