Friday 26 April 2019

The A-Z Blog Challenge, Letter W

Letter W of My Favourite Books by title
Three authors - three genres
Crime Thriller, Horror & Psychological Fiction

I had a lot of books vying for this letter, which is why I ended up with three. The first one is, Willow Walk, by SJI Holliday. Here's the blurb:

When the past catches up, do you run and hide or stand and fight?

When a woman is brutally attacked on a lonely country road by an escaped inmate from a nearby psychiatric hospital, Sergeant Davie Gray must track him down before he strikes again. But Gray is already facing a series of deaths connected to legal highs and a local fairground, as well as dealing with his girlfriend Marie's bizarre behaviour. As Gray investigates the crimes, he suspects a horrifying link between Marie and the man on the run - but how can he confront her when she's pushing him away? As a terrified Marie is pulled back into a violent past she thought she'd escaped, she makes an irrevocable decision. And when events come to a head at a house party on Willow Walk, can Gray piece together the puzzle in time to stop the sleepy town of Banktoun being rocked by tragedy once more?

I am a little bias with this writer, as Susi is also a personal friend. I met her a couple of years before she had the well deserved success she has now, and I love her writing. This is the second novel in a series of Crime Thriller novels, and my favourite of the three. Susi spins a dark, creepy atmosphere and lots of suspense in this novel, and I found it captivating. The killer is exceptionally dark and disturbing, keeping the reader on edge.

Susi has also branched out into a ghost story, with her novel The Lingering, which is also worth checking out. I have no doubt there will be more favourites for me with her novels.

*** second one is Weaveworld, by Clive Barker. Here's the blurb:

WEAVEWORLD is an epic adventure of the imagination. It begins with a carpet in which a world of rapture and enchantment is hiding; a world which comes to life, alerting the dark forces and beginning a desperate battle to preserve the last vestiges of magic which Humankind still has access to.

WEAVEWORLD is a book of visions and horrors, a story of quest, titanic struggles, of love and of hope. It is a triumph of imagination and storytelling, an adventure, a nightmare, a promise…

If anyone asks me where to start with Clive Barker, or my ultimate favourite of his, this is it. This book is perfect in its balance of other worldly and darkness. It encompasses concepts of magic and fairy tales, and brings the horror in, in original ways. He creates something so almost believable it is palpable. He has such fantastic descriptive powers, and like some of the creatures in this book, is able to enchant his reader with them.

Clive Barker is also a visual artist and you can find many illustrations on his website. He's also involved in making many of his films into video games too, due to the popularity of Hellraiser and the characters he created in that.

*** third one is, We Need to Talk About Kevin, by Lionel Shriver. Here's the blurb:
Eva never really wanted to be a mother; certainly not the mother of the unlovable boy who murdered seven of his fellow high school students, a cafeteria worker and a teacher who tried to befriend him. Now, two years later, it is time for her to come to terms with marriage, career, family, parenthood and Kevin's horrific rampage in a series of startlingly direct correspondences with her absent husband, Franklyn. Uneasy with the sacrifices and social demotion of motherhood from the start, Eva fears that her alarming dislike for her own son may be responsible for driving him so nihilistically off the rails.
I read this book for a bookclub I attended over a decade ago. I was also a new mother, which seemed to make this book more poignant. I would stand at the side of my son's cot many evenings and think about what I had read and how I was responsible for shaping his future mind and behaviour. I think any parent reading this book would be left with a feeling of uneasy and be provoked to think about how they influence their child. 

This book is full of shocking twists and turns, and leaves little to the imagination. It is blatant and honest, and direct. It leaves nothing to the imagination. And in a world where school shootings and killings are taking place on a more and more regular basis, parenthood is something that should come under scrutiny or at the very least something that is taught.

This book has never really left me. And whether it is really a 'favourite' - much like 1984 - it is a book that has had an impact and I would encourage others to read. 

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