Thursday’s Things: The October Country Edition

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Image: blablover5

I named this month’s Thursday’s Things after Ray Bradbury’s short story collection “The October Country” because it sums up all the weird and spooky bookish links I discovered during my wanderings around the internet.

R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril XI

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Image: Abigail Larson

R.I.P. XI takes place from September 1st, 2016 through October 31st, 2016.

I’m a day late in signing up for this, and I blame my old day planner and myself for forgetting to write all the important reading events for the year down in my new planner.

There are multiple levels of participation.  I’m only going to give a summary of them here, so for the full details, click on the image above.

Peril the First – Read four books, of any length, from the very broad categories of Mystery, Suspense, Thriller, Gothic, Horror, and/or Dark Fantasy.

Peril the Second – Read two books that fit the R.I.P. categories.

Peril the Third – Read one book.

Peril of the Short Story – Read one or more short stories.

Peril of the Screen – Watch one or more movies.

Peril in Play – Play one or more video, electronic, board or table top games.

I’ll be doing Peril the First and, since I’ll also be participating in Castle Macabre’s Gothic September and Season of the Witch, Peril of the Short Story.  Though I’m sure to watch several movies in October that would count towards Peril of the Screen, I won’t be writing any movie reviews.  However, I might list the ones I watch in my Monday’s Minutes posts, especially if they are based on books.

Are you participating in R.I.P XI?  Which Peril(s) are you going to do?

Horror October Fortnight: Read-Along Wrap-Up

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It’s Halloween, which means it’s the final day of Horror October Fortnight and the read-along for Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury.  Since I was unable to do Thursday’s Quotables yesterday, I won’t be doing a review.  Instead, this wrap-up will be about all the wonderful quotes I came across.

Something Wicked

Out in the world, not much happened.  But here in the special night, a land bricked with paper and leather, anything might happen, always did.

This line made me think that somehow the carnival would be let loose from some, possibly evil and most definitely mysterious, book.  I’m glad it didn’t, however, since I think that might have ruined libraries for many readers.

Still most comfortable in the library nights, in out of the rain of people.

I love this line not just because it’s about Mr. Halloway’s love of libraries, but because of the beautiful truth of libraries being a place to get away from “the rain of people.”

By the pricking of my thumbs,/ Something wicked this way comes.

I love the cleverness of using a line, spoken by the 2nd Witch, in Shakespeare’s “Macbeth” for the title of the book.  If you’re curious to know where exactly in the play this line is, it’s Act 4, Scene 1, Page 2, Line 44.  The beauty of it was destroyed in the modern text, so please, stick to the original version.

Death doesn’t exist.  It never did, it never will.  But we’ve drawn so many pictures of it, so many years, trying to pin it down, comprehend it, we’ve got to thinking of it as an entity, strangely alive and greedy.  All it is, however, is a stopped watch, a loss, an end, a darkness.  Nothing.  And the carnival wisely knows we’re more afraid of Nothing than we are of Something.  You can fight Something.  But…Nothing?  Where do you hit it?

This sums up the entire story, and is exactly why this book is so scary.  There are so many more amazing lines throughout the book, but they require a lot of context, and are wonderful more for the choice of highly descriptive words and the modern style in which they’re written than what is being said.

Happy Halloween!

Tuesday’s Tunes and Things #1

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I’ve decided to start this new feature called “Tuesday’s Tunes and Things”.  It will be a collection of literary links I’ve come across and a playlist of music I listen to while reading.  I’m thinking it will be a bimonthly or monthly post, instead of weekly.  Since it’s Horror October Fortnight, this one is Halloween themed.

While I’ve been reading Ray Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes for the read-along, I’ve been listening to this playlist.  Be warned: this book and music combo might keep you awake for fear of nightmares about Mr. Dark and the Dust Witch.  For whatever idiotic reason, the album “Carnival of Lost Souls” by Nox Arcana isn’t on Spotify, so it’s not on my playlist, but you can find it here.


