Tuesday, October 15, 2013

October TBR

I know we're halfway through the month so this seems a little weird (I've actually finished one of the books on the list and am halfway through two of them) but my plan for this month is to read around the theme of...

October is the month of Halloween after all.

Now before I get harassed for this I do not really mean Horror in the classic sense. I do not like scary movies. My brief experience with Stephen King led to many nightmares. I still can't use a bathroom if the shower curtain is drawn thanks to The Shining. When I refer to Horror I'm more referring to a subgenre which is actually one of my favorites, Gothic or Supernatural fiction. That is what I have decided to read this month.

For my contemporary novel I will be reading... The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova 

This is actually a reread for me. I read this book five years ago when vampires were the height of popularity. It is a metahistorical supernatural thriller (talk about subgenres) about a girl who finds a mysterious book in her father's study with a connection to Dracula, the real Dracula. She is immediatetly thrown into the deep and complicated past of her father and his search for the tomb of Vlad the Impaler and the truth about vampires. I used to refer to it as Dracula meets The Da Vinci Code. I'm actually really excited to reread it to see if the book actually holds up. To see if it's as good the second time or the fact that the surprise is gone takes away from its appeal.

And on that same token, for my Classic I will be reading... Dracula by Bram Stoker

As much as I love Gothic literature and Supernatural Thrillers I have never read Dracula, the seminal Horror classic. So after deciding to reread The Historian I've decided to finally bite the silver bullet (get it?) and read Dracula. I assume we all know the story but in case you've been living under a rock, it is the story of an Englishman who encounters the enigmatic and mysterious Count from Transylvania who is an undead vampire that survives by consuming human blood. I'm actually pretty excited to read Dracula and to experience a good old-fashioned vampire tale that is dark and dramatic.

My Young Adult novels this month are a little all over the place. I have a few series that I have been meaning to start and a few outstanding books that I've borrowed from the library. I hope to read at least 2-3 books but it may not be an entire series. Here are the books, in no particular order....

Miss Peregrine's School for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs 

This book I've been putting off borrowing from the library (even though I've put three separate holds on it because I wanted to read it in October). It is the story of Jacob, a sixteen year old boy who is told by his grandfather that when he was a child he lived on an island off the coast of Wales where peculiar children were kept for their own safety. When his grandfather dies in a horrific accident his last words convince Jacob that he most visit and investigate the island where he finds out that after all these years some of the kids are still alive and they may be dangerous. I'm pretty excited about this book. Mystery, Thriller, and Supernatural all rolled into one. The best part of it though is that the author Ransom Riggs incorporates old creepy photographs throughout the story. The photographs are as much a part of the book as the words. I've heard some mixed reviews about the story though. A lot people really like it but other people found the mystery a little predictable. Let's see what I think.

I also plan to start the following two series which may result in reading one or more of the books in the series, I will only list the first book in the series.

The Caster Chronicles by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

Book 1: Beautiful Creatures
This book has been categorized by the authors as a Supernatural Gothic Romance. Sign me up! These are all genres that I love and putting them all together makes it all the better. This is the story of Ethan Wate who can't wait to leave the small town of Gatlin, South Carolina. But when a mysterious girl moves to town who is related to the town recluse he becomes instantly entranced by her. But, of course, she has a dark secret. She and her entire family are magical Casters, and thanks to a family curse on her 16th birthday she will be claimed for either Light or Dark. I'm not generally really into young adult romances but the supernatural and gothic elements are intriguing me and I figure I'll give it a try. They also made a movie based on this book that I've been wanting to see. I figure I should read the book first.

The Gemma Doyle Trilogy by Libba Bray

Book 1: A Great and Terrible Beauty
This is the story of Gemma Doyle, a girl who is forced to move from India to England after her mother's death on her 16th birthday (notice a theme with 16th birthdays and mysterious deaths yet?) that Gemma witnessed through a mysterious vision. She is shipped off to Spence Academy, a school for girls, where she gets involved with a group of popular girls on their exploration into the dark and supernatural past of the school. It's Mean Girls meets a dark version The Chronicles of Narnia. It has very Gothic undertones and sounds really interesting. I've heard really good things about the author Libba Bray and I am really excited to read it and explore an intriguing new series.

For my audiobook I will be reading... Insurgent by Veronica Roth

It doesn't fit the Horror/Gothic/Supernatural theme for the month but I don't really care! I read Divergent last month and I know I'm late to the game but at least I showed up at all. The final book in the trilogy comes out this month so I can actually finish the series, which I like. I have a trip coming up (I like to listen to audiobooks during long car rides) so I figured I would get the audiobook and listen to it during my drive. If you are unaware of the Divergent series it is the story of Tris who lives in a dystopian future where her society is divided into five factions based on the cultivation of a virtue that they think is the most important to the success of the race. During your sixteenth year you take a test which tells you which faction you are meant to be in and then you have to choose which faction you will live the rest of your life with. When Tris takes her test however she finds out that she doesn't quite fit into one faction, she is Divergent, and being Divergent is dangerous. This is the second book in the series and takes off where the last book left off, with society in unrest. The first book was action-packed and full of surprises and I expect much of the same from Insurgent.

There you have it. The books that I plan to read in October. Stay tuned for my reviews and as always HAPPY READING!

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