Saturday, April 3, 2010

The Fury by John Farris (1976): Signifying Nothing

While this is certainly a 1970s classic of bestseller horror novels, with its cover blurb invoking past successes, The Fury is precisely the kind of book I have little interest in: psychic children, psychokinesis, mindreading, corrupt government scientists and shadowy multinational organizations, all that jazz. Didn't even make it 100 pages; while John Farris is quite a good writer, even a notch or two above Stephen King's contemporaneous work, I've no patience with pseudoscience when used as a plot device in horror novels. Creepy kids for sure, terrific illustration, cheesy and surreal at once. Are the kids "sexy, violent, psychic, sadistic"? Or is the blurb describing the book? Can a book be psychic? Is it reading my mind? Does it know I'm bored to tears? And lookit them Buster Browns - a sure sign that's the '70s!

I liked his next novel, All Heads Turn When the Hunt Goes By; I read that a long time ago, and I plan to write it up here upon a rereading. If anybody's read The Fury and can recommend it, I might have another go. I simply have plenty of other horror to read!


AmandaMLyons said...

I watched the movie and I can't really focus enough on it to call it that great. So probably best on your meh list.

Beading Boy said...

Give this book another try, it is really quite good. So many people give King all the credit as being the best, he's not. His early stuff is still his best. The Fury's sequels (3 of them) are really interesting too. I have read these books and enjoyed them very much. Give it another won't be disappointed. Well, maybe.