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text 2017-01-02 05:10
Top 10 Books/Audiobooks from 2016
The Girl on the Glider - Brian Keene,Keith Minnion
The One and Only Ivan - Patricia Castelao,Katherine Applegate
Written in Red - Anne Bishop
Murder of Crows - Anne Bishop
Vision in Silver - Anne Bishop
Gilded Needles (Valancourt 20th Century Classics) - Christopher Fowler,Michael McDowell,Mike Mignola
Birthdays for the Dead - Stuart MacBride
The 45% Hangover [A Logan and Steel novella] (Kindle Single) - Stuart MacBride
Close to the Bone - Stuart MacBride
The Elementals - Michael Rowe,Michael McDowell

Image result for top reads

Last year I read 212 books.

 

A breakdown of my reads:

 

Graphic Novels/comics - 146

Audiobooks - 5

Novels/Novellas - 61

 

Here are some of my book stats

 

 

My Favourite Reads of the Year

 

The Girl on the Glider - Brian Keene,Keith Minnion 

 

Author Brian Keene tells a tale of being haunted by a young girl. This story works best as a glimpse into the life of the author as he tries to manage work against family life. This for me was a brutally honest and personal read, kudos to the author for baring so much of his day to day life, warts and all.

 

The One and Only Ivan - Patricia Castelao,Katherine Applegate 

 

Ivan is a captive gorilla, housed in mall zoo!! He and other animal residents seem resigned to their life until Ruby arrives and Ivan decides he wants more for her.

Beautifully told, heartbreaking at times but ultimately uplifting. Ivan's observations on humans had me laughing as well as crying at the senseless cruelty that is meted out to  animals.

 

Written in Red - Anne Bishop  Murder of Crows - Anne Bishop  Vision in Silver - Anne Bishop  

 

The Others series is the book equivalent of crack. I literally can't get enough even though this series should bug the shit out of me, it works. I never expected to like this series as much as I have and I'm grateful to the BL peeps who put up such great reviews that piqued my interest.

 

Gilded Needles (Valancourt 20th Century Classics) - Christopher Fowler,Michael McDowell,Mike Mignola 

 

1880s New York, a power struggle between Black Lena and the upper class Stallworths begins as the Stallworths sentence 3 of Lena's family members to be hanged.

I loved the period feel to this read, there was a lot of detail that went into each area, the dirty, debauchery of The Black Triangle which contrasted sharply with the sterile elegance of Washington Square.

This tale of revenge was brutal and shocking but I still felt myself cheering Lena on.

 

Birthdays for the Dead - Stuart MacBride 

 

Gritty and disturbing as most of Macbrides work is, this was still able to deliver a gut punch at the end that left me reeling. Scottish noir at it's best.

 

The 45% Hangover [A Logan and Steel novella] (Kindle Single) - Stuart MacBride 

 

A novella that highlights the relationship between Logan Macrae and DCI Steel who find themselves in a tricky but hilarious situation.

 

Close to the Bone - Stuart MacBride 

 

Although this book had me disliking the caricature that DCI Steel is becoming it was still a strong read for me. I do feel sorry for poor Logan and hope that Macbride gives him a happier home life at some point.

 

The Elementals - Michael Rowe,Michael McDowell 

 

Creepy and something I couldn't read when it got dark as it was freaking me out too much. Amazing to think how much horror you can get out of sand and a dysfunctional family.

Simple but very effective

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text 2016-11-28 23:37
I had like three audible credits I hadn't yet used, so I did a little shopping today.
The Elementals - Valancourt Books,Michael P. Kube-McDowell,R.C. Bray
Burnt Offerings: Valancourt 20th Century Classics - Robert Marasco,R.C. Bray,Blue Heron Audio
Antique Dust: Ghost Stories - Robert Westall,R.C. Bray,LLC Valancourt Books

All three narrated by R.C. Bray.

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review 2016-11-14 17:19
Did not quite work for me
Wicked Stepmother - Dennis Schuetz,Axel Young,Michael P. Kube-McDowell I have mixed feelings about Michael McDowell and yet I know that many of my friends on goodreads enjoy every word he has ever put into print. I had great trouble with the southern gothic tale "The Elementals" thought "Toplin" a work of great intrigue mystery and strangeness and yet was enthralled by "Cold Moon over Babylon" and saw it as one of the great horror stories of the last 30+ years. Wicked Stepmother is somewhat difficult to categorize and I certainly find it hard to identify with the writing style of McDowell. It is without doubt not meant to be serious but more a satirical and somewhat camp study of a Bostonian family, their social standing, and their murdering attempts to maintain that social status. It has lots of fun moments, a few little surprises but ultimately did not dazzle me in the same way that Cold Moon did.
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text 2016-10-20 11:06
Reading progress update: I've read 9%.
The Elementals - Michael Rowe,Michael McDowell

My last book for the halloween bingo and I hope that I will finish the bingo on a high note. In the prologue there is a weird funeral going on, so I´m definitely intrigued to find out what is going to happen next.

 

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review 2016-10-16 20:37
Babylon & Blueberries- 4.5 stars...
Cold Moon Over Babylon (Valancourt 20th Century Classics) - Michael P. Kube-McDowell,Mike Mignola

"Terror grows in Babylon, a typical sleepy Southern town with its throbbing sun and fog-shrouded swamps."

 

"Margaret Larkin has been robbed of her innocence -- and her life. Her killer is rich and powerful, beyond the grasp of earthly law."

 

"Now, in the murky depths of the local river, a shifting, almost human shape slowly takes form. Night after night it will pursue the murderer. It will watch him from the trees. And in the chill waters of the river, it will claim him in the ultimate embrace."

 

"The cold moon rises, the awful squishing sounds begin."

 

 

Another fantastic book by McDowell! He has a knack for writing about small-towns & Southern characters. Cold Moon reminded me a little bit of his Blackwater Saga just without the 'family saga' storyline- even the Perdido was back for a small part. : )

 

If you haven't read any of McDowell's books yet, you really should! His talent for combining Southern gothic and horror is exceptional & something you don't want to miss out on!

 

*I read this with HA-Buddy Read & for my 2016 Halloween Bingo: ~Full Moon~ square

 

Full Moon square

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