Although Halloween is over and spooky season is slumbering until next year, there are those of you out there who love a good scare all year round. If that’s you, we recommend checking out this list from Tor.com that features a bunch of books that combine the occult with the ordinary. It had me thinking that merging mundane objects with dark myth-making has to be one of the most popular storytelling urges, even for amateurs. My siblings and I used to prank our younger brother with tales that before he was born, we had another sibling but now because of an evil ghost they were trapped inside the radiator. Whenever the heat turned on and the clanging began, we’d resurrect the story and explain that was the trapped sibling was banging on the inside of the radiator way of trying to communicate with us. Pretty mean of us thinking back on it now. And although he said he didn’t believe us, he seemed pretty scared!
Something that I love about horror, no matter its subgenre, is when it can take something harmless and ordinary—like a rubber ball, or a button, or a VHS tape—and turn it into a symbol of terror.
We see this phenomenon play out in horror movies all the time—you can barely mention the Final Destination franchise without someone bringing up that the second installment spooked them out of driving near lumber trucks forever—but what about books that shape how you interact with stuff that really shouldn’t be that scary?
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