What was this '70s or early '80s horror novel featuring spiders?
March 28, 2013 10:47 PM   Subscribe

Somewhere between '80 and '82, I read this book that featured spiders... [arachnophobes: do not click!]

...bursting and swarming out of people after they had been bitten and made hosts for spider eggs. A man and his son were a central part of the story, at least at the beginning. I think the first infection was from a walk on a beach, maybe involving that father and son specifically.

The title might have actually been "Spiders", but the books with that title that come up in searches aren't the one I'm looking for.

I'm pretty sure it's not Richard Lewis's "Spiders", because I don't remember such emphasis on Great Britain, I think it used "arachnid" rather than "insect", and the creature behaviour doesn't sound the same.

More certain it's not "Webs" by Scott Baker, as the spiders there are large, and I think the ones I'm remembering are no more than tarantula-sized and they were in swarms.

Ring any bells?
posted by batmonkey to Media & Arts (7 answers total)
The spider behaviour at least sounds a lot like the movie "Arachnophobia", but it wasn't released until 1990, and I haven't been able to find that it was based on a novel.
posted by Cheese Monster at 3:36 AM on March 29, 2013

John Wyndham (Day of the Triffids) wrote a book about spiders. Don't recollect the story though. Or title.

Or preview: "Web",
posted by Rabarberofficer at 6:27 AM on March 29, 2013

Response by poster: Definitely not "Web" by John Wyndham.

I did the Arachnophobia search, too, but didn't find anything, either.
posted by batmonkey at 7:59 AM on March 29, 2013

Britain + animals attacking + 1980s should = John Halkin's delightfully terrible crap, but I can't find a book from him about spiders. Is it possible that they were in fact deadly caterpillars or electric jellyfish but your brain has changed them into spiders because deadly caterpillars make no fucking sense at all?
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:03 AM on March 29, 2013

Oh wait. You mean that there shouldn't be an emphasis on Britain. Definitely not Halkin then.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:04 AM on March 29, 2013

Best answer: I'm pretty sure I read this. The spiders were some sort of mutated breed and when they bit the victim it injected thousands of spider eggs into the victim's blood stream? And then the eggs later hatched and burst out through the host body?
I remember a boy definitely gets bitten and filled with spider eggs and dies a horrible death.

I read so many bad horror books around that time...

I think it might have been _Came A Spider_ by Edward Levy. It looks like it was published in 1978. Here is the link I found to some of the text.
posted by Brody's chum at 12:30 PM on March 29, 2013

Response by poster: YES! Thank you, Brody's chum! That's exactly it. Also glad I wasn't the only one who read all of that terrible horror as I made my way through the genre.

Ah, and it was a desert, not a beach. Noted.
posted by batmonkey at 2:35 PM on March 29, 2013

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