Top Five Tuesday: Books About a Death

Welcome back to another edition of Top 5 Tuesday! It was originally created by Shanah at Bionic Book Worm but now has its home at the lovely Meeghan Reads. This week’s topic is books that revolve around a death! Ooooo…sounds dramatic. With this topic, I tried to mostly stay away from just using straight-up murder mystery books (because, duh, a death is the whole damn premise of the genre) in order to give the list a little more variety. So, here are five books that I really enjoyed whose plot rests largely on a significant death.

The Push – Ashley Audrain

To explain how this book is about a death would be a spoiler so I won’t. In truth, The Push is about so much more than that – the relationships between mothers and daughters, mental health, and societal conventions of motherhood, just to name a few things. However, it’s the death of a particular character that sets off a series of events that massively changes the life of the narrator. The book is about a woman named Blythe who struggles to connect with her daughter Violet after she’s born. As Violet grows, Blythe begins to worry there might be something…twisted and wrong with her child.

Sadie – Courtney Summers

Oh, Sadie. I feel like I haven’t spoken about this book in a while and since it’s a) fantastic and b) perfectly suited for this week’s topic, let’s rectify that right now. It’s just so darn heartbreaking and I don’t think I’ve really read many books like it. The death relevant here is that of Mattie, little sister to our 19-year-old protagonist, Sadie. Mattie meant everything to Sadie and with the two having grown up in a terrible home environment, Sadie felt responsible for keeping her sister safe. So, following her murder, Sadie sets out, determined to track down Mattie’s killer and get revenge. It’s a dark, raw, and expertly told story that won’t be for everyone but is well worth a read.

Rebecca – Daphne du Maurier

While Rebecca is about a wedding, which was last week’s topic, it’s more importantly about the death of the titular character. The novel centers around an unnamed protagonist who after meeting wealthy widow Maxim de Winter in Monte Carlo marries and returns with him to his famous English estate, Manderley. However, she soon finds that the presence of Maxim’s glamorous former wife, Rebecca, lingers over everything, aided by Manderley’s hostile housekeeper, Mrs Danvers, who refuses to allow her mistress’s precious memory to be papered over. Our protagonist begins to question whether she will ever measure up to the legendary first Mrs de Winter. But the real question is, is Rebecca truly gone?

The Secret History – Donna Tartt

The Secret History is one of those books that if you were to try and explain what it was about, you would probably say it’s about a death. A murder to be exact, committed by a group of university classics students against one of their friends to cover up another murder that took place during an ancient Roman ritual. In truth, it’s far more complicated and deals with a myriad of themes and ideas. It’s about group dynamics, the power of guilt and secrets, social class, the nature of beauty, fate vs choice, and so much more. The writing is dark, intense, intelligent, and wonderfully addictive. If you’re curious about the book that kicked off the dark academia genre, this is the one to read.

Vicious – V. E. Schwab

Another great read that I haven’t chatted about for a bit. So, technically there are a bunch of deaths in Vicious and that’s because the whole premise is people dying, being brought back, and developing special X-men type abilities as a result. Yet, these people don’t stay dead so the death I’m actually referring to is that of Angie, a university classmate of our leads Victor and Eli (& Eli’s girlfriend). While Victor and Eli have a friendship/rivalry before this event, it’s Angie’s death that puts their whole Professor X-Magneto conflict into full motion. The book follows the two men years later as Victor tries to get revenge on Eli for putting him in prison and Eli seeks to kill Victor as part of his plan to hunt down all ExtraOrdinary humans.


What are some of your favourite books that centre around the death of a particular character?

Let’s Talk: 5 Bookish Things That Make Me Cringe

I love books. I really, really do. But there are certain things about them that on occasion make me cringe in a really big way. Nothing’s perfect after all. Now, you may well be wondering where I got the idea for this post. Okay, you’re probably not, but I’m going to tell you anyway. The reason for the rant that you’re about to skim is THIS abomination:

Yes, this. It seems that there has come a time when I don’t only need to cry about printed stickers, but TIKTOK printed stickers. Excuse me while I go scream into a void. Printed stickers aside, the whole publisher obsession with BookTok begs some further discussion and since I’ve already brought it up, let’s start this list there.

TikTok Sensation Labelling

TikTok is big, I get it. However, I’d be lying if I said a little part of my soul didn’t wither and die every time I see a book cover with something along the lines of ‘As Seen on TikTok’ on it or download an e-book listed as ‘[TITLE]: THE TIKTOK SENSATION’. Maybe I’m showing my age here, but it feels so cringey to me. Social media has been used to promote books into popularity for years now and as a member of the online book community myself, I love that. I have no problem with Booktok itself, it’s simply another branch of an already wonderful thing. Yet, as far as I can remember, I can’t think of any other platform being used by publishers in this way. You know, spamming its name all over the place to such a degree that you’d think someone had just invented the new sliced bread. I have to ask, why? It feels like the type of marketing that’ll date book covers within only a few years. Like, hey, remember when Tiktok was new and shiny and publishers kept plastering its name all over everything to sound hip and young? Oh, yeah, that was weird. Weirder still, quite a few of the books that have suddenly become “TikTok sensations”, like It Ends with Us by Colleen Hoover or We Were Liars by E. Lockhart, are backlist books that have already been popular online for several years. It’s not as if it’s showcasing anything revolutionarily different or underrated. If bookstores want to do a table showcasing popular BookTok reads, go for it. But publishers, for the love of all things holy, keep it off the books themselves.

First Person Blurbs

I know this one’s going to be subjective so if I’m all alone on my little hill here, I understand, but the fact is: I don’t like first-person blurbs. There, I said it. They feel cheesy and CRINGEY. I think it might be because the blurb is trying to give the reader a broad overview of the plot but still sound character-focused. This never works for me because (a) it comes off sounding extremely melodramatic in a way that an omniscient narrator blurb ordinarily wouldn’t and (b) the character voice always feels so generic and different from the actual narration of the book’s MC. I believe this trend arose because people started to complain that third-person blurbs were misleading for books written in first-person, but this is super bizarre to me because I always thought it was widely known or accepted that blurbs were a third-person thing. Maybe I’m wrong? Regardless, I’m not a fan and it’s a trend I wish would disappear.

