The World’s Creepiest Places by Bob Curran (Book Review)
Plot: There are some places in the world where humans quite simply should not go. Not just haunted places, but sites where ancient forces still hold sway. We can recognize such locations by the responses they evoke within usthat feeling we call “the creeps.” Visit spooky locations from Ireland through the empty deserts of the Middle East, to the misty hills of Tibet and back through Europe to America.
My Review: I love books like this, or rather I want to love books like this. I always loved watching and reading stories about hauntings and other strange activity. But in the last year or two, every time I’ve picked up a book like this it always manages to disappoint me because it goes on and on about the history of the place that doesn’t always appeal to me. This book is no different.
The book contains 25 scary destinations in 25 chapters. Out of those 25, only 5 take place in the USA. Now, I get it the book is titled “WORLD’s” Creepiest Places. But I assumed there would be more taking place in the USA. Why is this a big deal to me? Well, in my experience, when a scary story takes place in another country it usually takes place anywhere between the 1500’s – 1900 and includes in depth history lessons with tons of names of people and places I just cannot retain. Maybe its my ADD that makes books like this harder for me to retain and get through, I’m not sure. But when I start to lose interest in a book like this, and its not picked back up, I read it slowly and just feel “pressured” to continue to read it if I’m that far through it. And sadly that’s exactly what happened with this book.
When I review these kinds of books I like to do a breakdown of each story with their own individual rating and then average it out, picking the most liked (or most hated) and giving those mini reviews. This time around I’m not going to do that because of the “not retaining” some of the stories. I will however point out some that I did enjoy and did retain.
Chase Mausoleum (Christ Church, Barbados): I really enjoyed the story of the chase Mausoleum. It’s the story of this Mausoleum which is locked up tightly and just about every time it is reopened all but one of the caskets are thrown around the room. It happens numerous times until finally its closed for good. That would have been some creepy site to see!
Csejth Castle (Csejth, Hungary): The story of Csejth Castle is the story of Elizabeth Bathory, who was known for killing virgins and bathing in their blood to appear more youthful. Pretty grotesque! But an interesting read.
Waverly Hills Sanatorium (Louisville, Kentucky): If you are a horror movie fan, or a ghost hunting fan, you already know about this place. It was an old tuberculosis hospital and it is known for being one of the most haunted locations in America. Honestly, I didn’t learn much from this story I hadn’t already known from watching haunting shows on TV. But it was still a fun read.
Winchester Mystery House (San Jose, California): I love this house. I have been fascinated by it for years. Since I was a teenager. It just for some reason completely amazes me that some little old lady would create this giant house with stairs and windows leading to nowhere. Again, I didn’t learn really anything new about the house, but not surprising as I’ve read a lot about it in the past. Still I got through the chapter pretty quickly because I was interested in it.
One brief mention, there are no photographs in this book. There are very good drawings, but no photographs. This isn’t that big of a deal, but I would think with a book specifically about locations, that the author would have wanted to include some photos.
Overall: This wasn’t exactly what I was expecting out of this book when I first picked it up. While the writing and stories are good, they just did not interest me, and for that alone I’m giving it the rating I’m giving it. I ended up skimming over 2-3 of the chapters later in the book because I couldn’t force myself to read anymore. I wanted something more modern I suppose.