Haunted: A Novel

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Haunted: A Novel

by Chuck Palahniuk

Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group | April 11, 2006 | Trade Paperback

Haunted: A Novel is rated 3.9048 out of 5 by 21.
Haunted is a novel made up of twenty-three horrifying, hilarious, and stomach-churning stories. They’re told by people who have answered an ad for a writer’s retreat and unwittingly joined a “Survivor”-like scenario where the host withholds heat, power, and food. As the storytellers grow more desperate, their tales become more extreme, and they ruthlessly plot to make themselves the hero of the reality show that will surely be made from their plight. This is one of the most disturbing and outrageous books you’ll ever read, one that could only come from the mind of Chuck Palahniuk.

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 432 pages, 8.01 × 5.17 × 0.93 in

Published: April 11, 2006

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 1400032822

ISBN - 13: 9781400032822

Found in: Fiction and Literature

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from quite the pick-up Palahniuk has always been a favorite of mine, having had no knowledge of this book going into it, i would say that the main story while its quite disturbing (and what palahniuk book isn't) is a little slow at first and near the middle, but the ending is fantastic cause i love how he portrays human tragedy, kind of like diary, his other works. Apart from the main story, the short stories are what sell this book, i wish we studied them in school cause they are amazing to read. The only bummer i would say is that u can't really talk about this book unless someone else has read it, cause people gave me looks like i just escaped a game of saw.
Date published: 2013-02-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A great introduction to Palahniuk! ***MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS*** I have heard so many great things about Chuck Pahlaniuk that one day, many years ago, I bought his book Haunted. Years passed and I still hadn’t opened the darn thing. Instead, I decided to wait until the day where I felt inclined to grab it off the shelf, walk away from the books (since it’s so easy for me to change my mind), and just start reading. I don’t want to say that I was disappointed, but I kind of was. Don’t get me wrong – I really loved Pahlaniuk’s writing and hope to get into another book I have of his, Lullaby, sometime soon. What got me was that I read so many reviews where people were squirming in their seats and it was really only the first chapter that did that for me. In my eyes, the first chapter is what sets up the rest of the book—it has to be enough to grab me so I can keep reading. The first chapter of Haunted definitely got me. I was quite happy that I wasn’t eating at the time, but after that, the book just didn’t have the same effect. It was a decent book, full of aspiring writers who are at a sort of writing camp. Little did they know that they were going to be kidnapped by a madman who wants them to write the best story of their life. I kind of felt that the finger and toe chopping happened a little early that as the book progressed, I wondered what was going to happen next. Well, even though the stories written by the kidnapped (24 chapters in total, 23 “stories” written by characters in the book, along with an accompanying poem) seemed to get a little tame after the first chapter, what actually went on in the house started to make me squirm again—I don’t want to completely give it away, but it has to do with the “below the belt” area and very sharp objects. I was happy to finish reading Haunted, but I did leave feeling intrigued by Pahlaniuk’s writing. I can’t wait to give more of his work a try. Haunted did a great job of taking seemingly ordinary people and showing the reader their dark side—as a reader, you start the book just knowing their nickname and then you’re slowly taken into the story of “why” behind that name. Of course, there’s not only the gory and gruesome, there are also some very hilarious moments. Someone hacking off their manhood, only to have someone else eat it and choke on it, leaving both characters dead, was just a funny part to read. Thanks for reeling me in, Chuck Pahlaniuk!
Date published: 2012-01-13
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Not for the Squeamish Before reading this book the only exposure I had to Palahniuk was the movie Fight Club so to say this book hit me upside the head would be an understatement. Palahniuk creates a story in which the grotesque and gory become ordinary and at times the stories become physically difficult to read they are so graphic. The story itself is interesting and the premise is rather original so if you can withstand the graphic descriptions this book may be worth your while
Date published: 2009-10-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting A bunch of fame craving "want-to-be" artists signed themselves up for a freaky retreat in the hope of putting on hold their daily mundane lives for a chance to create some great works. They did, in some ways, each told their stories of how crooked and horrid things can go when you let it so. Extremely explicit and visual in the depiction of gory details. This is the only work of novel so far that when I was bombarded with "what you're reading?" from my already-19-yet-a-bit-naive-students, I actually halted them from flipping; after my honest general description of the storyline they retreated willingly on their own. I have always been a bit of a fan for Chuck Palahniuk, especially since Lullaby. But when I first got hold of a new copy of "Haunted" a few years back, I actually put it back down. I couldn't get pass the boring bus trip (prelude) and was not warmed to the idea of a compilation of short stories. Now, on a re-read (or first reading in truth) of "Haunted", it is actually quite interesting. If the attention can for once not only focus on goriness, then one can see how human behaviour sometimes is more suitable as materials for nightmares then their supernatural counterpart. For the highly controversial "Guts", I didn't mind the corn and peanuts, it was more so the idea of how desperate we can be when we are truly desperate, and hope that I would never put myself to this extent of desperation.
Date published: 2009-10-12