Bad Dirty Talk

Dirty talk in books can be extremely hot, but it can also be very, very bad. There’s nothing like a line of dreadfully written dirty talk to make me want to curl up into a ball of awkwardness and second-hand embarrassment. Like, no. Please, stop. While this is something I more often see in romance reads, there are certainly offender books from other genres, too. I’m sure that everyone has their own standards for what they like and don’t like in this area. All I know is that the minute a character opens their mouth during an intimate scene and says something cringey, I’m done. The mood is ruined. It somehow feels even weirder and more cringe when this dialogue is completely out of sorts with the character’s outside-the-bedroom personality.  A recent example I had of this was The Spanish Love Deception by Elena Armas, in which I found myself dying slightly more inside every time the romantic lead, Aaron, opened his mouth during the first sex scene. It’s times like these that I genuinely feel pain for audiobook narrators.

Male Authors Badly Describing Women (Especially Their Bodies)

I’m confident that everyone is aware of the 1000% cringe level of this entry, especially if you spend time on Twitter or Reddit (do a quick search if you’re in the mood to experience an even blend of humour and horror). I think it’s safe to say that most of us have come across something like this at one point during our reading travels. You’d think authors would learn and yet, clearly not. There are few things that make me cringe harder than a male author’s creepy, awkward, incorrect and/or unnecessary descriptions of female characters – bodies and behaviours. What is it about boobs and butts? Seriously. Why do they constantly need to be pointed out and in the weirdest ways possible? Not to mention the subtle paedophilic undertones that pop up from time to time…yikes. Even my most recent read, Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami, is guilty of this and I wish I could say it was just the once. Unfortunately, I think I’m bound to suffer this particular form of bookish cringe many more times in the future.

Bare Torso Covers

Now, this entry is definitely a romance-only offense. I love romance books but sometimes the cringe factor is high, particularly with cover trends and none more so than the let’s smack some dude’s set of washboard abs right in the centre, that’ll pull in the readers!  I get absolutely nothing from these types of covers. Nada. Zip. No sense of the story, vibe, characters, just the usual feelings of awkwardness, plus the annoyance of knowing there’s no way I’ll ever be able to bring the darn thing on the train without getting weird looks. They feel staged, weird and, of course, cringey. Please try something new, I beg you.


Trust me when I say that this list is far from an exclusive summary of the only bookish things that make me cringe. There’s always that one scene that pops up unexpectedly which makes you want to cover your eyes and not in a good horror book kind of way. Still, you’ve got to take the good with the bad, I suppose.

What bookish things make you cringe?

Top Ten Tuesday: Books on my Autumn 2022 TBR

Happy Tuesday, bookworms. It’s that day of the week again so it’s time for another edition of Top Ten Tuesday (hosted by the lovely Jana @ ThatArtsyReaderGirl). This week we’re talking books on our TBR for the season. As always, I’m Australian so while all you northern hemisphere babies are busy planning your spring reads I am extremely happy to be reunited with my favourite season, Autumn. Because my mood reader self panics at the idea of having to plan 10 books for this list, I’m only doing 8 – shorter and sweeter. Here are the reads on my TBR:

The Atlas Six – Olivie Blake

The re-publish is finally out and, as of last weekend, I have a copy sitting in my house. Woo! I’m excited because I’ve been wanting to read this for ages now but I’m also worried about being disappointed because in that time it’s become extremely hyped. Like, EXTREMELY hyped. On its face, The Atlas Six seems like it should be right up my alley – magic, competition plot, dark academia, grey characters, but there’s always room for things to go wrong. It’s about a group of 6 magicians competing against each other for only 5 spots in a secret society of magical academics. Please, be good, please, be good!


Cleopatra and Frankenstein – Coco Mellors

This is another one of those books that I bought on a sudden whim while perusing the book store. It’s been marketed as being suitable for lovers of Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney which I love, however, I’ve been burnt by these types of recommendations before. But after seeing a few positive reviews from people who actually did like CwF, maybe the suggestion is legit? It’s about a young painter named Cleo who impulsively marries a man named Frank, twenty years her senior. The book looks at how this decision impacts their lives and those of their close friends and family.


All Systems Red (The Murderbot Diaries #1) – Martha Wells

I’ve heard so many positive things about The Murderbot Diaries that I think it’s about time I see for myself what everyone’s talking about. These are sci-fi novellas (eventually progressing to a full-length novel) so they’re fairly quick reads and there’s always something fun about a sarcastic, dysfunctional AI. It’s about a self-aware security droid tasked with protecting a group of humans doing research on a far-off planet. However, Murderbot (as it refers to itself) doesn’t really like humans and would rather just be sitting around watching videos, doing stuff all. Sounds like me. Here’s hoping I find an enjoyable new series.


Jade City (The Green Bone Saga 1#) – Fonda Lee

Okay, yes, mentions of this book on my blog are starting to feel a bit Jack in the box-ish lately so I won’t rehash the blurb for the umpteenth time, but here we are again. I’d really like to get stuck into this series sometime over the next few months. I’ve finally managed to find a copy at the book store (they were all weirdly sold out for a while there – guess everyone else had the same idea as me) so I’m ready to go. I still have no idea if this is going to be something I enjoy as I’ve never really gravitated towards mob-like stories before but I’m really intrigued so I suppose we’ll see.


A Lady for a Duke – Alexis Hall

I only recently heard about A Lady for a Duke and it’s annoying because had I known earlier I would’ve included it in my 2022 anticipated releases list. I had a lot of fun with Alexis Hall’s Boyfriend Material and I’ve been reading a few historical romances lately so the idea of combining the two is exciting. This book sounds so good! It’s about trans lead Viola who after being presumed dead at Waterloo takes the opportunity to finally live as herself. She ends up reconnecting with her best friend, Justin, who hasn’t handled her death well and becomes determined to help him find happiness again. We don’t often see a lot of mainstream romances where trans characters get to take center stage so this is such a nice change. This one will be a very late Autumn read due to the release date (but if anyone wants to send an ARC my way…*wink wink*)


Skyward (Skyward 1#) – Brandon Sanderson (Re-Read)

I received Cytonic, the third book in this series, for Christmas but I haven’t read it yet because I’d really like to do a re-read of the first two books in the series and then make my way through the two novellas set in between books 2 and 3. It seems like a stack at the moment, which is likely why I’ve put it off for months, but I really love this series so I should just get to it already. This will be my third time through Skyward but it’s such a fantastic book that I have no doubt I’ll power through it as I have the first two times. If you haven’t read it and have been thinking about doing so, I 100% recommend going for it!


