I like my horror reads to be absolutely chilling and of the mind-fuck variety, so I'd say very scary for any title here.
It - Stephen King : Beyond how inherently scary a concept a boggart is, and one written by King at that, what terrified me in this book is the truth of how helpless children are against adults, their power and their belief in other adults. It's always that scene where Bev is running from her not-dad, and no adult even stopping, because it rings so creepily real.
Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov : I don't get why anyone would mistake this one for a romance. Ever. That's the ickiest, most compelling and therefore scariest, unreliable narrator of literature. Real horror.
Misery - Stephen King : This one gave me palpitations. It gets violent and there are lasting consequences.
Ponies - Kij Johnson : Maybe horror is not the genre one would put it, but this little does cause horror. I never read it again, but I still feel like crying when I remember it.
Wow did I struggle with this book. I had never read anything by Nabokov and this book had many positive reviews, but it did nothing for me. It was a challenge to follow the storyline and the many random asides did not click for me. I have a hard time with poetry, and the four cantos that set up the main part of the story did not stick with me. I think reading this as an ebook negatively impacted the experience because I didn't have the freedom to easily turn back and forth to reference the poem while reading through the notes. A big disappointment for me.
(Original Review, 1992-02-10)
I can speak and write English pretty well, and I am completely lacking in Nabokov's talent for prose. I do, however, wonder whether the fact that English was his fourth or fifth language may have enabled him to approach writing in a different way. He seems to be very aware of structural features, and I wonder if this skill came out of his ability to speak numerous languages? I'd have to say that's undoubtedly true: the more languages one knows the more one becomes aware of how each one works and, often, greater facility in manipulating them to one's uses.
If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.