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Search tags: halloween-bingo
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review 2018-09-24 21:50
The Invisible Man / H.G. Wells
The Invisible Man - H.G. Wells

This masterpiece of science fiction is the fascinating story of Griffin, a scientist who creates a serum to render himself invisible, and his descent into madness that follows.

 

I read this book to fill the Classic Horror square of my 2018 Halloween Bingo card.

I remember owning the Classics Illustrated comic book of this title as a child and being rather fascinated by the idea of an invisible person. I remember being captivated by Griffin’s fake nose! If I’m remembering correctly, though, I don’t think the violence in the comic was equal to Wells’ original work. It was probably watered down a little to be suitable for a juvenile audience (although nowadays I’m not sure that would be necessary).

I spent a great deal of last year on the cataloguing of a very large collection of books by and about Herbert George Wells and I was interested to read another of his fictional works. I’ll work through more of them as I can. He was an interesting person and a prolific writer.

This is definitely horror-lite. The most horrifying part is actually the behaviour of Griffin, the invisible man of the title. His lack of empathy for his fellow human beings (and the cat that he tests his invisibility device on) is scarier than his actual achievement. During the reading I kept wondering, was he mentally ill and became fixated on this idea or was he fixated on the idea before he became mentally ill? Someone with more empathy could have charted a far different course—co-operating with his fellow beings, rather than trying to terrorize them.

Reminiscent of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, another tale of a scientist making dubious moral choices.

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review 2018-09-24 20:17
Slasher Girls & Monster Boys
Slasher Girls & Monster Boys - Jay Kristoff,Carrie Ryan,McCormick Templeton,Stefan Bachmann,Cat Winters,April Genevieve Tucholke,A.G. Howard,Megan Shepherd,Leigh Bardugo,Kendare Blake,Marie Lu,Nova Ren Suma,Kami Garcia

A host of the sharpest young adult authors come together in this collection of terrifying tales and psychological thrillers. Each story draws from a mix of literature, film, television, or even music to offer something new and fresh and unsettling. Even better? After you’ve teased out each tale’s references, satisfy your curiosity at the end, where the inspiration is revealed. There are no superficial scares here. These are stories that will make you think even as they keep you on the edge of your seat. From bloody horror, to the supernatural, to unnerving, all-too-possible realism, this collection has something for anyone looking for an absolute thrill.

 

I read this book to fill the Slasher square of my 2018 Halloween Bingo card.

I found this to be a strong collection of YA short fiction. Particular favourites of mine were The birds of Azalea Street by Nova Ren Suma and The dark, scary parts and all by Danielle Paige.

It was interesting to read at the end of each story which works of fiction or film had provided inspiration for the author. Despite reaching to the past for inspiration, the stories were very up-to-date in theme, including several where young women are reaching out from the grave to correct the wrongs of patriarchal society.

Although I’m usually a bit leery of horror fiction, I found all of these stories quite engaging. A most pleasurable way to fulfill my Halloween commitment.

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review 2018-09-24 19:32
Witch Dance
Witch Dance - Lori Crane

Southern Gothic for Halloween Bingo!

 

Margaret and Thomas Speedwell are looking forward to a relaxing vacation with their twin girls Sarah and Emily at the Witch Dance campground near Margaret's home town in Mississippi.  The area of Witch Dance not only carries the story of the witches themselves, areas where the witches danced in circles, where grass no longer grows.  It is also where the people of the Choctaw tribes  settled and buried their people in what are known as the Bynum Mounds.  Sarah and Emily run off to play on the Mounds as soon as the family arrives, however only Emily comes back from the Mound.  Sarah has disappeared without a trace and Emily won't talk.  Margaret is desperate as search efforts and police turn up with nothing.  However, Margaret's childhood friend Rich digs up reports from the past about other children disappearing from the same area.  They are all children who are twins and none of them have returned.  Determined to find her daughter, Margaret will have to accept help from an unlikely and unbelievable source and dig into a story that is centuries old. 

