Sunday, December 24, 2023

Nine novels featuring parasocial relationships

Lisa Zhuang is an intern at Electric Literature. She holds a BA in Creative Writing from Emory University and currently resides in mid-Missouri.

At Electric Lit Zhuang tagged nine novels featuring characters who are in love with people who don't know they even exist. One title on the list:
Misery by Stephen King

As perhaps expected of a Stephen King novel, Misery delves into the more violent, deluded potentials of parasocial relationships. Starring Paul Sheldon, a best-selling romance novelist, Misery kicks off with Paul crashing his car while drunk driving to LA. He is saved by Annie Wilkes, a former nurse who is also Paul’s biggest fan. Rather than take him to the hospital, Annie takes Paul back to her home, where she holds him hostage and demands to read his unreleased work. In the ensuing months, Paul writes to satisfy Annie’s whims and is punished when he fails to appease her.
Read about another entry on the list.

Miseryis among Clare Whitfield's seven literary murderers hiding behind masks, Max Seeck's six most haunting settings in crime fiction, Rula Lenska's six favorite booksJake Kerridge's top ten Stephen King booksJohn Niven's ten best writers in novelsEmerald Fennell's top ten villainesses in literature, and Lesley Glaister’s top ten books about incarceration.

--Marshal Zeringue