The Hacienda – by Isabel Cañas

This is the second book on this list that has yet to release but I’m so keen to read The Hacienda that I’m including it anyway. It’s been likened to Mexican Gothic, which I wasn’t a huge fan of, but also Crimson Peak and Rebecca, both of which I did like. Combine that with a great-sounding blurb and I’m hoping for a hit. The story follows Beatriz. After losing everything when the Mexican government is overthrown, she marries the handsome Don Rodolfo Solórzano and moves to his country estate. However, something seems off about the Hacienda and there are rumours about what happened to her husband’s first wife. Desperate for help, Beatriz seeks assistance from a young priest in getting rid of the malevolent presence plaguing the house.


Fence, Vol. 2 – C.S. Pacat & Johanna the Mad

I’m in the mood for something fun and what’s more fun than a comic about silly, competitive boys fencing? I read the first volume in this series ages ago and bought the next two volumes expecting that I’d get around to them shortly after but, as usual, I didn’t. So, let’s change that, shall we? I feel like this will be a good way for me to break up one of the larger and more dense reads on my TBR with a couple of hours of something fluffy. The fifth volume in the series is due out in August this year so perhaps I’ll be all caught up by then.


Let’s see how many of these I get through over the next couple of months. For all I know, I could suddenly have an urge to binge read massive amounts of thrillers and this could get thrown out the window. Hopefully not, but life is full of surprises.

What books are you hoping to read this Autumn/Spring?

Page to Screen: 8 Book Adaptations I’m Looking Forward to in 2022

Book adaptations – sometimes they’re good, sometimes they’re disasters you wish you could permanently erase from your memory. Still, we live in hope that our favourite books will not only make it to the big or the small screen one day but that they’ll be something worthy of the amazing novel they’re created from. While 2021 certainly featured some great ones, 2022 has some promising movies and TV shows on the way. Here are nine of the adaptations currently expected to release this year that I’m most looking forward to seeing:

The Time Traveler’s Wife (TV Limited series, HBO)

Audrey Niffenegger’s Sci-fi romance, The Time Traveler’s Wife, has been one of my favourite books ever since I was in high school. Then again, I haven’t re-read it for years now so here’s hoping that’s still the case. It follows a man named Henry who has a condition called Chrono-Displacement Disorder which causes him to spontaneously time travel to moments within his own timeline – past and future. Because of this, he meets, falls in love with, and eventually marries an artist named Clare. The book details their lives and the impact Henry’s condition has on them. I found the 2009 film somewhat of a letdown so I’m really looking forward to seeing what HBO is able to do with a six-episode limited series in the hands of Steven Moffat, especially since my favourite Doctor Who episode was not only written by him but inspired by this exact novel (It’s The Girl in the Fireplace, in case you were wondering). The series will star Theo James and Rose Leslie, which I’m not sure how I feel about, but I’m keeping an open mind. It’s due to release sometime in the Northern Hemisphere’s Spring.


Conversations with Friends (TV Limited Series, BBC 3/Hulu)

I think you’re all aware just how much I adore Conversations with Friends by Sally Rooney so when I say this is the adaptation I’m most excited for on this list, you won’t be surprised. This book is another one of my favourite standalones and it’s about two friends/exes, Frances and Bobby, who meet a writer named Melissa after one of their spoken poetry shows and start to spend time with her and her quiet, actor husband, Nick. Soon after, Frances begins an affair with Nick which changes her perspective on a lot of things. I absolutely adored the adaptation of Rooney’s second novel, Normal People, and many of the people who were involved in that production have returned to work on CWF so I’m really hopeful the series will be another winner. It’s due to release in the US in May and, like Normal People, will consist of 12 episodes of approx. 30 mins each.


Daisy Jones and the Six (TV Limited Series, Amazon)

I’ve been hearing bits and pieces about this adaptation of Taylor Jenkins Reid’s popular 2019 novel for a while now (ever since Reese Witherspoon’s production company bought the rights), but it seems as though the TV series will finally be released this year. The book is a fictionalised oral history account of the rise and split of a popular band in the 1970s and takes some inspiration from Fleetwood Mac. Production was massively delayed due to Covid but they were finally able to start shooting in September last year, which is exciting! The casting looks super solid too – Riley Keogh will play Daisy and Sam Claflin has been cast as Billy, the band’s lead guitarist, writer and singer. I’m interested to see how the music from the book gets translated into the series and the way the documentary-style storytelling will be approached. I know a lot of people are looking forward to this one so hopefully they aren’t disappointed!


Blonde (Film, Netflix)

I confess, I’ve had this brick-sized book by Joyce Carol Oates sitting on my desk TBR pile for many months now but I’m determined to read it before the adaptation comes out. There’s been a lot of talk about this movie in recent weeks due to the announcement of its US NC-17 rating but I’m super intrigued to see how the movie turns out. It’s a fictionalised and highly edited account of the life of Marilyn Monroe and, at a times, a very dark, violent and ugly one. Then again, Marilyn’s life wasn’t exactly sunshine and daisies. I have no idea if this is going to be something I enjoy, the book or the movie, but there’s just something about Marilyn that draws me in. Ana de Armas will be playing Marilyn and I’ve liked what I’ve seen from her in the past. I’ve heard there were some challenges in navigating her Cuban accent but I really hope she nails the role.


House of the Dragon (TV Series, HBO)

Even after the nonsense that was season 8 of Game of Thrones, I’m still looking forward to this adaptation of Martin’s Fire & Blood. Am I going in with measured expectations? That would be a yes, but we’ll see how things go. It could be awesome, it could be the biggest flop ever. Who knows? This series is set 300 years before the original and deals with the lead-up to the Dance of Dragons – a civil war within the Targaryen house that killed many dragons and severely weakened the Targaryens, contributing to their eventual downfall. I have no idea how much money HBO is throwing at this, it must be a lot considering how many dragons will have to be involved and the scale of the conflicts, so here’s hoping it looks pretty spectacular.


Bridgerton, Season 2 (TV Series, Netflix)

As if this wasn’t going to be included. This is another case of an adaptation where I have the book but just haven’t gotten around to reading it yet (I’m hesitant after my issues with the first book). Gotta love a good guilty pleasure watch. But yay for a diverse heroine and good, old-fashioned enemies-to-lovers tale. The story revolves around Anthony finally deciding to get married and setting his sights on a woman named Edwina. However, her older sister Kate has heard all about Anthony’s rakish ways from Lady Whistledown and wants to keep Edwina as far away from him as possible. But then oopsie, they fall for each other instead. I wasn’t a big fan of Anthony in the first season/book – he’s somewhat of a pratt so fingers crossed this season and Kate can redeem him. Season 2 will release on March 25 and you can bet I’ll be bingeing it.


