Dictionary of Torture


Non-Fiction - Historical
160 Pages
Reviewed on 06/11/2019
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Kim Anisi for Readers' Favorite

Did you ever wonder how many different ways there are to torture a human being? Then Dictionary of Torture by Nigette M. Spikes might just be the right book for you. Or maybe you need some inspiration? No, not for real torture! For creative writing, of course! Torture has been around since human beings existed, and people’s creativity seemed to have no end when it came to coming up with ways to make someone suffer – some ways include blood, some ways were invented to leave no visible traces, or traces that could be hidden under clothing. This book includes hundreds of different torture methods from ancient to modern times, explains how they were used, and also refers to the various names one and the same method can be referred to.

Many writers worry about what people might think if they ever saw their Google history. That’s one of the reasons why I picked up Dictionary of Torture by Nigette M. Spikes. After all, it’s one volume full of “delightful” information for authors who lack the imagination to come up with really cruel things to do to their characters (even George R.R. Martin was inspired by medieval torture!). I found one method in the book that I might use for a subplot in a novel. It’s gruesome but fascinating – so is the whole book. I never thought that I’d actually read a book with items listed in alphabetical order from A to Z without skipping pages. But this one was really enjoyable though I feel it might be inappropriate to use this word for this kind of content! Anyway, it’s a good read, plenty of information to be found, and a great resource for writers.

Patricia Schied

This book is astounding! I had no idea that there were so many varied ways to hurt another human being. The research is amazing. Ms. Spikes has surpassed any other research book in this genre. I thought I had already known this kind of history, but she has shown me that the brutality of humans goes much farther than I knew. This is a fantastic research tool for any writer!