And now, for this last week of October, we have a scary book. And it’s a good one, so pay attention.
Penpal by Dathan Auerbach
Plot: 10 Characterization: 9 Writing: 10
This book was just amazing. I actually didn’t first read it when it was a book but online when it was just a series of posts the author made. It was so popular that he had a Kickstarter and raised enough money to not only e-publish it but also to print physical copies of the book. And I’m not surprised because it’s really an excellent read.
The writing is good (that 10 was not given out lightly), very deep and easy to get lost in. The story is the narrator piecing together strange events from his childhood that he assumed were unrelated at the time, but looking back on it as an adult, he can only conclude that someone was stalking him. Their motives are unknown but as the book goes on, it’s obvious that whatever the stalker wants, it isn’t good.
The book isn’t very long, but thoroughly enjoyable. Everything about it feels realistic and natural, which of course enhances the terror. Unfortunately, it’s a bit limited by being in a first person-limited point of view. The characterizations of the other people could have been more fleshed out, like the narrator’s mother and a few other adults. It’s not really detrimental to the story as a whole or anything, just a minor issue. Overall, if you like non-paranormal horror, yes, get this now.