Saturday, October 31, 2015

Stacking the Shelves #48

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by TYNGA'S REVIEWS that features the books we bought, borrowed, were gifted, and were given for review.

Happy Halloween! 
Read any spooky books this month?
You can see what I've been reading in my October Wrap Up!

It's been a while since I've done a STS and I don't have much to show anyway but here it is!



Link your STS in the comments so I can check it out and comment back!

October 2015 Wrap Up

I tried to read a few good horror / ghost stories this month. I actually did way better with reading than I planned! 

Books I Read

Challenge Progress

New Places Visited

London, England (Library of Souls)
San Diego, California (In the Shadows of Blackbirds)
Atlanta, Georgia (The Walking Dead)

Here's a screenshot of my map!

I didn't read any of my own books this month.


How did you guys do on your goals this month? What was your favorite book that you read this month?
Mine was 'Library of Souls'!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Book Review: In the Shadow of Blackbirds by Cat Winters

Title: In the Shadow of Blackbirds
Author: Cat Winters
Publisher: Amulet Books
Publication Date: April 2, 2016
Genre: Young Adult Historical Paranormal
Length: 387 pages
Source: Borrowed

Literary Awards
Bram Stoker Award (2013)
School Library Journal Best Book of the Year (2013)
William C. Morris YA Debut Award Nominee (2014)
Oregon Spirit Book Award for Young Adults (2013)
Missouri Gateway Readers Award Nominee (2016)

In 1918, the world seems on the verge of apocalypse. Americans roam the streets in gauze masks to ward off the deadly Spanish influenza, and the government ships young men to the front lines of a brutal war, creating an atmosphere of fear and confusion. Sixteen-year-old Mary Shelley Black watches as desperate mourners flock to seances and spirit photographers for comfort, but she herself has never believed in ghosts. During her bleakest moment, however, she's forced to rethink her entire way of looking at life and death, for her first love - a boy who died in battle - returns in spirit form. But what does he want from her?

Featuring haunting archival early-twentieth-century photographs, this is a tense, romantic story set in a past that is eerily like our own time.

My Rating
5 stars

My Thoughts

It is 1918 and the Spanish influenza has plagued the country. Mary Shelley Black is sent to San Diego, California to live with her Aunt Eva in hopes of escaping the sickness. Once there, her aunt insists she sit for spirit photographer Julius Embers, brother to Stephen Embers, whom is a childhood friend that she has been corresponding with since he went off to war. When Stephen's 'spirit' appears in her photograph it sets off a series of paranormal events that lead Mary Shelley to search out the truth of his death, even if it means getting a little too close for comfort. 

This was an entertaining and semi-spooky ghost story without being overwhelming or an edge-of-your-seat, read-only-during-the-day, sleep-with-your-light-on kind of scary. I liked the historical plot which gave a feeling of dread and anticipation of death around every corner. The decades where seances were so popular has always fascinated me and this was the first time I've come across anything about spirit photography. I adore ghost stories but it is so rare to find one geared towards young adults and I really enjoyed it!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Book Review: Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs

Title: Library of Souls
Author: Ransom Riggs
Series: Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children #3
Publisher: Quirk Books
Publication Date: September 22, 2015
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal Fantasy
Length: 458 pages
Source: Borrowed

The adventures that began with Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children and continued with Hollow City comes to a thrilling conclusion with Library of Souls.

As the story opens, sixteen year old Jacob discovers a powerful new ability, and soon he's diving through history to rescue his peculiar companions from a heavily guarded fortress. Accompanying Jacob on his journey are Emma Bloom, a girl with fire at her fingertips, and Addison MacHenry, a dog with a nose for sniffing out lost children.

They'll travel from modern-day London to the labyrinthine alleys of Devil's Acre, the most wretched slum in all of Victorian England. It's a place where the fate of peculiar children everywhere will be decided once and for all.

Like its predecessors, Library of Souls blends thrilling fantasy with never-before-published vintage photography.

My Thoughts:
There was just long enough between Hollow City and this last book to help me forget plenty of what happened in the first two books. But do I have time to re-read them? No. Do I want to? Of course! Miss Peregrine's has been on my re-read list for 2-3 years now.

I wasn't so lost that I forgot everything but I feel like not remembering every little detail took away from my experience with Library of Souls. Nonetheless, it was pretty good and I thoroughly enjoyed the ending to this peculiar series.

This really has been such an awesome trilogy.
I loved the stand out peculiar characters, the horror, the history, the vintage photos... These books were such a fun macabre adventure! I'm looking forward to the movie adaptation of Miss Peregrine's and am wondering if they'll do all three books. From the moment the first book started to get a little 'peculiar' I knew that Tim Burton could make this book into an awesome movie. I really hope I was right!

I think that Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children is still my favorite out of the three but Library of Souls seemed to have a lot more edge of the seat action in it. 

One of the things I liked least about this last book was the photographs. I felt that some photos were a little pointless, didn't help the story, and actually took away from how I imagined certain things to be; such as Abaton's entrance and the caves. I just saw them differently in my head and the photos seemed pretty boring to be honest. I loved the photographs in the first two books and these last ones were a bit of a let down.

Other than the pictures, I felt that this was the perfect ending to a series and would recommend it to everyone who likes a little 'strange' with their stories! 

My Rating

5 stars

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday #55

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

My Top Ten Random Scary Reads
(Some recent reads and some old favorites)

These are my favorite classic horror novels! I recommend everyone read these! (Aren't these leather bound covers gorgeous?! I want them!)

I loved this one. It's full of MONSTERS!

This is the story of a teenage gravedigger. How much creepier can it get?

The best way I can describe this graphic novel is 'Addam's Family meets Supernatural'.

This is a middle grade novel but there are some seriously creepy scenes in this book! 

This is one I recommend to everyone! It's not really scary but it has a dark, macabre touch that I love. I am eagerly awaiting the Tim Burton movie adaptation! 

sI prefer this 'haunted house' story over Shirley Jackson's'The Haunting of Hill House'. Susan Hill has written lots of ghost stories but I've only read this one and 'The Small Hand' so far.

An old favorite! This one is about a boy who grows up in a cemetery!

While this one is older than The Graveyard Book, it is similarly about a boy raised by creepy creatures of the night.


What is YOUR favorite horror novel? Leave me your recommendations in the comments, please! 

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Anticipating October 2015 - New Releases

October 2015

Most Anticipated

Piques My Interest

Sequels to series I haven't started yet