Hello, October. On Sunday, September 30th, I held my very first live show. Due to technical difficulties, I had to do the show later than I expected. It was a bit of a learning experience, really. I thought the broadcast had started at one point, started talking, and then realized I wasn’t actually live yet. So I got up to get some water, during which time I actually did go live. You can see me get up to get up at the very beginning and then repeat myself a couple times because I wasn’t sure if what I was saying got recorded or not. Anyway, I’m sure I’ll improve with time. I promise that for the next show, I’ll have my shit together and not only announce the date/time of the show a week in advance, but actually show up to do it when I say I’m going to do it.
Let’s move on to this month’s theme and to be read list for this month, shall we? Since Halloween falls at the end of the month, I thought I’d read some books that sound dark and/or creepy. Keep in mind though, I made this month’s selections with some very limited information in some cases and some of the books I’ve picked might not be as dark or creepy as I think they are.
I have eight books on my list for this month. Four are physical books and four are audiobooks. Most fit into either the young adult or middle grade categories. Virtually all of these books are fantasy/paranormal genre wise. And to be clear, I define paranormal as follows: real (or “our”) world setting with creatures or beings that don’t really exist, e.g. vampires, ghosts, or witches. Normally I would say that my goal is to read at least four of these books. I am, however, behind in my reading challenge because I kind of fell off the reading boat in the last few months. So I’m hoping that I can work towards catching up this month. Fortunately, there’s a 24-hour read-a-thon on the 13th – I probably won’t be spending all 24 hours reading, but I’m going to make a point of putting other things aside and spending as much time reading that day as possible.
- Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
This is the first in the Vampire Academy series. I’ve actually read this book once before (in 2009, I believe), so this will be a re-read for me. My reaction to this book the first time around was sort of neutral: I didn’t love it, but I didn’t hate it either. It was the sort of book I didn’t feel like I could write a review about because I wasn’t sure what to say. I wasn’t sure if I was going to continue with the series, to be honest. But I’ve read some reviews by people whose tastes are usually pretty similar to mine who indicated that some of the later books in the series are much better. So I thought I’d give the book a second chance. It centers around two best friends – one a vampire princess, the other a member of a class of vampires who protect vampire royalty – who attend (surprise of all surprises) a school called the Vampire Academy.
- The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff
I don’t know much about this one except that it’s about a boy who’s a replacement – or changeling – who’s trying to fit in.
- The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
The only Neil Gaiman book I’ve ever read was Coraline. Since I really enjoyed it, I’ve been meaning to read more. You may remember that I had this on my TBR list for January but didn’t get around to it. It’s the story of a boy who flees to a graveyard after his family’s murder and is raised by its inhabitants.
- The Sandman: Volume 1 Preludes and Nocturnes by Neil Gaiman
Yes, another book by Neil Gaiman. This one is a graphic novel. I don’t really know much about this one either other than that it involves dream and nightmares.
- Carnival of Souls by Melissa Marr
From what I understand, this is about a society that has a ruling class and a lower, oppressed class. The only way to get out of the lower class and into the elite is to participate in a deadly competition. Kind of sounds like it might have some similarities to The Hunger Games and Battle Royal, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. On a side note, this is one of my audiobooks and it’s read by James Marsters. If you’re unfamiliar, Marsters acting credits include Spike on Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel, as well as Captain John Hart on Torchwood.
- A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
This is about a monster that visits a boy and tells him stories.
- Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
An art student in Prague runs errands for creatures with both animal and human characteristics.
- The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson
I’ve had this audiobook for ages, but it didn’t occur to me to include it this month until I watched the Elizziebooks video about Halloween reads. This is a retelling of Jack the Ripper told in modern day London.
So what do you think of my picks? Any you think I should prioritize over others? Did I get the creepiness factor wrong for any of them? What are you reading this month?