Adult · Books · Favorites · Fiction · Middle Grade · Young Adult

Top Ten Tuesday: Books with Fall Covers/Themes

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday (hosted by The Broke and the Bookish) is another fun one: Ten Books with Fall Covers/Themes. Since I am obsessed with all things Halloween at the moment, all I can say in response to this week’s theme is YAY.

Don’t worry, there is nothing pertaining to pumpkin spice anything on this list.

Top Ten Books with Fall Covers/Themes

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman – Cemeteries are one of my favorite places to visit this time of year.

To Kill a Mockingburd by Harper Lee – I confess that I dislike this book, but the cover of this particular version feels very Fall-y to me with with colors and the tree.

We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackon – Creepy family and a black cat. Perfect for a Halloween read!

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling – The colors on this one reminds me of the leaves changing from green to orange to brown. (Obviously, the themes of the series itself are perfectly suited for Fall reading.)

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving – I feel like this one is pretty self-explanatory.

The Books of Elsewhere series by Jaqueline West – The series is an appropriate one as most of it takes place during Fall and around Halloween. Pus, magic, talking cats, witches, people trapped in paintings…

The Cresswell Plot by Eliza Wass – I actually know nothing about this book, but I’ve seen it pop up on the blogosphere and the cover is appropriate.

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs – I love the creepy covers on these books.

Dracula by Bram Stoker – There’s no such thing as October without vampires.

The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield – This one is a cozy, gothic-mystery to curl up with in the evenings.

Book Reviews · Books · Fiction · Middle Grade · Mystery

Book Review: The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier

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My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Orphans Molly and Pip have been through some rough times. When they show up at the strange Windsor manor they are hopeful that their lives are about to get easier, but instead they only get weirder. Neither the house nor the family are what they seem. The family is pale and sickly, there’s a giant tree coming out of the house, and there’s a man roaming the halls at night. Molly can’t figure out exactly what’s going on, but she knows that if she can’t figure it out soon she and her brother will be the next to fall victim to the sinister ways of the Night Gardener. 

I really enjoyed this book. I definitely would have been creeped out by this one when I was a kid. It felt like something that belonged on the pages of Grimm’s or Poe’s tales.

Molly and Pip were good protagonists. Neither of them were the “hero” type or the “chosen one,” which I appreciated. Despite the young ages of the two, Molly and Pip struggled with some very adult problems (poverty, losing their parents, disability, etc.) and, as a result, interjected some real wisdom into the story.

The tree and the night gardener were spooky and weird. I liked the way the way the “monsters” and the house were all tied together.

Overall, this one gets a thumbs up from me. The story is good, the characters are great, and it was a fun read. The only potential problem a young reader might have with this is understanding the Irish dialect.

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That’s one book down for the Halloween read-a-thon. On to the next one!

Books · Fiction · Middle Grade · Mystery

It’s Halloween Read-a-thon Time!

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Lauren @ Wonderless Reviews is back with another Halloween read-a-thon. As I wasn’t active in the blog world during this time last year, you can rest assured that I am partaking this year.

There are multiple challenges to try, but unfortunately I won’t have the time to complete all of them. (You know, there’s that whole full-time job thing. *eyeroll*) I’m going to try my best to do at least a couple of them, just for fun.

Coincidentally, the book I am currently reading fits the bill for the following category:

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The Night Gardener by Jonathan Auxier

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Are you doing any Halloween reading challenges this year? 

Books · Middle Grade

Halloween Prep, pt. 1

Keeping in the theme of all things Halloween, I’m trying to squeeze a few Halloween-ish reads into my repertoire this month. I’m still keeping it on the light side as to not overwhelm my brain at the moment, but that’s okay. I’m still finding plenty of spooky reads that fall in line with the theme of the holiday.

What I’m Currently Reading:

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This one has been on my shelf for a while now, waiting for a rainy day. It’s a quick read, as it’s technically a “children’s” book, but it has kept me entertained. There’s an old, creepy house; a family with lots of secrets; and a mystery man who roams the house at night while everyone is asleep.

Have I ever mentioned how much I love dark children’s literature? I wish there had been more of it around when I was a kid.

