Readersforum's Blog

October 27, 2012

Death Turns The Page: Seven Notable Literary Kills

By Jon Korn

Most of the time proper literature deals with death, it is presented as a beautiful thing: a knight’s brave sacrifice, a lover’s romantic suicide, an old person’s fond farewell. But this spooktacular time of year pulled my focus towards another kind of literary death. You know, those dark and dastardly acts that run the bloodthirsty gamut from spine-tingling to gut-churning.

The murders.

In the spirit of the season, I’ve assembled what I believe to be seven of the most memorable and disturbing acts of homicide in literature. Think of it as a “Best Kills Supercut,” but, like, for the Western cannon.

Obviously, this list is incomplete – despite my best efforts I have yet to read all of the books, ever. I chose the moments that stuck out to me as especially gruesome, shocking, or haunting. So be warned, there is a lot of disturbing imagery to follow – because when highbrow types go dark, they go all the way. (And, necessarily, this article contains SPOILERS. If you don’t want to know what happens to Piggy at the end of Lord Of The Flies, STOP READING NOW.)

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