The Landlady by Roald Dahl has haunted me for over half my life.
I first read these thirteen pages of creepiness way back in 2004 for year 8 English, and I still remember the double whammy of horror it hit me with. First wham: crazy taxidermist lady poisons attractive young men so she can keep them forever in her home. Second wham: Roald Dahl writes stuff for grown ups?
I wasn’t sure if between now and year 8 English I’d augmented the gruesomeness of it in my head, distorted it out of all proportion, made it darker, made it grosser, but I can safely say I hadn’t.
The Landlady is still terrfiying.
And the more I think about it, the more I realise most of Roald Dahl’s stories are – at least a little bit.