I don’t usually go out of my way to read something spooky for Halloween, but I needed an excuse to read The Exorcist, which I bought on a whim from a charity shop years ago. I hadn’t actually realised it was a book, having only heard of the film, banned for being shocking and obscene. And so I started reading, feeling a bit nervous and hoping that I would not be spending the next week having nightmares.
I was surprised to find that the book wasn’t actually all that scary. There were moments where I thought something terrifying was on the verge of happening, but then the tension petered out and I was left feeling a mixture of mild disappointment and extreme relief. This seemed to be a pattern in The Exorcist. There would be a slow lead up, with gradually more tension filling the pages, until the reader is on the edge of their chair and peering through fingertips. Then everything would stop, the child would fall asleep and it would be back to the beginning for the boring lead up to start all over again. Continue reading