Where the Crawdads Sing (Film, Netflix)

Another adaptation, another book I haven’t read. I’ve been wanting to read Delia Owen’s Where the Crawdads Sing for a few years now, probably because it was all people could talk about for a while, but never got around to it. Now the movie is coming out in June and I’m feeling the time crunch. This is another one of the projects being produced by Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine company and I’m excited that they’ve cast Daisy Edgar Jones in the lead role because I loved her in Normal People. I’m also expecting some beautiful scenery after what I’ve heard of the environments in the book. The novel is about a girl named Kya who lives in the wilderness as she was abandoned by her family when she was young. Treated as a social outcast, she becomes the prime suspect in a murder when a popular boy from town is found dead.


The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power (TV Series, Amazon)

This is the 2022 adaptation I’m most conflicted about. As some of you may know, I’m not a big fan of Tolkien’s books but I’m completely nuts for Peter Jackson’s film adaptations. So, my dilemma is that while I’m intrigued, I’m still very unsure about how good it will be. Amazon has thrown absolutely enormous sums of money at this first season – legit, $465M was spent – meaning at the very least I have high hopes for the production quality. The story itself is based on Tolkien’s collection of appendices rather than an actual novel, which suggests there will be a lot of jigsaw puzzling and creative license going on to form the narrative. It seems to be dealing with the second age, covering Sauron’s rise and the forging of the Rings of Power. This could prove to be super interesting but I guess we’ll have to wait until September to find out.


Which book adaptations coming out in 2022 are you most excited to see?

Books on My TBR: 500+ Page Books Whose Size Intimidates Me

Spoiler Alert. A lot of the books on this list are going to be fantasy. Why? Because Fantasy authors seem to look at a book and go, ‘You know what? Could be bigger’. So, here we are. This seems like a weird list to compile considering I only recently finished a 700+ page book but what can I say, I never claimed to be consistent in my anxieties.

The Way of Kings (The Stormlight Archive 1#) – Brandon Sanderson

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It hurts me to say so, but I’ve been thinking about reading this book since 2016. That’s right, around five years. The poor thing has rave reviews everywhere you look, a 4.6(!) average Goodreads rating and it’s written by an author I’ve already read and liked things from. But you know what I see when I look at it – that 1007 page count. ONE THOUSAND AND SEVEN. Is this thing a book or a weapon? Perhaps it’s both. I couldn’t possibly hope to try and sum up the blurb for this novel here but the good thing is there are talented reviewers like Melanie (@ Mel To The Any) who are able to do it perfectly for me.


The Priory of the Orange Tree – Samantha Shannon

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I was so keen read Priory once upon a time. Unlike other books on this list, I actually started reading it back in 2019 but after feeling overwhelmed and getting distracted, I put it down again. However, that doesn’t mean it’s given up a spot on my TBR. Every time I see that gorgeous orange cover I feel a mixture of longing and terror. At 830 pages, it’s smaller than The Way of Kings but still a wrist injury waiting to happen. Generally, the book follows four major characters from two kingdoms – the east who worship and ride dragons, and the west who fought a war against them and whose queen must have a daughter to prevent their return. I’ve heard it’s an epic read so here’s hoping I get there.


Dark Age (Red Rising Saga 5#) – Pierce Brown

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Would someone please explain to me why I’m somehow feeling intimidated by a book that is THE FIFTH in a series I have already read all the previous entries from (& one of my favourites, I might add)? Like, what? This makes no sense. Perhaps it’s because I didn’t enjoy book four as much as the first three. Regardless, Dark Age is still sitting on my shelf after goodness knows how long, in all its 750+ page glory. A lot of people have said this is the best book in the saga but I’ve also heard it’s the darkest, bleakest and most violent. Suddenly 750 pages seems a lot longer than it first did.


The Shining – Stephen King

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I considered using King’s monstrously sized The Stand but, in reality, I’ve wanted to read The Shining for longer. You’d think it would be because of the Kubric film adaptation but, unpopular opinion alert, I don’t like it very much. Mostly because nothing is bloody explained properly – it just drops in random things from the book with no context whatsoever. However, with over 650+ pages (varying depending on your edition) to work with, King has the time to weave an intricate plot, outline the history of the Overlook Hotel and create characters with rich backstories. It’s far from the biggest book on this list but still intimidating.


The Eye of the World (The Wheel of Time 1#) – Robert Jordan

Buy The Eye Of The World: Book 1 of the Wheel of Time (Soon to be a major  TV series) Book Online at Low Prices in India | The Eye Of The

I’ve been hiding from my paperback of this book for around 7 years. It’s 804 pages, with tiny print and terrifying. Plus, it’s part of a series of 14 books that all look like this. Can you hear me screaming? If there was ever a time to use the word ‘intimidating’, here it is. And yet, I still want to get there one day. With all the buzz about the TV series lately, I’ve been feeling more inclined to give it a go but it’s hard to take that step and finally do it. This is another book that it’s difficult to provide a brief synopsis for but the series takes inspiration from Tolkien and involves the farm boy/chosen one destined to save the world from a dark entity trope. It starts out with three friends setting off on an adventure after their home is attacked and expands from there.


Jade City (The Green Bone Saga 1#) – Fonda Lee

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The Green Bone saga is another fantasy series I’ve continued to hear amazing things about and Jade City even won the World Fantasy award back in 2018. Jade City is the shortest book on this list at 544 pages but that doesn’t make it “short”. It’s a mafia/godfather-type fantasy set in a world in which magical jade is prized, traded and the control of which is fought for. However, when the introduction of a new drug gives more people the ability to wield it, conflict erupts between rival families Kaul and Ayt. This sounds awesome, even though I don’t usually gravitate towards gang narratives. Then again, I recently got into watching the series Sons of Anarchy so maybe I’ll completely love this.


Recently I’ve been feeling a little more inclined to start one of the larger books on my TBR. It might be because we’re reaching the end of the year and I’ve already hit my 2021 reading goal but it might also be a desire to read something complex and immersive. Whether that voice in the back of my head will win out, we shall see.

What are some of the bigger books on your TBR that you’ve been putting off?

Or, if you’re someone who simply eats doorstopper books for breakfast, what are the favourites you believe to be worth the time and effort?

