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Little Willow [userpic]

I Know What You Did Last Summer by Lois Duncan

October 28th, 2008 (02:41 pm)
nostalgic

Current Mood: nostalgic
Current Song: If I Ever Lose My Faith in You by Sting

When I say, "I Know What You Did Last Summer," what comes to mind first, the book or the film? For me, it's the unforgettably creepy book. I read quite a few Lois Duncan books when I was a kid, and I Know What You Did Last Summer was always and will always be my favorite.

Julie, a high school senior, is anxious about the usual things: her grades, graduation, college, life. In the back of her mind, she's also always thinking about something that happened the previous summer - a terrible hit-and-run accident that killed a little boy, the specifics of which only she and three of her friends know about - or so they thought. When Julie receives an unsigned note that reads, "I know what you did last summer," she freaks out. Memories of that horrible night come rushing back to her, and she isn't sure that she can keep what happened a secret anymore.  Her friends have different ideas, though. Some have moved on with their lives; the guys have gone on to college. Some of them don't want to confess. Each of the four old friends has secrets of his or her own - secrets they'll do anything to protect.

I Know What You Did Last Summer by Lois Duncan was first released in 1973 and made into a feature film 24 years later, in 1997. Whether or not you liked the movie, I urge you to read the book. They changed many things for the movie, including character names, the setting, the killer's identity, the number of people killed, even the color of Julie's hair, so you can enjoy the book and film separately...or you may like one version more than the other.

What's your favorite urban legend? What's your favorite scary movie? Let me know in the comments below!

Related Booklist: Teen Mystery and Horror

Comments

Posted by: lisachellman (lisachellman)
Posted at: October 28th, 2008 10:19 pm (UTC)

It's the book for me, too. Boy, oh boy, did it creep me out! Nearly 20 years later, I just remember the inciting incident and the climax, though. More than I can say about most single-time reads from that long ago, I guess!

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: October 28th, 2008 10:35 pm (UTC)

It's such a good story, isn't it?

Posted by: Lauren (begliocchi)
Posted at: October 28th, 2008 11:01 pm (UTC)

I loved the book. The movie irked me with how "dumbed down" it was and how it played to a very specific age and culture audience. IMO.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: October 28th, 2008 11:05 pm (UTC)
Poppy Montgomery

Ditto.

Posted by: aprilhenry (aprilhenry)
Posted at: October 28th, 2008 11:12 pm (UTC)

My agent sold the film rights - and Lois Duncan did not like what they did to it.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: October 28th, 2008 11:14 pm (UTC)

Poor Lois. I remember reading various articles/soundbites in which she spoke of her dismay.

Posted by: aprilhenry (aprilhenry)
Posted at: October 28th, 2008 11:17 pm (UTC)

If I remember correctly, part of it had to do with her daughter who was murdered. They had bought an option for the second film, and there was no way to get out of it.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: October 28th, 2008 11:21 pm (UTC)

Yikes. I remember librarians worried for me reading that book since it was the real story.

Posted by: aprilhenry (aprilhenry)
Posted at: October 28th, 2008 11:27 pm (UTC)

I'm not sure I'm parsing that sentence right, but she wrote the book long before her daughter was killed, and it's not based on that.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: October 29th, 2008 04:26 am (UTC)

I should have said the title - Who Killed My Daughter? - instead of the phrase "that book." Sorry!

Posted by: aprilhenry (aprilhenry)
Posted at: October 29th, 2008 01:54 pm (UTC)

Now that makes a lot more sense. And I haven't even finished my coffee.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: October 29th, 2008 03:17 pm (UTC)

Sorry for being vague before!

Posted by: A Deserving Porcupine (rockinlibrarian)
Posted at: October 29th, 2008 05:44 pm (UTC)

Lois Duncan was one of my favorite writers in middle school! But I preferred her more supernatural stories, like "Stranger With My Face." Still, I roll my eyes at the "I Know What You Did..." movie... honestly, that was kind of a classic YA suspense novel there you just turned into a joke, thanks.

Off topic, my "I am not spam, I am a real person" code words in the box below are "Central reality." That's just crying out to be turned into a science fiction novel there, says I.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: October 29th, 2008 11:03 pm (UTC)

I read her supernatural stories as well, and though I like paranormal/fantasy plots, in her case, I preferred her realistic murder mysteries.

Use the title!

Posted by: Sarah (maidofawesome)
Posted at: November 4th, 2008 08:03 pm (UTC)
ibiza is pretty

I had a serious Lois Duncan phase when I was a teen. Her books were so much better than the films that were based on them. The one about the girl who was a witch reeeeally freaked me out.

Posted by: Little Willow (slayground)
Posted at: November 5th, 2008 03:52 am (UTC)

I concur! I loved the novel Gallows Hill. I've seen the movie based on it (I've Been Waiting for You) multiple times because it's such a cool cast, even if the story isn't correct. ;-)

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