Thursday, October 30, 2014

HAPPY HALLOWEEN! Spooky and Thrilling Reads

It's Halloween tomorrow, and you know what that means: it's time for candy, jack-o-lanterns and the local costume parties in which little girls are all dressed as Elsa from Disney's Frozen. I myself am spending the day speaking to a fourth grade class about writing, after which I will excuse myself to a Halloween festival and dress up like a 1940s sailor-girl. Because I can. And because it's fun. 

To celebrate this delightfully ghoulish and spooktacular day, here are my picks for Halloween-worthy books this year: 

Asylum, by Madeleine Roux
I'm currently reading this spine-tingling but entertaining YA novel. Sixteen year old Dan Crawford is going to a college prep program in what happens to be - surprise, surprise - an old mental asylum, known for its creepy staircases, dusty offices and detailed accounts of patient lobotomies. I like how this novel actually includes photographs of the chilling objects and pictures that Dan and his friends find as they explore the asylum. Quite clever. 

Fire and Ash, by Jonathan Maberry
Because zombies are always a good idea when it comes to Mr. Mayberry's well done and skillfully crafted YA novels about the post-apocalyptic world of Benny Imura. This is the fourth installment of the series, and although I'm only a couple of chapters in, I'm already loving it. If you're a fan of post-apocalyptic tales, zombies or The Walking Dead, by Robert Kirkman, you'll thoroughly enjoy this one. 

Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn 
Put aside the fact that Nick Dunn and Amy Elliot Dunn are the two most despicable human beings on the face of the planet next to Hitler (perhaps I'm being a bit overdramatic...?), and Gone Girl is a mind-bending thriller about a wife gone missing. It's a good book for Halloween, but I can honestly say that I felt neither sympathy nor kindness for any of the characters in the book - not one. I wanted them all to go down. Nick especially. He was a jerk, an immature boy pretending to be a man. Oh, and did I mention that I calculated the F-bomb was used at least 450 times in the novel? Just an observation I'm putting out there for all of you. 

The Zombie Survival Guide, by Max Brooks 

Can we please talk about how this guide is the quintessential how-to guide for preppers? The epitome of quirky facts for survival lovers? Written by Max Brooks, the amazing author of World War Z, this survival guide is actually full of great information. Take the undead out of it and you could actually use it as a legitimate manual, I feel. It covers the basics, and, in the event that zombies do come knocking on your door this Halloween...well, you'll know exactly what to do. Mind passing me that baseball bat? 

Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley 
Put aside the fact that I list this book in my Halloween reads list EVERY SINGLE YEAR. Even put aside the fact that I think Mary Shelley was one of the most groundbreaking female authors of the early 19th century. Frankenstein is simply a magnificent read, well-crafted, extremely dramatic, and more of a poignant love story than a horror novel. Kudos to Mary for being a visionary way back when women weren't considered "real" authors. She's one of my heroes! 

Happy Halloween!! 

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Get fictional - it's fun! Thanks for stopping by, and I hope to see you again soon!