Spooktober: Characters I’d Want on My Haunted House Investigation Team

Only a few short days left until the end of Spooktober! I can barely believe how quickly this month has gone and yet, here we are. The other day I discovered this really fun post idea on Raya’s Reads, written as part of a Top 10 Tuesday freebie a few years back. It sounded really cute and perfect for one of my October Halloween-themed posts so I thought, why not give it a try? I love the idea of fictional haunted houses, I’d even love to write my own story about one someday. Real-life haunted houses though…not so much. This is why if I ever decided to try my hand at investigating one The Conjuring style, I’d need a great, supportive team! Here are the fictional character’s I’d bring with me if I could choose and the roles they’d likely fill:

The Researcher: Pippa Fitz-Amobi (A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder Series – Holly Jackson)

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Pippa is a research and investigation wizard. Whether it’s internet searches, interviewing people, or piecing things together with the help of a board/journal, Pippa has it covered. She’s also super determined to find answers, whatever they may be or the threats preventing her from doing so. I have no doubt that she would be perfect in discovering the history of our haunted house and its various inhabitants so that we can get to the root of why it’s such a source of paranormal activity.


The Protector: Geralt of Rivia (The Witcher Series – Andrzej Sapkowski)

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Geralt is a witcher which means he’s well versed in all manner of supernatural creatures – demons, monsters, spirits, you name it. Hopefully, this will give us an advantage in understanding what we’re dealing with in our particular haunted house. Even better, he doesn’t scare easily (or at all, really) and is a badass with a sword, which might prove handy. Plus, he can use potions to see in the dark, something that may be useful should we lose power. Basically, you can understand why I want him around to cover my butt when terrifying things start happening.


The Medium: Galaxy ‘Alex’ Stern (Ninth House – Leigh Bardugo)

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The reasoning behind this one is pretty obvious. When investigating a haunted house, I’d definitely want to have someone around who can see and communicate with ghosts (well, that is if it’s a ghostly haunting). That way, we’ll be able to see any ghostly hijinks coming and potentially be able to speak to vengeful spirits. Alex is also a badass and has seen some serious “stuff” in her time so I doubt much would rattle her anymore, making her the perfect party member for such an expedition.


The Record Keeper: Josephine “Jo” March (Little Women – Louisa May Alcott)

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What’s the point of going through all these adventures exploring a haunted house if we don’t have anyone to write about it? Well, Jo March to the rescue! Jo starts out by writing Gothic-style stories and she’s quite a strong, progressive character for her time, so I’d like to think she’d find the idea of exploring a haunted house thrilling – the perfect fodder for a heap of interesting tales. I’d expect her to document the events that befall us in lush detail for others to read about and in a way that makes us all look very brave and dashing, of course.


The Leader: Victor Vale (Vicious – V. E. Schwab)

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I agree with Raya on this one. Every adventuring party needs to have someone who can plan, back up plan, and think on their feet when things hit the fan (with a haunted house, they inevitably will). Victor is smart, calculating, thinks outside the box, and can take his emotions out of the equation, all of which are important in dangerous situations. Also, with his ability to manipulate pain, if any of us happen to get injured by angry ghosts, he’ll get us up and going until we can reach help. He’ll probably be a bit of a harsh leader but I feel confident in his ability to get us through.


The Moral Support: Maybell Parish (Twice Shy – Sarah Hogle)

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In dark and scary situations, it’s always important to have someone with you who’s positive, cheerful, and morally supportive. After all, ghosts and demons can be scary and demoralising! Especially so if our time in the haunted house lasts for several days. Maybell is super sweet and an optimist, despite the sucky things that have happened to her. While she isn’t likely to be the bravest or most physically useful up against the paranormal, she’ll certainly be great for keeping people’s spirits up and helping take our minds off of things during the time between hauntings with her big dreams, bubbly chatter and romantic fantasies.


The Scientist: Chen Kitay (The Poppy War Series – R. F. Kuang)

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Okay, I know Kitay lives in a fantasy world inspired by 20th century China, but hear me out. The boy is a genius, so I have no trouble believing that were he in our modern world and I asked him to study a haunted house using scientific equipment, he would be like: Where do I sign up? Kitay loves a conundrum and while he’s more focused on things like strategy and policy, he’s also great with numbers and nventions, and generally loves exploring theory and knowledge. On this basis, I’m going to say that capturing and studying data to prove to others that a house is haunted and trying to work out ways to un-haunt it would be an exciting challenge for him.


And so concludes the dream team! I’m fairly confident in our chances here. I’m a complete wimp when it comes to scary stuff but I feel as though,with these characters by my side, I could maybe make it through and probably a lot more mentally healthy than the characters in The Haunting of Hill House.

Who would you want by your side when venturing into the depths of a haunted house?

Spooktober: Creepy Book Covers to Haunt Your Nightmares

We’ve all come across books that seem innocuous enough only to find that the inside is far creepier or messed up than we expected. Then there are other books which are just like: screw subtlety, I want to destroy any chance of you having peaceful dreams for the next several months. Well, this post is about the latter type. The scary, the creepy, the weird, and the *laughs nervously* wtf type covers.

NOTHING BUT BLACKENED TEETH – CASSANDRA KHAW: My soul almost left my body the first time I saw this cover. My overactive imagination was sitting there jumping for joy at the inspiration for the terror-filled imaginings it was going to be sending my way. Honestly, though – the lack of eyes, that…mouth, the claw like hands. Nope, nope. NOPE.

I AM LEGEND AND OTHER STORIES – RICHARD MATHESON: I’m not usually bothered by vampire imagery but these bloodsuckers look terrifying, especially skull dude at the front. They’re almost like zombie-vampires. Get those creepy faces away from me. Far away.

SHUTTER – COURTNEY ALAMEDA: I have no idea who’s imagination this cover imagery came from but I can safely say, I never want to be trapped there because jeez. If ghosts are real, please lord may I never discover that they look like this. I think it’s the mouth *shivers*

HOLLOW CITY (MISS PEREGRINE’S PECULIAR CHILDREN 2#) – RANSOM RIGGS: Is it just me or are vintage photos of children often creepy? They’re usually dressed in clothes devoid of any childish joy, mostly unsmiling, and the grainy black and white film gives them such a weirdly sinister feel. It’s all very Children of the Corn.

THINGS HAVE GOTTEN WORSE SINCE WE LAST SPOKE – ERIC LAROCCA: This cover is so weird and eerie looking. I have no idea what’s happening but I keep staring at it, eyes darting back and forth between the blood smeared shoulder and the vortex of head tissue. It’s certainly memorable.