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Gut-Wrenching Here is the twisted story about a group of writers with writers’ block. They answer an ad to have this cured. Basically they all think they are going to a secluded place for a month to focus on their thoughts and write the best story known to man. Once they get there, they realize it’s nothing more than a prison. They are locked inside a house with enough food to last the month but it wasn’t the paradise they were expecting. Haunted is a collection of short stories within a longer story. The short stories are of how each character came to be in the house, and the longer story is what they do when they are there. Believe me, it’s gruesome! I was reading this book through squinted eyes hoping nothing would come out and get me. They compete in a twisted game of “who can survive the worst amount of pain and suffering” so that when they leave the house they will be the one with the most gut-wrenching but heroic survival story. Read more at: http://justkickinit.ca/2008/09/27/haunted-by-chuck-palahniuk/
Date published: 2008-10-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Haunted doesn't even cut it! *shudders* If you can make it past the first chapter, then you can surely read the entire book. I started reading this on the bus, and I can only imagine what my face (horror struck) looked like to other riders. Truly haunting and completely disturbing, Palahniuk takes you off to a "writer's retreat" for a couple of months with a group of people who share their stories. Right from the start, something is "off" and it doesn't take long for things to start getting creepy.
Date published: 2008-08-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from The bowling ball was a police cover-up: A review of Haunted by Chuck Palahniuk I finally built up the nerve to read HAUNTED. When Chuck Palahniuk came to Winnipeg in 2007 during the RANT tour he read the story “Guts.” You know all the rumours about “the guts effect” – about how people pass out during the reading of the story? I didn’t pass out, but almost. It was the corn and peanuts. I’ve been putting this one off . . . so that’s bias. Here’s the review. I don’t think this is Palahniuk’s best work. There are, however, some really good stories here. “Guts” is a story for the history books. It is the first short so you’ll be done with it quickly. “Slumming” is pure Tom Wolfe, in my opinion. Slumming is about rich people slumming, poverty is the new rich, etc etc. This is a mirror of Wolfe’s essay on the Radical Chic . . . well done and brutal in Palahniuk’s special way. “Hot Potting” is truly gruesome and “Punch Drunk” made me laugh most of the way through. I think “Exodus” is a masterpiece: “This is just what human beings do – turn objects into people, people into objects” (158). No one knew just how ready she would be. Straight to it: I could have done without the entire writers’ collective retreat. I found it unnecessary, a bit confusing, and under-written. Not to mention that there is too many characters and you just don’t really care about any of them . . . so when they lop off their digits (see also Katherine Dunn, Geek Love) you aren’t really much bothered by it. A few too many clichés as it unfolds. But . . . as a collection of short stories Haunted is quite good. The bonus feature is this. Haunted reads very much like Chuck Palahniuk’s “philosophy.” It is a collection of poetry, short stories, and the narrative about the retreat . . . but we encounter in aphoristic form most of what Palahniuk holds dear. At times it reads like an autobiography as odd as that might sound. Not an autobiography in any literal sense, I hope. The margins that fall apart. The horrific. Going to the place you fear. Holding on to the story to make sense of things. Telling the story. Breaking yourself to make something better. Losing everything to be free. Accepting things how they are. Knowing that you’re going to die. Taking hold of one’s destiny: “Yes, terrible things happen, but sometimes those terrible things – they save you” (205). All the classic Palahniukian themes are here and illustrated through these shorts . . .and that’s the reason to cherish this disgusting and grotesque collection. “… Offer the chance to punch your face at ten bucks a shot, and you can make some real money” (183).
Date published: 2008-06-17
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Horrible rather than Horror This book is a complete waste of time. In this book Palahnuik is just "gross" of the sake of disturbing the reader. And even at that he fails, this book did not disturb me, this book failed to illicit any reaction from me beyond boredom, and annoyance at having wasted my time.
Date published: 2008-06-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from one of the best This is definately one of Chuck Palahniuk's best novels out there. How someone can juggle so many main characters i dont know, but he pulls it off and keeps you lapping up every word. Hes a genius and this book proves it.
Date published: 2008-03-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Not a book for everyone This was only my second Palahniuk novel, and boy was I unprepared. I want to say I enjoyed the book, but saying that I enjoyed it sort of gives me the feeling that I'm sick and twisted. The book is one to read if you too are sick and twisted with an incredibly dark sense of humour. I read things in this book that I actually couldn't believe I was reading. At several points I had to go back and read again what I thought was simply too twisted to be in a book. Each time it was real. I was reading it. It was generally after these realizations that I had to put the book down and take a break. Kudos to Chuck Palahniuk for making me feel more uncomfortable than I have ever felt while reading a book.
Date published: 2008-01-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Yay for Yuck This book was foul... as in incredibly gross. I swear I read most of this novel cringing and shuddering. It was so very odd, and yet somehow humourous and engaging. Wierd.
Date published: 2008-01-18
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Disgusting and not in the way I thought! I like scary books. I like gory books. I do not like books where little boys please themselves in odd ways. EW. I was so not expecting this and to be honest I didn't even finish the first "short story."
Date published: 2007-02-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Never will CPR be the same.... Love Chuck. Love this book. Let the cynics and manics unite!
