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I have to get my hands on this story! The only book I've read is Beasts, and it's pretty intensely dark and creepy, too. Creepy people, creepy actions, quite unsettling. I love her ability to throw me off kilter.


I haven't read a lot of her stuff yet although I keep meaning to read more. What I have read though has all pretty much had a darkness running through it, some more than others.


The Joyce Carol Oates novel I read was creepy enough, and that wasn't even billed as a horror story! I was very impressed by her and think she is a profoundly disturbing writer. I'd like to read more of her work, but perhaps not this one.... I can see myself having to sleep with the light on.

Dorothy W.

Oh, that story does sound frightening! I'm reading your post and imagining what it was that might have happened to them -- maybe it's best to read and find out rather than wonder about it? I don't know -- Oates is disturbing indeed.


"disquieting intensity" - I love that. I've only read a bit by Oates and would say that's a great description. I tried to read Haunted: Tales of the Grotesque and the stories I did get to read I found very unnerving. Sadly it was one of those books I had to return to the library but I need to find a copy again.


Andi--Strangely, I sort of like that ability as well. I think I am going to read Beasts next as I am very interested now in her work!
Tanabata--I've read two stories now and both were dark and unsettling. I am curious about some of her more popular novels (like We Were the Mulvaneys) and if they have that same quality to them. I need to read more and find out.
Litlove--I think I am going to read Beasts, and I'm glad it's not a horror story, though it sounds creepy all the same. She's very talented in being able to throw her reader off balance. It makes me curious to read more about her. I think she is a professor--I can't imagine taking a class of hers (though I'd love to be a fly on the wall).
Dorothy--I didn't want to give too much away and I hope you do read the story. One thing I expected as she alluded to it and even sort of downplayed it, but the other thing came out of left field and just gave me an icky feeling. I kept wondering if the girl was just dreaming?!
Iliana--I have that book, and I didn't realize that this story is one that is in that collection. I am going to have to dig it out now, though I wonder if I can read a whole book of stories like this in one go?! And isn't disquieting intensity a great phrase? I need to remember that!

Carl V.

This story sounds great. I've read some Joyce Carol Oates in the past and have really enjoyed her stories. This one sounds deliciously creepy and unsettling.


I'm almost embarrassed to admit that I've not read anything by Oates. I have quite a few of her novels but have never gotten around to reading them. Maybe I should start with one of her short stories.


I just purchased 'The Mammoth Book of Modern Ghost Stories' over the weekend and now I'm even more excited to read it.

I remember reading an eerie Joyce Carol Oates story years ago about a teenage girl alone in her house and a strange man who comes out of nowhere stands outside and accosts her. Really creepy.


Carl--It's very creepy. I've just started Beasts, which promises to be another interesting read. I still want to read some of her more "mainstream" (for lack of a better word) books.
Lisa--I read Where Are You Going, Where Have You been, which is a widely anthologized story. It's really well done, but unsettling in a different way. I also have several of her books and need to read more of her work.
Joanna--This is a great collection. I want to buy a copy myself. I've already checked it out from the library twice. You should also read Daphne du Maurier's The Pool! I wonder if the story you mention is in her book Haunted, which I have somewhere on my shelves. I need to find it, though I wonder if I can handle a whole book of stories like this?

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