You’re expecting me to go from The Casual Vacancy to Harry Potter or maybe the Robert Galbraith books, but I’m not going to do that. I’m goin’ crazy, y’all.
F’real though. The use of heroin and methadone in The Casual Vacancy is a huge theme which makes me think of Requiem for a Dream by Hubert Selby, Jr. it’s such the perfect description of the slippery slope down into addiction. It’s also a book that I’m too scared to watch the movie because I’m afraid I will be so disturbed the images will never leave my head.
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess is a book like that too. I had no issue getting through the book and the terrible descriptions of things happening, but I had to turn off the Kubrick movie halfway through because it was just too damn disturbing for me – which is saying a lot because I have a high tolerance for disturbing things.
If we’re talking about novels adapted to movies by Stanley Kubrick how could the next link not be The Shining by Stephen King. The movie is brilliant, the book is more brilliant. The Shining is a brilliant horror novel (incidentally, also about addiction), so where do we go from here?
How about a double connection and use Joe Hill’s brilliant novel Horns? Joe Hill is Steven King’s eldest son and Horns is a book about a man who wakes up as the devil (more or less). It’s a fascinating book that goes way beyond the horror genre into something examining what it means to be human.
I’ll move to Devil All the Time by Donald Ray Pollock, (I don’t need to explain that connection, do I?) it’s an absolutely brilliant novel written in the Southern Gothic tradition that completely entranced me with its bizarre and compelling cast of characters.
Let’s end with something new and delightful. Also with a bizarre and compelling cast of characters is The Shore by Sara Taylor. It’s also written in a Southern Gothic tradition and is enchanting and wonderful and incredibly readable.
Do you want to play? I know you do! Here’s how:
So that’s how you get from The Casual Vacancy to The Shore in six easy steps! Where do you go from The Casual Vacancy, Reader?