THE OUTSIDER – STEPHEN KING: King has so many horror books that a few of the covers were bound to be scary. Those red eyes on the dark figure keep drilling further and further into me the longer I look at this. I keep imagining it brutally murdering me and then walking off wearing my face. Send help.

THE DOLL COLLECTION – EDITED BY ELLEN DATLOW: An entire book full of short stories about creepy dolls? No, thanks. Better yet, a creepy-ass cover featuring a discarded porcelain doll’s head with eyes I won’t be able to stop seeing for weeks, double no thanks.

WE HAVE ALWAYS LIVED IN THE CASTLE – SHIRLEY JACKSON: This book has long since been re-covered but there’s something about the old school edition that weirds me out. I’m not sure if its the posing, the hair draped/flying, or that single eye, just starting at me through the gap in the fence as though she’s plotting something.

JAWS – PETER BENCHLEY: This cover is similar in design to the movie posters. While I’ve never felt especially put off by them, despite my nervousness about deep water, the visual here hits me differently. I think it might be the black background, It’s almost like a swimmer moving through a deep, dark part of the ocean, not knowing what’s lurking just metres away from them.

MY WIFE JODIE – V. A. RUDYS: It’s all about the smile with this one and the way the face is lit to showcase it. Gives me such predatory vibes despite the seemingly controlling hand above.

IT – STEPHEN KING: Like I said, lots of King horror novels and lots of cover opportunities to scare the pants off people. Now, I don’t have a problem with clowns, but the one on this cover is flippin’ terrifying. The eyes, those teeth, you can definitely see this edition of Pennywise hunting down small children for a tasty snack.

A MONSTER CALLS – PATRICK NESS: While this isn’t a scary story and more of a tear-jerker, the cover is pretty sinister looking with the grayscale colour scheme and sketchy art style. There’s just enough detail to up the anxiety levels.

What creepy looking book covers have haunted your nightmares?

Spooktober: My Halloween Themed October 2021 TBR

Ignoring the fact that we’re already a week into October and I’m only just doing this now, here is my Halloween themed Spooktober TBR! There are 10 books on this list but as you likely already know, there is NO way I’ll get through all of them over the next 3.5 half weeks. However, because your girl is a serious mood reader, I need to have OPTIONS. I may also add something here or there if I happen to come across a book and suddenly get an irresistible urge to read it.

Putting this TBR together was more difficult than I expected because of accessibility issues. Due to Covid there have been some serious stock problems and shipping delays where I live. Combine this with some later AUS release dates for a few books already available overseas and you can understand my dilemma. As a result, many of my reads for this month will be kindle purchases. There were a few books I wish I could have included but couldn’t because (a) there’s no way for me to get a copy in the next few weeks or (b) I really want a physical copy and am willing to wait for one to become available. In the end, I’m excited about my TBR and really looking forward to getting stuck into it!


The Haunting of Hill House – Shirley Jackson*

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Four seekers arrive at a notoriously unfriendly pile called Hill House: Dr. Montague, an occult scholar looking for solid evidence of a “haunting”; Theodora, the lighthearted assistant; Eleanor, a friendless, fragile young woman well acquainted with poltergeists; and Luke, the future heir of Hill House. At first, their stay seems destined to be merely a spooky encounter with inexplicable phenomena. But Hill House is gathering its powers—and soon it will choose one of them to make its own.

* I can already tick this one off! (Since I’m posting my TBR so late).


To Break A Covenant – Alison Ames

To Break a Covenant by Alison Ames

Moon Basin has been haunted for as long as anyone can remember. It started when an explosion in the mine killed sixteen people. The disaster made it impossible to live in town, with underground fires spewing ash into the sky. But life in New Basin is just as fraught. The ex-mining town relies on its haunted reputation to bring in tourists, but there’s more truth to the rumors than most are willing to admit, and the mine still has a hold on everyone who lives there.

Clem and Nina form a perfect loop—best friends forever, and perhaps something more. Their circle opens up for a strange girl named Lisey with a knack for training crows, and Piper, whose father is fascinated with the mine in a way that’s anything but ordinary. The people of New Basin start experiencing strange phenomena—sleepwalking, night terrors, voices that only they can hear. And no matter how many vans of ghost hunters roll through, nobody can get to the bottom of what’s really going on. Which is why the girls decide to enter the mine themselves.


My Heart is a Chainsaw – Stephen Graham Jones

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Jade Daniels is an angry, half-Indian outcast with an abusive father, an absent mother, and an entire town that wants nothing to do with her. She lives in her own world, a world in which protection comes from an unusual source: horror movies…especially the ones where a masked killer seeks revenge on a world that wronged them. And Jade narrates the quirky history of Proofrock as if it is one of those movies. But when blood actually starts to spill into the waters of Indian Lake, she pulls us into her dizzying, encyclopedic mind of blood and masked murderers, and predicts exactly how the plot will unfold.

Yet, even as Jade drags us into her dark fever dream, a surprising and intimate portrait emerges… a portrait of the scared and traumatized little girl beneath the Jason Voorhees mask: angry, yes, but also a girl who easily cries, fiercely loves, and desperately wants a home. A girl whose feelings are too big for her body.


Payback’s a Witch – Lana Harper

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Got to have something fun and light to break up all the haunted house reads!

Emmy Harlow is a witch but not a very powerful one – in part because she hasn’t been home to the magical town of Thistle Grove in years. Her self-imposed exile has a lot to do with a complicated family history and a desire to forge her own way in the world, and only the very tiniest bit to do with Gareth Blackmoore, heir to the most powerful magical family in town and casual breaker of hearts and destroyer of dreams. But when a spellcasting tournament that her family serves as arbiters for approaches, it turns out the pull of tradition (or the truly impressive parental guilt trip that comes with it) is strong enough to bring Emmy back. She’s determined to do her familial duty; spend some quality time with her best friend, Linden Thorn; and get back to her real life in Chicago.

On her first night home, Emmy runs into Talia Avramov – an all-around badass adept in the darker magical arts – who is fresh off a bad breakup . . . with Gareth Blackmoore. Talia had let herself be charmed, only to discover that Gareth was also seeing Linden – unbeknownst to either of them. And now she and Linden want revenge. Only one question stands: Is Emmy in?But most concerning of all: Why can’t she stop thinking about the terrifyingly competent, devastatingly gorgeous, wickedly charming Talia Avramov?


