• Olivia Velasquez

Celebrating Halloween Month with a Creepy Classic - "Psycho"

If you don’t spend the whole month of October watching scary movies and reading thrilling books, you’re doing it wrong. One of the most well-known horror scenes of all time is from Alfred Hitchcock’s 1960 adaptation of “Psycho.” If you don’t know which scene in specific, it’s the one the features a woman showering and from behind the curtain, viewers see a silhouette approaching the shower with a butcher knife in hand. This iconic scene remains relevant, even 60 years after the film’s release. 

The film was a wild success and got several sequels and reboots, and even a prequel television show, “Bates Motel,” featuring Freddie Highmore and Vera Farmiga.  However, many don’t know that the film, and its many sequels and adaptations, was based off a novel of the same name. 

“Psycho” by Robert Bloch was originally released in 1959 and was published by Simon and Schuster. The novel is 185 pages of murderous drama, and its audiobook is around five and a half hours long. 

The book revolves around the main character, Norman Bates. Norman is a middle-aged man who runs a motel, Bates Motel, with his mother. The two live in a house just feet from the motel. His mother is extremely close with Norman and tends to take up all of his free time. Running the motel and caring for his mother are the only things Norman does, making him extremely frustrated. His problems only intensify when he finds his newest motel guest murdered in her room. 

This story in general is such a classic. Bloch provides the reader with a thrilling plot, an unreliable main character, and some seriously unexpected twists in this story. Throughout the plot, this book has an eerie setting that perfectly suits the characters, their motivations, and their stories. Over sixty years have passed since “Psycho” released, but it remains just as timeless as it is thrilling.

The novel is incredibly short, less than 200 pages, and is a simple read. That being said, I would highly suggest this book for someone who is just getting started in reading horror and thriller novels, or even just reading in general. This is a fantastic way to get in the spooky mood this Halloween! 

Robert Bloch was an author from Wisconsin, specializing in crime, horror, and science fiction. He was a protégé of H.P. Lovecraft and worked closely with him for many years. Bloch wrote upwards of 30 novels and hundreds of essays, with much of his work being adapted for film or television.

“Psycho” is available as a print book, eBook, and an audiobook. These can be found at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Audible. 

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