 
An intriguing mystery that combines history and the supernatural for a chilling tale.  Lori Crane weaves together the legend of Witch Dance and the stories of the Chickasaw and Choctaw tribes  in order to concoct a compelling reason for the children to disappear from the Mounds.  I was pulled into Chicksah's wife, Salina's story as she dealt with tragedy and found her way into a life changing coven.  Margaret is a difficult character, she is a doting mother but clearly suffering from postpartum anxiety.  This was a fast paced read where time moved quickly.  The mystery and suspense intensify as Salina and Margaret's stories converge as to how and why Sarah was taken.  Clues are dotted throughout the book, however some of the twists were very surprising to me.  Witch Dance is a shorter read and the a so I felt some details were skipped that could have added a lot more ambiance and suspense to the story.  Overall, a unique thriller combining different aspects of historical myths and modern day sleuthing.

This book was received for free in return for an honest review. 
 
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review 2018-09-24 17:48
Snow White and the Huntsman
Snow White & the Huntsman - Hossein Amini,Evan Daugherty,Lily Blake,John Lee Hancock

The book is described as a breathtaking new vision of a legendary tale. Snow White is the only person in the land fairer than the evil queen who is out to destroy her. But in a twist to the fairytale, the Huntsman ordered to take Snow White into the woods to be killed becomes her protector and mentor in a quest to vanquish the Evil Queen.

 

I have been meaning to see this movie for years now but have not gotten around to it. When I saw the Grimm Tales square, I checked to see if there was a book based on the movie and there was. I normally don't read books solely based on movies if I have seen the movie before because they are usually a scene by scene rehashing of the movie with no added character thoughts or feelings. Like I said, I haven't seen the movie but I could tell by reading the book it was like all others. Characters were not really fleshed out well and scenes were choppy and quick. However, it does make me want to see the movie even more now to watch it all unfold on screen. Plus bonus Chris Hemsworth as the Huntsman.

 

I am using this for the Grimm Tales square.

 

 

 

 

 

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review 2018-09-24 17:47
The Hollow Man
The Hollow Man - John Dickson Carr

Even though I was having eye problems last night, I stupidly stayed up to finish this book. It was so good. So many twists and turns and a perfect locked room murder mystery. It reminded me a bit of "The Tokyo Zodiac Murders" as well as "The Murder at the Vicarage" that you have something that is supposedly impossible, becoming possible. The ending was top notch with all revealed after two (I think there were two) red herrings. Loved this book.

 

Professor Charles Grimaud is confronted by a mysterious man come across him and soem of his friends who claims that men can arise from the grave and walk through walls. Not going to lie here, was a bit confused where Carr was taking us. But all is explained later on to my and potential readers satisfaction.

The man, illusionist Pierre Fley claims that he himself has arisen from a grave and threatens Grimaud by saying that his brother wants him dead. We then follow a few days later and found that Grimaud has been shot and left to die in a room that a man entered and did not leave. When Dr. Gideon Fell and Superintendent Hadley come onto the scene, the question is how did the professor get shot and the would be murderer get away with no one seeing them? Also there are no footprints in the snow so how did the person get away? Did they fly? Believe me I spent most of this book trying out different solutions and was wrong with all of them. Good luck to you if you manage to figure this out.

 

I don't want to spoil anymore of the plot cause so much happens that at times you are going to go wait a minute? What? And have to go back and re-read. 


I loved the writing though at times the story gets a bit bogged down with Fell trying to tell Hadley what he has wrong or telling Hadley that he himself was wrong. I maybe went what a few times. The flow gets better after we get to Grimaud being shot. Not going to lie, the first part confused the life out of me so had to start the story twice in order to get a better sense of people that were being named. 


Carr includes diagrams of the room prior to the solution being provided and another diagram after the solution is provided which I totally got a kick out of. 

 

The ending surprised the heck out of me though. I was expecting another paragraph or something, but nothing doing. 

 

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