7 Books Guaranteed to Make You Feel Uncomfortable ...


Novels are there, essentially, to make you feel something.

They'll make you fall in love, break your heart, make you laugh and much more.

But then there are the novels you almost have to look away from, like you would a gory scene in a film.

Of course, that doesn't help because the words are already wriggling in your head.

I really admire authors who write like this - I think it's an extraordinary skill to make a reader feel like that just through words alone.

So, if you're looking for an uncomfortable but powerful read, try one of these.

1. Eat My Heart out by Zoe Pilger

Eat My Heart out by Zoe Pilger

This is actually very tame compared to the other books on this list.

Set in present-day London, it's a frank, very honest look at the life of a young woman unsure what she wants and who she is.

The majority of the book is fine but there are a few scenes - horribly inappropriate one-night stands and animal murders - that left me feeling like I needed to close the book and walk away for a while.2

2. Tampa by Alissa Nutting

Tampa by Alissa Nutting

You've probably seen the cover of this one - google it if not;

graphic, but an example of just how powerful a good jacket design can be!

It tells the story of a female teacher with a penchant for pre-pubescent boys and her affair with a student at her school.3

It doesn't spare any detail, but the most off-putting thing is the protagonist's total inability to see that she's doing anything wrong - and the way we, as a society, treat an attractive, young woman who is also a paedophile.

3. The End of Alice by a M Homes

The End of Alice by a M Homes

I found this when I was much younger (too young) in the classics section of a Waterstones in an airport and happily took it with me as a beach read.

It is truly horrendous - easily the most disturbing book I have ever read.

The protagonist is in prison and the story of why he's there unfurls gradually - A M Homes reveals his monstrous nature so slowly that the ending, when we find out what exactly it is that he did, is even more shocking.2

It's a testament to her great writing that the reader feels sorry for him, and then is left feeling horribly guilty for that by the end.

Guts by Chuck Palahnuik
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