Many do not know this, but I used to work at a small library in my hometown for a couple of years before I went back to school. It was a place I used to visit long before I started working there, in fact, I used to go there every week when I was younger to rent Jurassic Park since I didn’t own it on VHS. When I got hired there in my early twenties, I worked with creative workshops, events and book clubs (to name a few things) and my life was all about finding interesting books and encouraging people to read. These days I don’t have as much time for reading as I used to (and wish), but I still collect a whole lot of comics and I try to read them whenever I can.
I especially loved working at the Library around Halloween each year because we got to create so many fun things for our visitors to enjoy and I loved talking horror books and scary reads. One of the books that really engaged the book club I was working with at the time was Penpal by Dathan Auerbach. The fact that I love internet and digital culture is far from a secret (as you probably know by now), so when I found a creepypasta in book form I had to introduce it to more people.
Penpal is about a man who through non-linear chapters and recollections explore and discover that he has been followed by an unknown character throughout his childhood. It all starts when he enters kindergarten and with it, a penpal project, where all the children tie letters to balloons and send them off. While all the other children recieve letters from their newly found penpals, a more disturbing story awaits the narrator.
It’s the first book that I’ve read that has forced me to take breaks because it freaked me out. Not everything is explained and it challenges the reader to put the pieces together by him/herself. I really recommend it if you’re looking for a frightening read this Halloween!
Have you read any scary books lately?