Top 5 Wednesday: Books With ‘Hard’ Themes

Top 5 Wednesday: Books With ‘Hard’ Themes

It’s the middle of the week, and that means it’s time for another Top 5 Wednesday. This week’s topic is ‘Books With Hard Themes’. I found making this list a little difficult but here we go:

5. A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness


I have chosen this book because it deals with the illness and death of a loved one, a topic I really struggle with. I haven’t experienced anything close to this and find it difficult to deal with. I also found the illustration in this made it even harder to deal with.

4. Darkly Dreaming Dexter by Jeff Lindsay


This series (as I’m sure most of you know) is told from the perspective of a serial killer. The disturbing thing is that when Dexter kills, the narration doesn’t make it feel wrong. You feel like he is doing the right thing, it seems normal until you stop and think about it.

3. The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks


I chose to read this book because it was on my brother’s reading list for school. I read it intending to help him and then promptly forgot to mention it too him. This book deals with serious mental health problems, deliberate animal cruelty and experimentation on children. It was quite disturbing but an excellent read.

2. Anything Written By Chuck Palahniuk


I discovered Chuck Palahniuk when I was about fifteen after watching Fight Club. I then went through a phase of reading as many of his books as possible. Every book has difficult and disturbing themes. I wish I could talk about one in particular but they have blurred together in my memory, forming one long, confusing and disturbing montage. I would definitely recommend reading a few of his books.

1. American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis


This is without a doubt the most disturbing novel I have ever read. Again told from the perspective of a serial killer, this book is completely different to Dexter. This first person narrative discusses what he is wearing and the brutal murder of prostitutes in the same mundane tone. Nothing is off limits and I found it sickening at times. It’s an internal monologue with no plot, you can’t even take a story with you after reading it. It’s a masterpiece.

What is your favourite book that discusses hard themes? Let me know in the comments.

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