Pumpkinheads – Rainbow Rowell & Faith Erin Hicks

Pumpkinheads by Rainbow Rowell

A quick read that I feel as though I’ve had on my TBR FOREVER.

Deja and Josiah are seasonal best friends. Every autumn, all through high school, they’ve worked together at the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world. (Not many people know that the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world is in Omaha, Nebraska, but it definitely is.) They say good-bye every Halloween, and they’re reunited every September 1.But this Halloween is different—Josiah and Deja are finally seniors, and this is their last season at the pumpkin patch. Their last shift together. Their last good-bye.

Josiah’s ready to spend the whole night feeling melancholy about it. Deja isn’t ready to let him. She’s got a plan: What if—instead of moping and the usual slinging lima beans down at the Succotash Hut—they went out with a bang? They could see all the sights! Taste all the snacks! And Josiah could finally talk to that cute girl he’s been mooning over for three years . . .What if their last shift was an adventure?


The Book of Accidents – Chuck Wendig

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Long ago, Nathan lived in a house in the country with his abusive father—and has never told his family what happened there. Long ago, Maddie was a little girl making dolls in her bedroom when she saw something she shouldn’t have—and is trying to remember that lost trauma by making haunting sculptures. Long ago, something sinister, something hungry, walked in the tunnels and the mountains and the coal mines of their hometown in rural Pennsylvania.

Now, Nate and Maddie Graves are married, and they have moved back to their hometown with their son, Oliver. And now what happened long ago is happening again . . . and it is happening to Oliver. He meets a strange boy who becomes his best friend, a boy with secrets of his own and a taste for dark magic. This dark magic puts them at the heart of a battle of good versus evil and a fight for the soul of the family—and perhaps for all of the world. But the Graves family has a secret weapon in this battle: their love for one another.


My Best Friend’s Exorcism – Grady Hendrix

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There were a heap of Grady Hendrix options for this TBR but I decided to go with this one because it seems to be the most popular, but also I’m all for those female friendship vibes.

Abby and Gretchen have been best friends since fifth grade, when they bonded over a shared love of E.T., roller-skating parties, and scratch-and-sniff stickers. But when they arrive at high school, things change. Gretchen begins to act….different. And as the strange coincidences and bizarre behavior start to pile up, Abby realizes there’s only one possible explanation: Gretchen, her favorite person in the world, has a demon living inside her. And Abby is not about to let anyone or anything come between her and her best friend. With help from some unlikely allies, Abby embarks on a quest to save Gretchen. But is their friendship powerful enough to beat the devil?


Summer Sons – Lee Mandelo

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Andrew and Eddie did everything together, best friends bonded more deeply than brothers, until Eddie left Andrew behind to start his graduate program at Vanderbilt. Six months later, only days before Andrew was to join him in Nashville, Eddie dies of an apparent suicide. He leaves Andrew a horrible inheritance: a roommate he doesn’t know, friends he never asked for, and a gruesome phantom that hungers for him.

As Andrew searches for the truth of Eddie’s death, he uncovers the lies and secrets left behind by the person he trusted most, discovering a family history soaked in blood and death. Whirling between the backstabbing academic world where Eddie spent his days and the circle of hot boys, fast cars, and hard drugs that ruled Eddie’s nights, the walls Andrew has built against the world begin to crumble. And there is something awful lurking, waiting for those walls to fall.


White Smoke – Tiffany D. Jackson

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I planned to read this last month as part of my Magical Readathon but didn’t get around to it. However, it’s perfectly suited to this month’s TBR so maybe it’s a good thing I held off.

Marigold is running from ghosts. The phantoms of her old life keep haunting her, but a move with her newly blended family from their small California beach town to the embattled Midwestern city of Cedarville might be the fresh start she needs. Her mom has accepted a new job with the Sterling Foundation that comes with a free house, one that Mari now has to share with her bratty ten-year-old stepsister, Piper.

The renovated picture-perfect home on Maple Street, sitting between dilapidated houses, surrounded by wary neighbors has its . . . secrets. That’s only half the problem: household items vanish, doors open on their own, lights turn off, shadows walk past rooms, voices can be heard in the walls, and there’s a foul smell seeping through the vents only Mari seems to notice. Worse: Piper keeps talking about a friend who wants Mari gone.

But “running from ghosts” is just a metaphor, right? As the house closes in, Mari learns that the danger isn’t limited to Maple Street. Cedarville has its secrets, too. And secrets always find their way through the cracks.


The Shining – Stephen King

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I’m going to add this one just in case I’m feeling brave and ambitious because it’s a chunker. It’s unlikely, especially considering how long I’ve wanted to read it and haven’t, but you never know. Plus, what would spooky season be without some King?

Jack Torrance’s new job at the Overlook Hotel is the perfect chance for a fresh start. As the off-season caretaker at the atmospheric old hotel, he’ll have plenty of time to spend reconnecting with his family and working on his writing. But as the harsh winter weather sets in, the idyllic location feels ever more remote…and more sinister. And the only one to notice the strange and terrible forces gathering around the Overlook is Danny Torrance, a uniquely gifted five-year-old. 


These should definitely keep me busy for the rest of the month. Hopefully I have a few really enjoyable books here. The end of the year and my top 10 ranking is getting closer and closer, after all!

Are you planning on getting into the spooky season with some Halloween-ish reads?

Top 10 Tuesday: Book Titles that are Complete Sentences

It’s Tuesday and I’m running low on post ideas so…you know what that means: it’s time for another Top 10 Tuesday (hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl). This week’s topic is a freebie so I’m using it to do a topic from a few weeks back which revolves around book titles that are complete sentences. This seemed really simple at first but I quickly realised there are a lot of titles out there that seem like sentences but, in truth, aren’t. This is why many of my picks for this post are phrases I can imagine people saying to one other, because that makes it a sentence, right?

Just for fun, I’ve decided to do 5 books I’ve read, 5 books on my TBR and, as a bonus, 5 books I don’t plan on reading but like the titles of. I know these lists are supposed to be a ranking type thing but half the time I’m more like, let’s just list these books that meet the prompt. That’s pretty much what I’m doing today.


