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The Most Terrifying Book I've Ever Read

I like to read, as mentioned previously. You can get some interesting and unique experiences from books. Sometimes, however, I find a book that's too unique. The results can be fascinating and repulsive and horrifying all at once. This happened with the most recent book I read. The book is crazy. Not weird, but frothing-at-the-mouth-with-rabid-satire insane.

I'm talking about American Psycho.

Adequately describing everything about this book that scares me would take a much longer blog than this one. American Psycho is a terrifying fever dream of hedonism, debauchery, and madness. "Messed up" does not even approach the level of adequacy for describing this book.

The story is about a guy named Patrick Bateman. He's an impressive guy. Bateman is a wealthy Wall Street trader, good with the ladies, physically perfect, well-liked and has everything he could ever want. There is literally nothing difficult in his life. Patrick Bateman has it all.

However, he's also wasteful, a slave to consumerism, misogynistic (hates women), vain, without real friends and the worst human being imaginable. His life is empty. He bounces from one meaningless purchase to another. The guy is so caught up in "living the life" that he forgot to make a life worth living.

Does that make sense? Patrick Bateman's life is so good that he has become desensitized to happiness.

Bateman has money and possessions and women, but it means nothing to him. He's constantly bored. His stuff is useless. There is one thing that entertains him, though, one thing that still gives a kick. Killing people. Brutally.

I'll spare you the descriptions of his kills. American Psycho contains violence on a level I never even imagined. Seriously. Dead Space, Gears of War, 100 Bullets, Kill Bill, Sin City... these can't even hold a candle to American Psycho in terms of gore.

 The worst part is that Patrick Bateman kills people for the sheer hell of it. It entertains him. Watching others suffer and die in agony is fun. He is so rich and so bored of his life that the only thing that still gives him a buzz is killing.

That's horrifying.

The violence is scary enough by itself, but Patrick Bateman is even more terrifying because he is so plausible. I've felt that same sense of boredom before, the overwhelming urge to do something even when you have possessions. We've all felt it.

Bateman won. He got everything. And yet... it's not enough. He hates his possession but tries to milk happiness from them with an obsessive desperation. Despite having everything, Patrick Bateman is miserable.

That's messed up. Makes you wonder what would happen to us if we got to live as well as Bateman.

American Psycho is a book like no other. The anti-consumerist message is interesting, but many people will be unable to stomach the gore. I cannot emphasize enough how violent this book is. Read it if you dare.

Also, there's apparently an American Psycho movie with Christian Bale. Has anyone here seen it? I haven't. Have you all read the book? If so, what do you think? If not, would you read this?

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