Twisted Stories

All Things Books / Review

About Kitchen Curse,
Written by Intan Paramaditha, and was originally published in Singapore Unbound,
Mar 09, 2020

Ten years ago, I read Eka Kurniawan’s “The Otter Amulet” (Jimat Sero), a story about a former bully victim who uses an amulet to protect himself from harm, an outsider trying to fit in. It was written for a horror story anthology, a tribute to Indonesia’s most prolific horror writer Abdullah Harahap, that Eka co-wrote with Ugoran Prasad and myself. I was struck, perhaps with envy, by the way he presents horror that creeps in silently. I was not shocked by the violent scenes but rather the perverse moments revealing the uncanny ways in which the protagonist sees and understands events. It is a story about the horror of looking. In Eka Kurniawan’s universe, the gaze can be disturbing, exposing the darker side of what it means to be human.

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