Who is your favourite horrorwriter AFTER King?

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kingricefan

All-being, keeper of Space, Time & Dimension.
Jul 11, 2006
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It's hard to say where the line is between horror and fantasy sometimes. The main criterion to me is that for me to call it horror, it should be dark. There should be a dark sensibility to it. Barker always had that I feel. King too: The Dark Tower (well, the title alone gives that away) is fantasy with dark elements.

I personally sometimes prefer dark fantasy more than horror, because it feels richer to me. The thing about horror is that at a certain point you start to come across similar story elements over and over: ghosts, demons, vampires, werewolves, witches, the dead coming back. In dark fantasy you can have these elements, but do new things with them. And Barker has always been good at coming up with new subjects and ideas that feel fresh.
In The Hills, The City is a perfect example of this. It's my favorite Barker story.
 

Gerald

Well-Known Member
Sep 8, 2011
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In The Hills, The City is a perfect example of this. It's my favorite Barker story.
It's a favourite of many.

I think the reason Barker went more into (dark) fantasy is because after his early work like Books of Blood, he felt he'd shed enough blood for a while. He felt like branching out more, to get out of those confines of purely horror.

He's such a nice person in real life, but I saw a recent photo and the coma didn't do him good. He looks a lot older now. Although photos are always a snapshot of the moment and not always the best indication. Too bad it's real hard to find any recent visual interview footage,
 

Gerald

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Sep 8, 2011
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Actually the one Ramsey Campbell novel that was translated here was 'The Influence'. I read it, but don't remember it that well. The cool thing is: it is now filmed in Spain, just like The Nameless and Pact of the Fathers. The trailer looks really good. It should be released in June in Spain, I hope it becomes available here too,
 

Kurben

The Fool on the Hill
Apr 12, 2014
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59,692
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sweden
Thats difficult. Straub? no i dont think so. Barker is not quite there. McCammon? possibly. Simmons is another alternative. For more recent authors i call it a tie between McCammon and Simmons. Hill might reach there in a few years. If you looking for an easier read there is Bentley Little, very competent but not too long. And Adam Neville. Their stories are simpler, mot as komplex as the before mentioned. And if youre loking for dark suspense there is Koontz and Maberry (i prefer him before Koontz usually)
For older authors there is Poe and Lovecraft but also M:R. James and Shirley Jackson.

And i'm sure i forget someone.
 

Gerald

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Sep 8, 2011
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No one names Poe, who basically is the father of them all. Without him probably none of the others would exist. Nor many writers in the detective and science fiction genres.

While I like his stories and they have brilliant ideas behind them, could he perhaps be too literary to be enjoyed on the same level as the others?
 

Gerald

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Sep 8, 2011
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Concerning Koontz, I noticed that he doesn't always tie up loose ends in his books. I noticed it in The Eyes of Darkness, although it's too long ago to remember the details.
But I was reading Chase, which is an early 1972 novel. It's about a Vietnam veteran who intervenes with a murder attempt on a couple in a car in a lover's lane situation, and then gets stalked and threatened by the killer himself.
I quite liked the book, but at a certain point Koontz makes a big point about the killer knowing the name and whereabouts of Ben Chase' (the Vietnam veteran) new girlfriend. He even ends the chapter on it, where Chase emphasizes it was impossible for the killer to know this and he would have to be supernatural to know (which he isn't).
Yet at the conclusion where Chase confronts the killer in person, he never gets back to it. It just remains totally unclear how he knew.

Anyone else noticed Koontz leaving ends hanging?
 

GNTLGNT

The idiot is IN
Jun 15, 2007
85,106
339,821
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Concerning Koontz, I noticed that he doesn't always tie up loose ends in his books. I noticed it in The Eyes of Darkness, although it's too long ago to remember the details.
But I was reading Chase, which is an early 1972 novel. It's about a Vietnam veteran who intervenes with a murder attempt on a couple in a car in a lover's lane situation, and then gets stalked and threatened by the killer himself.
I quite liked the book, but at a certain point Koontz makes a big point about the killer knowing the name and whereabouts of Ben Chase' (the Vietnam veteran) new girlfriend. He even ends the chapter on it, where Chase emphasizes it was impossible for the killer to know this and he would have to be supernatural to know (which he isn't).
Yet at the conclusion where Chase confronts the killer in person, he never gets back to it. It just remains totally unclear how he knew.

Anyone else noticed Koontz leaving ends hanging?
...I've read just about everything he's written, and you're right-he has left some loose ends on several.....
 

Gerald

Well-Known Member
Sep 8, 2011
1,751
5,465
The Netherlands
...I've read just about everything he's written, and you're right-he has left some loose ends on several.....
It surprises me, because he is such a precise writer. His prose is very precise, because he writes a page several times until he's totally satisfied with it. Yet story-wise he doesn't tie up all the ends.
 
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