Desert Island Ten: My Horror Bookshelf

Posted: 11/06/2011 in Books, Fiction, Horror, Writing
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Having just concluded a two-month marathon of watching all six seasons of Lost, I started thinking about what I’d want with me if I ended up on that island.  Especially if I was stationed in the hatch, punching in a numeric sequence every 108 minutes.  I tend to pack light when I travel, so if I’d actually been on Oceanic flight 815 I might have found myself short a few of my favorite things, but as for books, here’s a list of the top ten novels I would want populating my bamboo bookcase:

1. The Stand (Stephen King)

2. It (Stephen King)

3. Summer of Night (Dan Simmons)

4. Farenheit 451 (Ray Bradbury)

5. The Alienist (Caleb Carr)

6. Boy’s Life (Robert McCammon)

7. I Am Legend (Richard Matheson)

8. 1984 (George Orwell)

9. Twilight Eyes (Dean Koontz)

10. Hell House (Richard Matheson)

As for the second shelf (no bookcase is complete without a second shelf, right?) I’d have to include Just After Sunset, the Shining, and Duma Key (Stephen King), Heart Shaped Box (Joe Hill), Timeline (Michael Crichton), Something Wicked This Way Comes (Ray Bradbury), Velocity (Dean Koontz), Compulsion (Jonathan Kellerman), Swan Song (Robert McCammon), and The Last Ship (William Brinkley).  If I could get Fed-Ex to overnight me a few more (maybe on the Dharma sub), I’d also include the entire Gunslinger series (by King, of course).

And I would need an Underwood typewriter and several reams of paper. 

How about you?  What are some favorite books or stories that populate your Desert Island bookcase?

  1. donnagalanti says:

    Love this list! It by King is right up there and The Stand. Twilight Eyes by Koontz is one of my faves too. I love Fahrenheit 451 – it scares me not in a horror kind of way but OMG the world could be like this way…and blows my mind. Great list- nothing to add!

    • blackalchemy says:

      We are kindred readers, I think! I spotted Farenheit 451, a couple of Koontz books, a King, and one of my favorites (which I forgot about when populating my Desert Island bookcase), Bill Bryson, on the banner of your blog. Very cool, is that an image of your actual bookshelf? Isn’t it something how great stories and wonderful writers can connect people? 1984 and Farenheit 451 are very important books to me; they both center on the monumental importance words have in our lives, and how crucial it is for us as readers and writers to safeguard them.

  2. Paul D. Dail says:

    You’ve developed quite a little library on that desert island. Perhaps someone could bring you some tea? 🙂

    A good list, and some surprises. I remember doing a book report on Twilight Eyes in high school, I think. We had to design our own cover. I still vaguely remember it, but I remember enjoying the story. He used to be one of my favorites. Haven’t read much by him in quite awhile, though.

    Paul D. Dail A horror writer’s not necessarily horrific blog

    • blackalchemy says:

      Every good desert island should have a library (maybe even with a card catalog)! I’m not sure I’d be in a hurry to leave, as long as I had those books. 🙂

      I loved how Koontz altered the concept of vampire in Twilight Eyes to reflect monsters that feed on despair and pain. At the time that seemed so cool to me. Just like what King and Matheson did by removing the vampire from his crypt and putting him in a modern setting, Koontz upped the ante by letting them feed on psychic distress. Creepy cool! Wish you still had that book cover, that assignment sounds like fun!

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