The 50 Scariest Short Stories of All Time (Flavorwire) – I’ve read several of these, and judging from that, I can say this is a great list.  What I love about it is the links to the stories so you have quick access to scaring yourself silly.

Literary Witches Quiz –  Test your knowledge of witches in literature.

9 Creepy Books to Read Just in Time for Halloween – Unfortunately I won’t have time to read any of these this October, since I’m trying to finish the three books I’m already reading by Halloween.  I’m adding a few of these to my list of books to read next October though.

5 Great Halloween Reads for Kids (Nerdist) – These are also great for those who prefer to keep their Halloween more fun than freaky.

21 Literary-Inspired Pumpkins Every Bookworm will Adore and 18 Literary Pumpkins for a Bookish Halloween – Sadly, I don’t have any artistic ability when it comes to carving pumpkins.  Otherwise, I would definitely make several of these.

3 Ghostly Good Reads – Kim, over at Bookmark to Blog, has convinced me to add Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake and The Diviners by Libba Bray to my TBR for next year.

Nightmare Magazine – I learned about this Horror and Dark Fantasy magazine from a review over at Book Punks.

Review: Chimera Books One, Two, and Three

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Chimera1 Chimera2 Chimera3

  • Author: Phil Gomm
  • Publisher: Troubador
  • ISBN: 9781784628116, 9781784628123, 9781784628130

Though the Chimera books are Fantasy, there’s enough creepy and sinister characters and events to put them in the Children’s Horror category as well, which is why I’m reviewing them for Horror October Fortnight, hosted by Oh, The Books!

Kyp Finnegan, finds himself in Chimera, where all lost things end up, including children.  If you’re looking for a comparison, it’s The Adventures of Alice in Wonderland as a nightmare.  Everything is out to steal his Elsewhere Light (what will allow him to get back home), or kill him out of hatred for all “blood and bones”, and he never knows who he can trust (mostly no one).  His primary quest is to return home, but that becomes his last goal as he comes across other lost children and finds out exactly what Madame Chartreuse is up to.  Each book ends with a cliff hanger, but at approximately 100 pages each, you could easily go directly on to the next book to satisfy your need to know what happens next.  Let me tell you, it’s a roller coaster ride with very short breathers between the mishaps and scrapes Kyp finds himself running into.  One thing is for sure, I will never look at dolls the same way again *shivers*.

I highly recommend these books for all ages, especially for lovers of Dark Fantasy, and those who prefer “Cosy Horror”.  I can’t wait for the next book(s) in the series, which will have Kyp starting a new quest.

 

Horror October Fortnight!

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I just found out about Horror October Fortnight from Oh, The Books!  I’m a day late, but since I love October so much, I’ll be participating.  I’m also participating in the Something Wicked This Way Comes read-along, so I’m going to combine the two by doing a post about the playlist I’m listening to while I read.  I’ll be doing another playlist post containing my favorite Halloween tunes, and I’ll be doing a review of The Nightingale Bones by Ariel Swan, which I started reading during the read-a-thon.  I may also dedicate a post to the horror movies I watch every year.  In addition to my own posts, I’ll be wandering around the other participants’ blogs and joining in on some of their activities.

For today, I give you my Top 5 Fave Horror/Paranormal Books:

  • It by Stephen King – This book scared me so much, I had to put it down for a month before I could continue.
  • Guilty Pleasures by Laurell K. Hamilton – The first in the Anita Blake Vampire Hunter series.  This is my Horror/Paranormal brain candy.  Hamilton has yet to end the series, and I’m nowhere near caught up.  I look forward to having more Anita Blake books to read for a very long time.
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker – An essential read for anyone who loves vampires.
  • Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice – Another essential read for vampire lovers.  I was depressed after I finished the last of the Vampire Chronicles.  I’m planning on re-reading them all soon.
  • The Complete Tales and Poems of Edgar Allen Poe – There’s nothing I love more than to read Poe during October.  There’s no way I could possibly name a favorite story of his.