Date published: 2007-02-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Nauseating I found myself more than once having difficulty continuing reading Haunted. At times the novel got so graphic I had to force myself to turn the page. Now that I've finished the novel I can truly appreciate the amount of exposure that Chuck Palahniuk put in Haunted and how glad I am I kept turning the pages. Haunted may not be for the faint at heart, but even those that get nauseated easily should pull up a seat and read Haunted. Simply just to read Haunted for its controversial views is reason enough to go and purchase this novel by Chuck Palahniuk. The issues he covers in Haunted about society are complex and insightful; a 360 degree view of life in the 21st century. Reading Haunted is almost like reading the development and growth of anti-morals in our society. Teaching you the different levels of how people and society have become corrupted. In the end, I loved this book, I think everyone should read it, even though its left me scarred for life.
Date published: 2006-12-07
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Haunted? More like bored If you're looking for a book that will scare you, make your hair stand straight and keep you up at night......this isn't the one! I have no idea what the numerous reviewers were thinking when they went on and on about how gory and terrifying this book was......cuz it wasn't...with the exception of the first short story "Guts". The plot of the story is very weak and i struggled trying to get through to the end. The only thing that kept me going were the short stories in between, and I still do not understand what the purpose of this "writers retreat" was. This novel shouldn't be considered a horror novel but a comedy....a sick comedy but a comedy nonetheless. I laughed at a couple of stories due to how sick and strange they were....sick but not scary. Save your money and just borrow this book from the library.
Date published: 2006-06-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Definitely Haunting Though not for every reader, Palahniuk fans will enjoy something new in a familiar style. Chuck's addictively cynical view of the 21st century seeps through, as he once again chronicles the antics of the depraved. This story of desperate authors blurs the lines between victim and aggressor as they find themselves trapped in a theater while collectively writing a novel. His anti-heroes will leave you afraid to turn the page, but afraid not to. A word to the wise: wait a half -hour after eating before you sink your teeth into this macabre tale.
Date published: 2006-06-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from So sick it's so good If you like your head being played with, this is the book to read. I went from laughing, to feeling sick to my stomach in 2 seconds flat. Every character's story will keep you wondering what the next in line has to say. I've found myself thinking "what the.." during the narrator's storytelling and was questionning myself; "Would I be doing the same thing this group of people is doing? Is fame and fortune worth it?" Overall an entertaining read but most likely not for everyone. This novel is blunt with a capital B. This is my first Chuck Palahniuk book. Fight Club is my favorite movie and I'll be buying the book soon, as well as all the other books by this author.
Date published: 2006-06-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Palahniuk Rules A great novel. Some stories are pretty disgusting though. Each chapter has a section of the story, followed by a poem about one of the characters and a short story which involves the character and gives you more background information on them. Usually the short stories indicate how each of the characters got their names. A very sexually disturbing book. I suggest reading Guts and Exodus
Date published: 2006-03-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Readers Beware Chuck Palahniuk is most known as the author of Fight Club, the book that became the movie with Brad Pitt and Ed Norton; and overnight Palahniuk had a cult following. Erie, scary, and terrifying; if I had to use three words to describe this book, that would be it. Robert A. Heinlien the classic Science Fiction author once quipped “One man’s theology is another man’s belly laugh.” Of this book I would state, “One man’s perversion is another man’s pleasure.” This book will hit both, depending on who you are and your sensibilities. This book is a collection of short stories, written by characters who are on a writer’s retreat. They all responded to an ad to give up three months of your life and create the masterpiece you have always said you would . Each of the 18 respondents had an idea of where they would be going - to a large country estate, a camp in the woods; yet the reality is they get locked into an old ornate theatre house. They have food, shelter, and facilities, yet all doors are locked, all windows bricked over and no way out. From there the book becomes a cross between Fear Factor, Survivor and your most feared horror story. We see the depths to which people will descend to achieve fame and riches. Palahniuk, during the current book tour, was reading the first story called ‘Guts’ and to date there have been 63 people who have passed out with many people being injured falling into book cases in book stores. This book will at times, turn your stomach, but will give you an understanding of the darkest side of human nature. Readers beware! This book is like the fight club movie on super steroids.
Date published: 2005-09-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Breath taking My God, this book caught me from the first paragraph and took every good thought I have ever had about chuck, and tripled it. This is an amazing piece of literary work and Palahniuks use of language captures attention tighter than ever before. Each story is better than the last, but they all are strong enough for you to remember every story so strongly right up until the end. a definite add to any palaniuk collection.
Date published: 2005-06-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AMAZING! I am a huge Chuck Palahniuk fan and his new novel impressed me more than his previous few. His writing is great, the stories are excellent, and the novel is really amazing. I would highly recommend this novel for any Chuck Palahniuk fan, or anyone who likes a very intriguing read.
Date published: 2005-05-08

