readathon is about to begin! Thanks to Michelle Miller at Seasons of Reading, the pumpkin perfect excuse to read something scary is at hand.
Of course, you don't have to make all of your book choices in the horror/suspense/thriller,etc but it is fun to do so. I decided to be a little smarter with my TBR as my tendency for these challenges is to pick four books and wind up finishing only three of them by the time it's over.
So, why not just pick three books, then? Well, why not-sure, I might read something extra before the end of the month that suits this challenge to a skeleton T(trying to be punny,sorry!) but for now, this sinister trio of page turning terrors should do nicely:
HALLOWEEN PARTY MURDER: This triple dose of seasonal cozy mystery stories has Leslie Meier getting the party started with the title tale that has her sleuthing heroine Lucy Stone on the haunted house scene.
Her new neighbors have set this scare fest up and due to a misunderstanding, Lucy is more than eager to get as many folks as possible to attend the horrifying housewarming event. However, when one of the holiday volunteers becomes an all too real victim, fun time is over for Lucy and all concerned.
Following that fearsome story is Lee Hollis' entry, Death of a Party Monster, where restaurant chef Hayley Powell is happy to attend a costume party with friends and neighbors are dressed up like movie monsters such as Chucky and Freddy Krueger.
Yet when the high school music teacher shows up as Pennywise, the local police chief reveals his fear of clowns. It's no laughing matter, especially when that Stephen King costume proves to be the literal death of that teacher and Hayley is the only one on hand to face the music there.
To round things up is Barbara Ross with Scared Off, as her niece Paige has a sleepover with her gal pals that quickly turns into a wild party with beer toting boys. As her aunt Julia Snowden heads over to stop the wild rumpus, the rowdy teens are frightened away by a ghost. Only trouble is, that ghost resembles Mrs. Zelisko, a nearby neighbor who is supposed to check on the girls and hasn't been seen all night!
I was lucky enough to win an early copy of this book(signed by Barbara Ross!) and saved it for this particular occasion. Being familiar with Meier's Lucy Stone books and having visited Ross' Maine Clambake Mysteries over the summer, I feel very thrilled to dive in here. Lee Hollis is new to me but I love the notion of a Halloween party with film fiend costumes so all in all, this set of Halloween flavored treats promises to be a page turning party indeed:
WE SOLD OUR SOULS: This take on musical hell from Grady Hendrix focuses on a heavy metal band known as Durt Wurk whose lead singer Terry Hunt sold out his group(and namely, lead guitar Kris Pulaski) to gain fame and glory for himself alone.
Decades later, Kris is stuck in a dead end job and finds that her former friend did make an actual deal with the devil that truly dooms her and the rest of Durt Wurk, not to mention the massive crowds of fans following Terry and his new band Koffin on their farewell tour.
To save her own soul, along with numerous others, Kris takes up her guitar once again to hit the road and call out Terry before he truly unleashes hell on earth.
Having read several of Hendrix's works in ebook form(including his latest, The Final Girls Support Group, which is beyond awesome!), I'm happy to report that my copy of WSOS is a physical one. While his quick paced writing is fun to enjoy in any format, having a Grady Hendrix novel on my bookshelf is the best sinister season treat for me:
CATHERINE HOUSE: In this debut novel from Elisabeth Thomas, our leading lady is Ines, who agrees to spend three years of her life at this exclusive academic setting of the title.
Those who have completed a full course of independent study at this institute have gone on to bigger and better positions in the world, making Ines appear to be fortunate indeed.
However, once she arrives, Ines notices an intense atmosphere that draws many of her fellow students into being part of a series of secret experiments being held in the basement. Experiments that may be more dangerous than curiosity was to the cat....
I've heard a lot about this book and the whole premise has a great modern Gothic vibe to it, plus it's said to be a good example of the genre known as dark academia(such as Donna Tartt's The Secret History). Smart,scary and secretive,all makes for quite the combo to create a good terror tale, if you ask me:
What's more terrifying than any of these books,however, is the ultimate threat to free speech and that monster's name is censorship.
With so much misinformation swirling about these days and local school board meetings becoming battlegrounds for chaos seekers to spew their illogical wrath upon, protecting the freedom to read is more important than ever.
Banned Books Week started yesterday and ends this upcoming Saturday. Please take a moment to check out the ALA website as well as the official BBW21 site for more information. Knowledge is turning into a rare commodity right now and the way to halt that downward progression is through books, especially those that speak to communities whose concerns are overlooked far too often by the mainstream media:
As for FrightFall, it begins on Friday, October 1 and lasts until All Hallow's Eve(there is a link in the first paragraph of this post to sign up and learn more about it). While trick or treating might be put on hold again this year, due to the sadly ongoing health crisis in our midst, we can still have some holiday fun with a good book and a costume friendly film or two: