Written by: David Blackthorn
Every genre has definitive works that set a standard. For twenty first century horror, The Exorcist is one of these definitive works. Anyone who enjoyed the movie should take the time to read the book which preceded it. The depth of the novel surpasses the film. The story line goes further, has more characters and sheds light on some things missing from the screenplay. This is not at all unusual, the books are usually more thorough.
So, what can be said about William Peter Blatty’s novel of a demon possessed girl? The story is disturbing and stays with you after you’re finished. Isn’t that what we look for in a horror novel? If it has a shocking impact, then the writer has done their job and done it well. Blatty does that with The Exorcist and does it very well.
The characters are very well developed, better than the movie. Father Damien Karris, battling his crisis of faith and loss of his mother makes him an excellent choice of a flawed yet likeable character. Blatty shows his knowledge of psychology along the way in the development of each character and in the techniques used to determine what could possibly be wrong with this child.
Many consider this to be the scariest novel ever written. If it’s not, then it certainly among the scariest. It definitely grabs the reader. I was unable to stop reading until I reached the last page. At that point. I wanted more. It was one of those books you don’t want to end.
If you’re looking for an outstanding horror novel to read, look no further than the exorcist. Beyond just being a clasic, this is one of those near perfect novels that you won’t be able put down, guaranteed to keep you awake and reading well into the night. Highly recommended.