The Birds by Daphne du Maurier
A fantastic suspense story. If you’ve only seen the Hitchcock film, make sure you try the book as it’s surprisingly different. You could also try this 1953 radio adaptation from Lux. This radio theatre was clearly on the ball as the story only came out the year before.
The Food of the Gods and How it Came to Earth by H. G. Wells
Among other animals, this book has massive chickens in it.
“Charawk, chawk, chawk, chawk, chawk, chawk!” shrieked the hindmost hen, hit smartly by the watering-can Mr. Skelmersdale had thrown, and fluttered wildly over Mrs. Glue’s cottage and so into the doctor’s field, while the rest of those Gargantuan birds pursued the pullet, in possession of the child across the vicarage lawn.
What’s not to love? How will society react when faced with something new, scary and… big?
Mysterious Island by Jules Verne
This book also has other giant animals, but the big birds here are also prehistoric. They go by the catchy name of phororhacos. Of course, they still battle with humans. There are two films based on this book bearing the same title (it’s probably safest to go with the 1961 movie).
This book is definitely worth a read. It’s a classic novel and it will certainly boost the vocabulary of most, albeit with words that others will find confusing.
The Crow by James O’Barr
Yes, it’s the book that the film came from. You know, the one with Brandon Lee. The book is a rare example of a comic book which looks best in black and white. It’s horribly upsetting but that doesn’t stop readers from re-visiting it again and again. It doesn’t get old.
This book certainly jump-started my teenage goth phase and I had a lot of posters on the wall. Love, loss and justice… those classic themes. I should also point out that I’m actually not a fan of comic books and graphic novels, so this did very well to get in my good books (so to speak).