There are mistakes — simple errors with simpler fixes — and then there are mistakes … the kind of catastrophic blunders that defy explanation.
This wild exclusive report is very much the latter kind of mistake, despite retail conglomerate Target seemingly waving it off as the former.
To wit, a Texas woman reached out to The Western Journal to share what happened when she tried to purchase a book from Target.
After receiving a notification that her book had been delivered on Friday, Rachel Krichevsky rushed home to open up the Target package containing her new romance novel — or so she thought.
“As soon as I got home, I opened the package to find that not only was the wrong book delivered but to my repugnance, it turned out to be a book categorized as ‘extreme horror’ containing content such as, but not limited to: Pedophilia, sexual assault, incest, torture, kidnapping, physical abuse and animal cruelty all described in graphic detail each involving young children,” Krichevsky told The Western Journal via email.
For the unfamiliar, “extreme horror” is a very niche genre of literature categorized by extremely graphic and detailed descriptions (leaving things to the imagination is not this genre’s strong suit) of whatever horror was happening in a given moment.
As to the book Krichevsky received? It was “Playground” by Aron Beauregard.
Despite the fun and family-friendly sounding name of this extreme horror novel, the cover (which The Western Journal won’t link to, due to its disturbing nature) makes it pretty clear this is a deeply disturbing and macabre tale.
The cover of the book, ostensibly the very first thing that Krichevsky saw upon opening her package, depicts a young girl at the top of a playground slide that has saw blades protruding out of it. Strewn all across the slide and ground are blood, guts and a dismembered foot.
“I immediately made a report through the Target app stating the concern over the mistake that was made,” Krichevksy said. “I didn’t feel as though this was a mistake to take lightly. After submitting my details digitally, I called customer service and was connected to a representative who did not understand the severity of the complaint.
“For 15 minutes we went back and forth over how to return and exchange the book. When I asked if I could escalate the situation, she then told me she makes a note of all concerns, and those concerns are then submitted in a ticket therefore there is no need to escalate the call.”
The Target representative eventually nixed a potential exchange and opted to just send the correct book to Krichevsky — what some might construe as solid customer service under normal circumstances.
But to Krichevsky, these were far from normal circumstances, given the extreme nature of what she had just been sent.
“After relaying multiple times within the call, I was not asking how to return the book, I was concerned about the content that ended up in my package and would never think of donating this writing,” she said. “She then stated that it would be noted and to have a great rest of my day.
“Not once did she ask what explicit content I received was called, therefore the complaint will go nowhere.”
Krichevsky’s description of “Playground” as explicit might be underselling it.
The Western Journal reviewed excerpts of the book and ultimately agreed with Krichevsky’s assessment that “Playground” is not fit for consumption by anyone.
(For the morbidly curious, a quick plot synopsis: An evil old lady invites three poor families to have their children “test out” new playground equipment — equipment inundated with deadly additions, like the slide on the cover of the book. There are a number of subplots and such that aren’t fit to repeat in print, but rest assured, a lot of people die, a lot of people are sexually assaulted, and it’s all done in the most descriptively gruesome way possible.)
As an example of how depraved this book is, there is an infamous “page 47” of the book that graphically describes how the old lady antagonist killed her own mother via sexual assault — and it’s described in horrid detail.
And this book was sent to a mother whose child could’ve easily found and opened up this story.
“For Target to have ‘accidentally’ sent this material is of detrimental concern as anyone of all ages can order books through the Target app,” Krichevsky lamented.
This is where things take an especially strange turn, however: Per Krichevsky, Target doesn’t even offer “Playground” for sale on its website. Indeed, a search of “Playground” or “Aron Beauregard” on the Target site doesn’t yield a single “extreme horror” offering.
“Are they mistakenly putting this book in other orders?” asked Krichevsky. “I could have easily been a youth reader receiving this content and unknowingly read a ‘scary book about children on a playground.’”
Krichevsky also further blasted the literary filth by noting that the warnings the book offers grossly undersell its contents.
“There are two warnings written before starting the book,” Krichevsky explained. “First it says, ‘This book contains scenes and subject matter that are disgusting and disturbing; easily offended people are not the intended audience.’
“As well as a paragraph after the acknowledgments page that states, ‘This book contains scenes of graphic violence involving children.’ Giving absolutely no specific detail to the extent of what readers of all ages are actually getting into. Absolutely zero emphasis on children being sexually assaulted, tortured, and put in incestual situations.
“With great concern for the innocence of children and the increasingly growing culture of allowing pedophilia to be normal, I feel this must be stopped, using this book and situation as a prime example,” Krichevsky wrote.
The Western Journal has reached out to Target for a response and will update the story accordingly should they respond.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.