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Speaking of dark and spooky things, I’ve been getting the house ready for Halloween. Here’s a sneak peak:

I made these creepy Victorian people candle holders this past weekend. They aren’t perfect yet, but I think they turned out pretty good for a first try.

Witch’s station.

Blogging · Books · Fiction · Middle Grade

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

Hello there. I feel like I haven’t been posting as much lately and for that I feel a tad guilty. I wish I could say that the reason is because I’ve been busy doing [insert awesome thing], but unfortunately it’s been due to my mental health. I’ve finally reached a breaking point and have started online therapy sessions. I was trying so hard to convince myself that I could just pull out of this funk on my own, but that is not the case. I feel like shit both mentally and physically and I have a very hard time focusing, even on things I enjoy. Hence the reason I’ve been bit slow on my reading updates and posts lately.

I’ve still been reading, but it hasn’t been anything super difficult or new. This weekend I re-read a couple of the Elsewhere books by Jacqueline West. They’re middle grade, but they highly entertaining and quirky. I first discovered them a couple of years ago and periodically re-read them when I need something “easy” to entertain me.

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I’m not going to lie, part of my brain wants me to feel like I’m failing or that I’m lame for having to resort to reading “children’s” literature because I can’t keep my shit together long enough to stay focused on an adult novel. But I don’t really care anymore. I’ve just come to accept the fact that this is the way things are right now and that I need to practice self-care, even if that means that my blog posts will suffer a little.

I don’t plan on going anywhere, but I just wanted to explain why my posts/comments have been fewer. Hopefully things will start to turn back around soon now that I have enlisted help.

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What are you reading at the moment? 

Books · Favorites · Fiction · Middle Grade

Top Ten Tuesday: Books From the 90s

Today’s Top Ten Tuesday (hosted by The Broke and The Bookish) is a throwback freebie. Because you can never have too much of a good thing, I would like to pay homage to some of my favorite books that I read in the 90s. (Keep in mind that I was a youngin’ in the 90s and that my tastes weren’t quite as refined as they are now.)

*Straps on platform shoes* Ready? Here we go.

Top Ten Books From the 90s

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling – As one of my favorite book series of all time, obviously this one is going to be at the top of the list.

Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews – This one came out several years prior to the 90s, but I didn’t discover it until sometime in middle school. A big old mansion, mean grandmother, kids locked in the attic, brother-sister incest. This one is totally appropriate for kids of all ages. 😛

The Face on the Milk Carton by Caroline B. Cooney – This one was another favorite in middle school. The made-for-tv movie wasn’t quite as good though.

The Prom Queen (Fear Street)  and The Halloween Party (Fear Street) by R.L. Stine – I was a big fan of the Fear Street books around 5-6th grade. I’m pretty sure I read the entire series. These are just a couple of the ones I still remember reading.

Kristy’s Great Idea (Babysitter’s Club) by Ann M. Martin – Because what girl in the 90s didn’t want to be part of the babysitter’s club!?

Wayside School is Falling Down by Louis Sachar – Cute and funny. I would still recommend these to kids today.

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett – Such a classic. I still love this one.

The Stinky Cheese Man by Jon Scieszka – Goofy spins on classic fairy tales. This one always made me chuckle.

Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl – Chocolate. Oompa Loompas. Enough said.

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What were some of your favorite books that you read in the 90s? 

 

Adult · Books · Favorites · Fiction · Middle Grade · Young Adult

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Reads of 2017 (So Far) 

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Happy Tuesday! This week’s theme for Top Ten Tuesday (hosted by The Broke and the Bookish) is Favorite Reads of 2017. It feels a little weird filling this out already because I don’t feel like I’ve read all that much yet, but I’ll give it a shot anyway…

  1. A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas
  2. A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas
  3. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
  4. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (re-read)
  5. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
  6. The Prisoner of Heaven by Carlos Ruiz Zafon (re-read)
  7. Uprooted by Naomi Novik
  8. Stars by Colleen Oakes
  9. Some Kind of Happiness by Claire Legrande
  10. Rebecca by Daphne DuMaurier (currently re-reading)