It is now finally Autumn and we’re well and truly into the spooky season, although if you wander into my local shops and supermarket, you’d think we had completely bypassed Halloween and gone straight to Christmas – yes Sainsbury’s, I’m looking at you with the mince pies and advent calendars, although if you stocked lebkuchen again I wouldn’t be disappointed.
Anyway, we’re here for all the Autumn vibes and the first of a few blog posts that wouldn’t be out of place within Blogtober. I’m not participating in it by any means but they’re nice posts to write to hopefully get me back into the swing of things, and we’re starting off with spooky reads. I love a good, unsettling read at this time of year, not too scary as I am a little bit of a wimp, but something that is just creepy or spooky enough to feel the goosebumps prickling your skin.
Before I ramble on for too long, let’s dive into the list:
The Haunting Season
The description for this book says perfect for long Winter nights. Scrap or simply extent that to Autumn nights too because they’re long and it is the time for some spookiness, especially if you’re not all that into Halloween but still want to experience the creepy vibes. It has also just been released in paperback, so now is the chance to pick up a physical copy and enjoy.
It is a book I haven’t yet read in its entirety, but from the authors featured in this anthology such as Laura Purcell, Bridget Collins, Kiran Millwood Hargrave, Natasha Pulley, all popular and well-known in British publishing for their gothic, atmospheric storytelling, it is bound to be a good read and one that is destined to be found or put on many a person’s Autumn and Winter TBR.
The Monsters of Rookhaven by Pádraig Kenny
A cross-over KS2/Middle Grade and YA book, this is another unsettling, creepy read that leads you to question what it means to be a monster. However, it has found family and friendship at its heart and that balance works incredibly well, especially alongside the eerie illustrations that accompany one specific POV. If you like books and stories not too dissimilar to Gallant and Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, this is one to read. It also has a sequel The Shadows of Rookhaven, which sounds just as eerie, so if The Monsters of Rookhaven whets the spooky appetite enough, there’s another book to enjoy.
A Skinful of Shadows by Frances Hardinge
Okay, any book written by Frances Hardinge could be on this list. They all have creepy, unsettling and rather supernatural concepts to them but A Skinful of Shadows is the first and only book I’ve read, and it certainly won’t be the last. Connected to The Lie Tree, which I actually didn’t know until now, and set around the time of the English Civil War, albeit fictionalised, Makepeace has to defend herself from ghosts and spirits, those who want to possess her and remain safe from harm. This book is incredible, physically and on audio, with whimsical writing, an enveloping atmosphere, and a blend of history and fantasy, so there is no doubt it is perfect reading for this time of year.
Hold Back The Tide and Her Dark Wings by Melinda Salisbury
I’ll leave my review Hold Back The Tide here, but I will say this, if you want to be thrown into a story right from the get go because you’re in the biggest reading slump known to mankind and you want to read a fast-paced story, this is it! It is atmospheric, unnerving, creepy, and bound to keep you in its thrall until the very end. Her Dark Wings is no different. Granted, I haven’t read it yet (I was saving it for October), it will possess those same unsettling, haunting elements that we’ve come to love and expect from a Melinda Salisbury novel. What else can you ask for?
And those are the five main books I have to share. I will add some other honourable mentions just below as I initially planned on a longer list, but thought it would have been too much. Anyway, here they are for you to check out and hopefully read:
- Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
- The Animals at Lockwood Manor by Jane Healey
- Wakenhyrst by Michelle Paver
- The entire Frey and McGray series by Oscar de Muriel (featured by the 7th and final book, The Sign of the Devil)
- Daughter of Darkness by Katharine and Elizabeth Corr (My current read, which I’m reading rather slowly, but it is AMAZING!)
What spooky reads would you recommend for any October TBR?
As always, thanks for reading and have a brazzle dazzle day!