17 May 2011

House of Leaves

Since my last post was, essentially, a post about a cool horror thing you could totally look at, it only makes sense to continue this brand new tradition of mine to post about this book I've been absorbed in for the past three days: House of Leaves.

My own screwy words could hardly do it justice, and neither does Wikipedia's page (seeing as how it's an encyclopedia and not a literary critic), but here's an excerpt from its TVTropes page, paraphrased from a passage in the book:
Wait, no, that's still not right. Okay, you're interested in what House of Leaves is about, right? Well, this book is about that point directly behind your head. Don't look.Ω Don't take your eyes off this page, off the safe glow of the monitor, the comforting shapes of the letters making up this sentence. This is safe. What's behind you isn't. Keep reading these words. If you stop to look behind you, I can't guarantee you'll come out of this ordeal alive, much less sane. Pretty soon you might find yourself doubting what is real and what isn't. Pretty soon you might start to havethe nightmares. One day you'll wake up to find yourself an emaciated wreck who can't trust space and time anymore. Whether something is real or not doesn't matter here; the consequences are the same. What you need to realize is that this is not for you.

You can find some introductory readings online, I'm certain, and if you're interested in a complex, experimental, interlayered book that's sort of but not really about a Necronomicon-styled book written about a Blair-Witch-esque movie produced about a house with certain unorthodox geometries populated by a somewhat unhappy family, give it a google search. It's seriously the best book I've read in a long time. Google it. Look at the TV Tropes page and the Wikipedia page. It's brilliant.


  1. HoL is a great novel and like many others is hard to describe due to its genre warping nature.

    I'm a fan of Slipstream and Bizarro / New Weird and most folks just stare at you like a squirrel in headlights when you say that is what you read.

    Motorman (1972) by David Ohle is my latest read I usually rec to folks looking for something different. It will seem like a snack compared to HoL but a tasty snack it is.

    Also of note:

    Scorch Atlas by Blake Butler

    The Age of Wire and String by Ben Marcus

    The Collected Works of Billy the Kid by Michael Ondaatje

    Lives of the Monster Dogs by Kirsten Bakis

    Report On Probability A by Brian W. Aldiss

  2. I'm going to do my best to read all of those. Seriously. Reading new books is the best thing, especially when you have somebody recommending them to you ;)

    Through a roundabout way, I ended up on a page about New Weird books and I honestly never knew that books like that had a name. It's a bizarre feeling to discover that you have a new favorite genre that has been your favorite for half a decade.

  3. Starting with old school, then the New Wave writers I had sorta ran into a brick wall. Then along came Cyberpunk, which probably turned cliche faster than any genre in history. For several years I searched for my next genre. Then I found this:


    I have collected most of this list.

    Then I found these:



    Finally topping it off with the motherlode:


    And I recommend saving these pages to your HD for future reference if you are interested as they tend to come and go.

    Hope you find lots to like :)

  4. And I usually feel a person out before recommending Bizarro / New Weird stuff because it is so extreme (In title & content) and I'm not out to offend but enlighten whenever I can, but they seem to be sired from WS Burroughs so most folks can understand that reference at least :)