– More About This Product –

Haunted: A Novel

by Chuck Palahniuk

Format: Trade Paperback

Dimensions: 432 pages, 8.01 × 5.17 × 0.93 in

Published: April 11, 2006

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 1400032822

ISBN - 13: 9781400032822

About the Book

Made up of 23 of the most horrifying, hilarious, mind-blowing, stomach-churning tales readers will ever encounter, "Haunted" is Palahniuk at his finest--which means his most extreme and his most provocative.

Read from the Book

Guinea Pigs This was supposed to be a writers'' retreat. It was supposed to be safe. An isolated writers'' colony, where we could work, run by an old, old, dying man named Whittier, until it wasn''t. And we were supposed to write poetry. Pretty poetry. This crowd of us, his gifted students, locked away from the ordinary world for three months. And we called each other the "Matchmaker." And the "Missing Link." Or "Mother Nature." Silly labels. Free-association names. The same way--when you were little--you invented names for the plants and animals in your world. You called peonies--sticky with nectar and crawling with ants--the "ant flower." You called collies: Lassie Dogs. But even now, the same way you still call someone "that man with one leg." Or, "you know, the black girl . . ." We called each other: The "Earl of Slander." Or "Sister Vigilante." The names we earned, based on our stories. The names we gave each other, based on our life instead of our family: "Lady Baglady." "Agent Tattletale." Names based on our sins instead of our jobs: "Saint Gut-Free." And the "Duke of Vandals." Based on our faults and crimes. The opposite of superhero names. Silly names for real people. As if you cut open a rag doll and found inside: Real intestines, real lungs, a beating heart, blood. A lot of hot, sticky blood. And we were supposed to write short stories. Funny shor
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From the Publisher

Haunted is a novel made up of twenty-three horrifying, hilarious, and stomach-churning stories. They’re told by people who have answered an ad for a writer’s retreat and unwittingly joined a “Survivor”-like scenario where the host withholds heat, power, and food. As the storytellers grow more desperate, their tales become more extreme, and they ruthlessly plot to make themselves the hero of the reality show that will surely be made from their plight. This is one of the most disturbing and outrageous books you’ll ever read, one that could only come from the mind of Chuck Palahniuk.

About the Author

Chuck Palahniuk’s six novels are the bestselling Diary, Choke, Lullaby, Fight Club--which was made into a film by director David Fincher--Survivor, and Invisible Monsters. He is also the author of a profile of Portland, Fugitives and Refugees, and the nonfiction collection Stranger Than Fiction. He lives in the Pacific Northwest.

Editorial Reviews

“Reading a Palahniuk novel is like getting zipped inside a boxer’s heavy bag while the author goes to work on you, pounding you until there is nothing left but a big bag of bones and blood and pain.” — The Miami Herald “To Palahniuk’s credit, there is something here to appall almost every sensibility. The author has a singular knack for coming up with inventive new ways to shock and degrade.” — The New York Post “Frequently entertaining [and] often appalling. . . . There are paragraphs here—entire pages, in fact—that are as disgusting as anything I’ve ever read. Truly vivid and harrowing (and often quite funny).” — Minneapolis Star Tribune “Summer reading for people who like their lit doused in bodily fluids.. . . Haunted has an anarchic sensibility that hurdles over the top.”— Time Out New York “Chuck Palahniuk is one of the most intriguing writers of our time. [ Haunted ] is a blend of stories that are among the most horrifying, stomach-churning and mind-blowing tales ever encountered.” — Tucson Citizen “Chuck Palahniuk’s rightful place is among literary giants. He combines the masculinity of Ernest Hemingway, the satirical bent of Juvenal and the attitude of Lenny Bruce.” — Greensboro News & Record “To Palahniuk’s credit, there is something here to appall almost every sensibility. The author has a singular knack for
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