King, Alan & Vayda, Jamie – The Rats Were Bad That Year

Website for Jamie Vayda


The Rats Were Bad That Year

Are you terrified of rats? Would you like to be terrified of rats? Then I cannot recommend this book highly enough. Granted, the circumstances of this rat infestation are not likely to match your current living situation, but if they do, good luck ever sleeping again. Anyway, this is the story of a brief period of Alan’s life when he was a kid. His father was working on buying a house, but some problem with the finances was tying things up, so his only choice was to rent a house next to his grandmother. Reports are varied on who lived there before him, but their time living there was a lovely learning experience for Alan about rats. It’s hard to say if the reality of the rats (their tearing through cereal boxes and anything in the cabinets, leaving turds all over the place) was more terrifying than the idea of them (eating children that slept in cribs), but let’s just agree that they’re both pretty awful. Things eventually build to a killing spree, as you probably figured, and no details are spared of the carnage. I should point out that there are no word balloons, as the text is a story from Alan and the art is illustrations from Jamie, which only serves to create the tiniest bit of distance between the two needed to make the whole thing genuinely terrifying. Oh, and the capper (pun very much intended) is also guaranteed to make you think. And, quite possibly, feel a little bit bad for the rats. And all this for a measly $2!


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