Thanks to the “books that stayed with you” thing going around Facebook now, I learned of a book that, I’ll admit, I’d never heard about before. On the Beach by Nevil Shute is a post-apocalyptic novel written in 1957 and set in 1963 Australia after the Northern Hemisphere basically nuked itself into oblivion.
I’m over a quarter of the way through it (although I know how it ends because, yes, I’m one of THOSE kind who skim the ending before I read the book because I don’t want to waste my time on an unsatisfactory book). I started it last night before bed (mistake) and had haunting dreams of struggling to survive through a mysterious illness killing off mankind. LOL
I can equate this book to Alas, Babylon by Pat Frank, which I read in the early 80’s in junior high and high school. That novel haunted and stayed with me for several reasons, the first being that it was before the days of, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall,” and that I lived in Florida, where it was set.
Another book that I hadn’t read until recently was Johnny Got His Gun by Dalton Trumbo. WOW. Talk about intense.
As disturbing as these books are, they’re cathartic, in a way. The thing that hasn’t happened, yet could, but hopefully won’t. I get the same kind of feeling watching the TV series Life After People.
My post-apocalyptic series that I’m working on, The Great Turning, is one where I am shooting for that exact same kind of feeling, although with more hope at the end. LOL My calamity is a comet hitting the earth and wiping out a sizable section of the Asian continent and what happens afterwards.
So what books have disturbed you, or stayed with you like that? Not in a warm, fuzzy kind of way, but in a “I really need to compile a survival kit” kind of way, or a “I REALLY hope that never happens to me” kind of way? Sound out in the comments. And it doesn’t even have to be that exact kind of scenario. Any book that sort of creeped you out, or disturbed you, but that you enjoyed because (or in spite of) that fact.
12 thoughts on “What books disturbed you?”
hi , its not a particular book so much as a subject , i dont like total sexual slavery where the person is in total humiliation and has no personal opinion or self esteem , and the plots that say these people were sold into slavery as children take my mind to bad places i dont want it to be when i am enjoying a book . sex between consenting adults should be just that , consenting.i understand that by the end of a book , thje person has been rescued and rehabilitated , but the journey is not always a pleasent one .
Very true. I have a few triggers that will make me stop reading (or not get at all) a book.
There are so many different things people are into, I love the totol control thing, I love a Alpha Dom, what bothers me and I try to stay away from is the dark and tragic as in this book https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17701652-obsession
we all are into diffent things, wether its feet (um ew), humilation, giving up total control, the individual need is there and needs to be fed. The dark books are just heavy/deep reads for me
I don’t mind Alpha Doms, but the Alpha-hole trend is what bothers me. Guys who are supposed to be “dominant” but who are just domineering assholes and only redeemed in the last five pages or so. If I can’t relate to the hero or like him a little at the start, nope. It’ll be a DNF for me.
Love me still by maya banks disturbed me because the men who “love” her leave her to die and she takes them back. Also Outlander by Diana Gabaldon for the brutality and male rape and abuse scene. On a different note, Swan song was disturbing post apocalyptic but I did like it.
Don’t think I read that one by Maya Banks. Yes, that scene in Outlander REALLY disturbed me. I haven’t even finished the second book in the series yet, and it’s been a couple of years. Not sure if I ever will be able to get back into it. Swan Song was a good one.
I am going way back to High School where one of the most horrendous books we had to read at school was “Lord of The Flies”, author I cant think of right now. But that was seriously disturbing.
I recently read a book which was supposed to be a combination of Black Ops and BDSM where the Doms had been Black Ops and now needed to rescue their woman. She was tortured and I could not grasp why the author needed to go into such descriptive detail. It was a trigger for me and I could not finish it. I ended up doing a rare thing for me, which was I actually deleted the book from my ereader. I cant remember the title, don’t want to. Not a book that gave me anything….[smile]
Lord of the Flies was definitely a disturbing book. Looking back, it’s odd to see that it’s a staple of high school reading lists. I get why it is, but looking back on it…
The book that to this day that still gets me is “The Stand”. I am 45 years old and I still can’t get through it without nightmares.
I LOVE The Stand. It’s one of my favorites. 🙂 I guess the supernatural aspect of it is what takes it out of the more “realistic” category for me. Kind of like zombies. I know that’s not reality no matter how much we joke about it (and I LOVE The Walking Dead) but stuff that COULD possibly happen, really gets to me. I know the superflu part of that one is a possibility, so that part does make me go hmmm. 🙂
1984 by George Orwell. It gave me the creeps the first time I read it in high school. Some of the things he came up with have so many similarities to now it’s just scary to me. Oddly enough, The Giver by Lois Lowry disturbed me too. I guess because everyone is the same and there are no choices left. In a way, it’s what the world seems to be moving toward, a world without choices. I don’t know, but those books stayed with me long after I read them. Over 10 years now actually…. lol!
I am not a huge Stephen King fan, I leave that to my brother, but in a fit of desperation one night when I still lived at home, I grabbed “Skeleton Crew”. This is a collection of short stories and the one that still bothers me to this day is “The Mist”. I still can’t drive in a heavy fog without being just a little creeped out. I love Dean Koontz too. I read his book “The Bad Place” and had to have my husband come turn out the lights because I refused to get out of the bed. Super creepy! So I read it again! 🙂
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