5 Disturbing Novels You Won’t Be Able to Put Down

It’s easy to become complacent as a consumer of horror films – the gore and scares are right there for you to see. If you haven’t delved into the world of horror novels, then you could be missing out on some of the most graphic and disturbing depictions of your nightmares – ones that movies will never do justice. You see, with books, your imagination is forced to do the work for you – and we all know our imagination is one of the most terrifying things of all.

Gone to See the River Man by Kristopher Triana (2020)

“Gone to See the River Man” is a graphic horror novel written by Kristopher Triana. It centers around Lori, an extreme fanatic obsessed with an infamous serial killer named Edmund Cox. Cox brutally murdered more than twenty women, but despite his truly sickening crimes, Lori forges a relationship with him by visiting him in prison and writing letters to him regularly. However, when Edmund gives her an ominous task, she jumps at the chance to prove her devotion to him, blissfully unaware of the horrors that await her.

Edmund instructs Lori to retrieve a key from his cabin in the woods of Killen and deliver it to a mysterious legend known only as The River Man. In her eagerness to please Edmund, Lori brings her handicapped sister along on the dangerous journey upriver. As they travel, Lori is forced to confront her personal demons, which she believes bond her to Edmund.

However, the trip soon turns into a surreal nightmare as the river runs with flesh, the cabin is filled with unimaginable horrors, and The River Man may not be just a legend after all.

The Troop by Nick Cutter (2014)

“The Troop” is a sickening body-horror novel by Canadian author Nick Cutter. The story revolves around a group of five teen scouts and their scoutmaster as they venture onto a remote island off the coast of Prince Edward Island for a fun-filled camping expedition. The group’s plans quickly spiral when a sick and emaciated stranger arrives on the island seeking help and refuge.

However, the stranger is carrying something deadly, and it quickly begins spreading amongst the group. With infection, they begin experiencing horrifyingly grotesque physical and psychological transformations. As desperation mounts, the group’s bond is tested, and they must fight for their survival against each other and the monstrous creatures they become.

If body-horror is what sits with you – then I can’t recommend this book enough. The graphic descriptions of gore are unlike any other. But the author also explores themes of isolation, survival, and the limits of human morality in the face of extreme circumstances. It is a chilling tale that delves into the darkness of human nature and the fragility of the human body and mind. Think “Lord of the Flies,” except the gruesome nature knows no limits.

Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter (2015)

“Pretty Girls” is a page-turning thriller novel by Karin Slaughter. The plot follows two sisters, Claire and Lydia, who have been estranged for many years due to a tragedy that tore their family apart. When Claire’s husband is murdered in a brutal mugging, Lydia reaches out to her sister, and the two come together to confront their painful pasts and unravel the dark mystery behind Paul’s death. They unknowingly uncover a web of sadistic lies and deception that leads them to discover that Paul was not the man they thought he was.

While a little slow at first, it is one of my favorite books to date – I could not put it down! It explores themes of family, loss, trauma, and the lengths that people will go to keep their secrets hidden. It is a gripping, suspenseful, and disturbing story that delves into the dark side of human nature.

The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks (1984)

“The Wasp Factory” is an eerie novel written by Scottish author Iain Banks. The story is narrated by 16-year-old Frank Cauldhame, who lives with his father on a remote Scottish island. Frank is a reclusive and disturbed character with a deep fascination for death – your classic psychopathic killer in the making, kind of kid.

On the island, Frank has a secret “laboratory” where he performs disturbing experiments on animals and carries out twisted rituals involving a homemade device with wasps called “The Wasp Factory.” The novel follows Frank as he tries to come to terms with his past and his present while awaiting the arrival of his clinically insane older brother after he escapes the facility.

As the story unfolds, dark secrets are revealed about Frank’s family and his past, and the novel builds to a shocking and violent climax that had my head spinning. There are strong themes of identity and morality, as well as the line between sanity and madness. Frank is perhaps one of the most unhinged characters I’ve ever come across.

Tender is the Flesh by Agustina Bazterrica (2017)

“Tender Is the Flesh” is a dystopian novel written by Argentine author Agustina Bazterrica. It is set in a horrifying world where a virus has wiped out all animals, leading to humans being raised and consumed as meat. Yes, it’s as graphic and terrifying as it sounds. I’m sure veganism would have been the more rational approach?

The book follows Marcos, a divorced man who works in a slaughterhouse specializing in human meat. While he is initially repulsed by the idea of consuming human flesh, Marcos becomes increasingly desensitized to the horrors of his job as he struggles to maintain his sanity and moral compass in a world where cannibalism is considered “normal”. Over time, Marcos begins to question the morality of his actions and the society he lives in, leading him on a dangerous path of rebellion and self-discovery as he begins a questionable relationship with a meat-bred human.

The book explores themes of morality, identity, and the consequences of extreme societal norms. It is a disturbing and thought-provoking novel that challenges readers to confront their own beliefs about food, ethics, and the limits of human cruelty. The ending will have you dry heaving into the pages.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *