Tag: cult books

What is a Cult Book

Posted April 1, 2011 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Listology / 0 Comments

Recently I watched a show about Cult books, yet I still don’t really understand the concept of Cult followings. So I thought I would do some research and this blog post on the topic.

A broad strokes definition would be: “A cult following is a term used to refer to a group of fans who are highly dedicated to a specific area of pop culture.” But it is much deeper than this and it’s a fine line between Cult and Mainstream. Normally a cult follower is passionate and devoted to their subject, but not always for positive reasons. Film Director Ed Wood has a cult following, not because they enjoy his movies, but because they consider them so bad that they become funny and curiously fascinating. Generally, Cult followings normally involve books, movies, etc that originally are not very successful but grow in popularity at a later date (eg. Firefly).

It seems that everyone has a different definition of what would make a cult book, while some may include best sellers like The Lord of the Rings, others would consider these as mainstream. But one thing that seems to be consistent is the fact that a cult book is a book that we share a special bond with, it grips our imagination and you never want to let go of it. I would love to know how you would define a cult book and what your top five cult books would be.

My Top Five

1. Frankenstein
2. Slaughterhouse-Five
3. Catch-22
4. Brave New World
5. Foucault’s Pendulum