- Hardcover: 336 pages
- Publisher: Quirk Books (May 17, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9781594748622
- ISBN-13: 978-1594748622
- ASIN: 1594748624
- Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1 x 9.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 242 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #437,605 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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My Best Friend's Exorcism: A Novel Hardcover – May 17, 2016
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"The Farmer's Son" by John Connell
"A fascinating portrait of a single sensibility, a born noticer, someone on whom nothing is lost, observing birth and death, the landscape, and his own heritage." ―Colm Tóibín, author of "Brooklyn" Learn more
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“National treasure Grady Hendrix follows his classic account of a haunted IKEA-like furniture showroom, Horrorstor (2014), with a nostalgia-soaked ghost story, My Best Friend’s Exorcism.”—The Wall Street Journal
“Take The Exorcist, add some hair spray and wine coolers, and enroll it in high school in 1988 — that’ll give you My Best Friend’s Exorcism...Campy. Heartfelt. Horrifying.”—Minnesota Public Radio
“Clever, heartfelt, and get-under-your-skin unnerving.”—Fangoria
“A touching story of high school friendship and, well, demonic possession.”—Bloody Disgusting
“Terrific...Sharply written...[My Best Friend’s Exorcism] makes a convincing case for [Hendrix’s] powers as a sharp observer of human behavior, filtered through a fun genre conceit that doesn’t skimp on the spooky—or the bodily fluids.”—The A.V. Club
“Think Mean Girls with demonic possession, set in 1988 Charleston. It’s funny, it’s heart-wrenching, it’s even a little spiritual, in a very strange way.”—Southern Living magazine
“This book packs all the magic of a summer horror flick.”—Bustle
“The rare exorcism book that will make you cry, My Best Friend’s Exorcism is both a truly scary tale and a loving tribute to high school friendship.”—Hypable
“If you’re looking for a good summer book, something for the beach or the back porch that won’t insult your intelligence, one that’s tense and sometimes scary and sometimes funny, with characters you may even come to like and admire as they come of age, keep My Best Friend’s Exorcism in mind.”—SFFWorld
“[Hendrix proves his] own black-magic mettle by conjuring up an era where ill-informed paranoia (and just plain ding-dongness) turned some of the quietest corners of America into fear factories...Too bad Satan never actually did show up back then. He woulda loved it.”—Wired.com
“A book every horror fan should know.”—Dread Central
“Satirical, intense and surprisingly heartwarming, My Best Friend’s Exorcism is, like, totally the perfect summer reading choice—if you don’t mind some gore.”—Sunday Gazette-Mail
“Smart, sassy and satanic.”—Rue Morgue
“Hendrix is one of the finest new genre voices we have in literature.”—Film School Rejects
“If you see me in the wild and I'm reading a book that was written by Grady Hendrix, interrupt me at your own peril.”—Sarah Gailey, Hugo-Award winning author of Magic for Liars
“Hendrix's fusion of teen angst, '80s pop culture, and the power of true friendship is a treat.”—Kirkus
Praise for We Sold Our Souls:
An NPR Pop Culture Happy Hour Pick
An io9 2018 Fall Preview Pick
“Kickass, horrifying, and smart as hell. It certainly earns my two horns up.”—Dread Central
“Wild and fun, genuinely terrifying in places, and also somehow heartfelt.”—Tor.com
“A fast-paced ride, firmly rooted in the pulp horror tradition…Hendrix’s darkest novel yet will leave readers begging for an encore.”—Booklist, starred review
Praise for Paperbacks from Hell:
“Pure, demented delight.”—The New York Times Book Review
“Paperbacks from Hell is as funny as it is engaging.”—The Washington Post
“The book is a true appreciation of the genre.”—Los Angeles Times
“Paperbacks from Hell is as wild as its source material.”—The A.V. Club
“Just thumbing through these pages will bring back your youth— and terrify you all over again.”—Newsday
Praise for Horrorstor:
“Horrorstör delivers a crisp terror-tale...[and] Hendrix strikes a nice balance between comedy and horror.”—The Washington Post
“Disarming.”—The Wall Street Journal
“Hendrix conjures up some wonderfully gruesome imagery.”—Nerdist
“An inventive, hilarious haunted house tale.”—Bustle
“If you’ve ever been frustrated trying to put together furniture from IKEA, you’ll get a laugh out of Hendrix’s spoof mystery.”—New York Post
About the Author
Grady Hendrix is a novelist and screenwriter based in New York City. His novels include Horrorstör, named one of the best books of 2014 by National Public Radio, and My Best Friend’s Exorcism, for which the Wall Street Journal dubbed him “a national treasure.” The Bram Stoker Award-winning Paperbacks from Hell, his survey of outrageous horror novels of the 1970s and 80s, was called “pure, demented delight” by the New York Times Book Review. He’s contributed to Playboy, The Village Voice, and Variety.
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Recommended for: young adult and older readers, people who grew up during the 1980s, horror-comedy fans, fans of unusual friendship stories
The cover is appropriate because the novel takes place in the 1980s. While it does deal with satanic possession, it's really about the normal ups-and-downs of teenage friendship. While I'm a middle-aged man, I felt a great connection with and sympathy for these two teenage, female protagonists. There are a few stock characters, but they seem reminiscent of the stock characters you find in '80s horror movies (the arrogant rich girl, the brainy girl, the jock with only one thing on his mind, etc.). Indeed, these characters only highlight the two girls at the center of the story.
While this story is mostly dramatic horror, there are a few moments of real, shudder-inducing horror. I highly recommend "My Best Friend's Exorcism."
My Best Friend's Exorcism by Grady Hendrix is the story of Abby and Gretchen, best friends since elementary school who decide one night to experiment with LSD. Abby doesn't trip but Gretchen does experience something, running out into the woods and getting lost until morning. When found, the friendship begins to change as Gretchen becomes less stable...and eventually more malevolent as she begins turning everyone against Abby.
The novel takes place in Charleston, SC, beginning in 1982 but mostly during the fall of 1988. Because it is a period piece, Hendrix does his best to remind you that you're in the 80's. The only thing I have against the book is that Hendrix is very heavy handed in constantly reminding the reader, "IT'S THE 80'S, GET IT?" For instance, Gretchen's dad isn't just described as holding a book but holding The Cardinal of the Kremlin by Tom Clancy. Also, all the chapter headings are the titles of 80's billboard hits: We Got the Beat, Like a Prayer, New Sensation, etc. There's probably about one 80's pop culture reference every 2-3 pages.
Still, the point of the novel is to reproduce the style and plot of a typical 80's B-movie horror (PG-13/R-rated), and that it does well. The book cover is even designed to look like a well-worn VHS box from the video store. So, check this out for a light read.