Titles I’ve Read

  • And Then There Were None – Agatha Christie
  • Lock Every Door– Riley Sager
  • You Deserve Each Other – Sarah Hogle
  • I’ll Give You the Sun – Jandy Nelson
  • Life’s too Short – Abby Jimenez

Titles on My TBR

  • Once There Were Wolves – Charlotte McConaghy
  • We Are the Brennans – Tracey Lange
  • Take a Hint, Dani Brown – Talia Hibbert
  • Beautiful World, Where are You? – Sally Rooney
  • My Heart is a Chainsaw – Stephen Graham Jones

Bonus: Titles I Don’t Plan to Read But Like Regardless

  • Who’s Afraid of Virgina Woolf? – Edward Albee
  • We Have Always Lived in the Castle – Shirley Jackson
  • The Rest of Us Just Live Here – Patrick Ness
  • My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry – Fredrik Backman
  • Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? – Philip K. Dick

What’s your favourite title of a book that reads as a complete sentence?

Bookish Fun: ANOTHER 16 Book, Reading and Author Related Facts

That’s right, it’s time for EVEN MORE bookish, reading and author related facts. But why, you ask. Well, why not? And because you can never have enough fun facts about books and reading! So, let’s continue to expand your (and my) superior trivia knowledge, shall we?

Bookish & Reading Facts

1. there’s a precise word for ‘someone who reads in bed’

That’s right! The term is a ‘Librocubicularist’. Try saying that mouthful three times fast.

Gif.... Hey Andrew, whatcha reading? Guess your character and I are both  librocubicularists?! | Andrew scott, Jim moriarty, Sebastian moran

2. Reading is good for both mental and physical health

Although, I’m sure you were already aware of this. The University of Sussex conducted a study in 2009 that showed reading can reduce stress levels by up to 68%, which is even better than listening to music, taking a walk or having a cup of tea. Apparently it eases muscle tension and lowers your heart rate.

3. The World’s Oldest (Operating) bookstore is located in Lisbon, Portugal.

It’s called the ‘Livraria Bertrand’ and was founded by two French brothers in 1732!! When you buy a book there, the staff will ask if you want a stamp in it stating that you bought it at the world’s oldest bookstore. The books stocked are mostly in Portuguese but they do have a small English language section.

Bonus: Up until 2014, when it closed, the largest bookstore in the world by floor area was the Barnes and Noble flagship store on 5th Avenue in New York City. It covered 54,250 square feet and had 12.87 miles of shelving.

4. The original printing press was built in Germany by a man named Johannes Gutenberg and the first book he printed was The Gutenberg Bible.

It’s one of the rarest books in the world. Back in the 1970s, a copy was sold by a New York book dealer to a German museum for $1.8M. Again, note to self, do not get into rare book collecting.

5. Books actually do have a “smelL” which becomes more potent as they age

Ever wondered about the book smell we love so much? Well, it’s caused by a breakdown of two of the chemical components of paper – lignin and cellulose. The by-products of this process create a mixture of almond, vanilla, floral, and general sweet scents.

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6. Scientists can use this scent to determine a book’s age

By looking at the breakdown of these compounds, historians are able to use a process called material degradomics to determine the age of a book. Science is cool, guys.

7. The Romance Genre is a Massive Money Maker

Romance as a genre is often disregarded but you might be surprised to know that romance makes up over 1/3 of mass-market paperbacks sold. It’s a billion dollar industry and actually makes more money than several other genres combined. I’ll admit, I contribute to this.

8. Edgar Allan Poe’s The Murders in the Rue Morgue is credited as being the first ever ‘locked-door mystery’

However, if you go back a LONG way, it might actually be Greek historian Herodotus’s account from the 5th century BC of a robber whose headless body was found in a sealed stone chamber with only one guarded exit. Creepy.

9. in 2014, Amazon released a list of the most highlighted e-book passages and 19 of the top 25 were from The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins.

The most popular was the line, “Because sometimes things happen to people and they’re not equipped to deal with them”. People were obviously feeling very bleak at that point in time.

I Can'T Help It That I'M Popular GIF - Mean Girls Gretchen Wieners Lacey  Chabert - Discover & Share GIFs

Author Facts

10. Stieg Larsson got the idea for his The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo lead, Lisbeth Salander, by imagining what Pippi Longstocking would have been like as an adult.

Even the nameplate for one of Lisbeth’s apartments is an allusion to Pippi’s house Villa Villekulla. I’m sorry, but what??

11. Truman Capote was REALLY superstitious.

He wouldn’t start or finish a book on a Friday, allow more than 3 cigarette butts in an ash tray, stay in hotel rooms with unlucky numbers, call phone numbers that added up to unlucky numbers, or fly on a plane with more than two nuns on board. He always needed to write lying down and frequently carried a security blanket with him. However, some of these things might be due to the fact that he suffered from obsessive compulsive disorder.

12. Charles Dickens had a fascination with morgues and dead bodies

He was in the habit of visiting the Paris Morgue, even on holidays like Christmas and New Years. He referred to the morgue as ‘an old acquaintance’. Morbid, but whatever floats your boat I guess?

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13. Jim Butcher’s Codex Alera series was created because of a challenge of sorts from a member of an online writers’ workshop.

The man claimed Jim couldn’t write a good story based on a lame idea. He disagreed and said he’d do it based on any two lame ideas of the guy’s choosing. They were “Lost Roman Legion”, and “Pokémon”. And what do you know, the average Goodreads rating for book one, The Furies of Calderon, is over 4 stars.

14. Roald Dahl used to write his books in a small shed at the bottom of his garden.

He would sit in an cosy, old armchair with a pencil and a red book (apparently he never learned to type) for around 4 hours every day. That’s some serious dedication.

BONUS – Did you know that originally James and the Giant Peach was going to be about a giant cherry? It was changed because a peach was supposedly ‘prettier, bigger and squishier’. So weird.

15. Toni Morrison began working on her first novel while she was at university but it wasn’t published until she was 39 years old

She went on to win a Pulitzer prize, be awarded the US Presidential Medal of Freedom, and become the first African-American woman to ever win the Nobel Prize in literature . If that isn’t reason to never give up on your dreams, I don’t know what is.

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16. Marissa Meyer wrote her The Lunar Chronicles novella, Fairest, in just 9 days!

Originally it was going to be a short promotional story but ended up growing and developing so much beyond this that it was published as its own novella. I mean, I already knew that Meyer drafted the first 3 books in the series as part of different NaNoWriMos but this is crazy impressive!

BONUS: Meyer drew influence for the series from things like Star Wars and Sailor Moon. No wonder it’s so much fun.


How many of these facts did you already know about? Probably more than me, let’s be honest. Still, I hope you picked up one or two new things to use during super boring conversations.

Missed the first two posts full of bookish and author related facts? You can find them here & here.