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Book Reviews

Song of Kali by Dan Simmons

After the Romans had conquered the city of Carthage, they killed the men, sold the women and children into slavery, pulled down the great buildings, broke up the stones, burned the rubble, and salted the earth so that nothing would ever grow there again.

I don’t think I’ve ever read a book in my life set in India with such a great accent on how crappy the place is / was.

Told from first person POV, the story of how the Song Of Kali came to be is both a mix of supernatural and an absolute trashing of Calcutta and India. What begins as an exploration of an exotic and forbidding world turns into a harrowing descent of steadily mounting terror when an American writer travels into the dark underworld of the cult of Kali.

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This masterful and terrifying debut novel has earned Hugo- and Bram Stoker Award-winning author Dan Simmons the World Fantasy Award.

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Stephen King

End of Watch (The Bill Hodges Trilogy Book 3) – Stephen King

It seemed to him that whoever thought that one up really got hold of something, because it was darker than a woodchuck’s asshole this morning, and dawn wasn’t far away.

You gotta give it to Mr. King. He can definitely write a good horror novel. If you have liked these lovely books involving Finders Keepers, you might have run across “End of Watch” – the last story involving Bill Hodges before he finds his untimely death.

Mr. Mercedes * Stephen King

Finders Keepers * Stephen King Book Review

Stephen King – The Outsider (Finders Keepers)

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Book Reviews

How to Hang a Witch – Adriana Mather

“Salem prides itself on its witches. That history is very real to the people who live here.”

It’s the Salem Witch Trials meets Mean Girls in a debut novel from one of the descendants of Cotton Mather, where the trials of high school start to feel like a modern day witch hunt for a teen with all the wrong connections to Salem’s past.

Salem, Massachusetts is the site of the infamous witch trials and the new home of Samantha Mather. Recently transplanted from New York City, Sam and her stepmother are not exactly welcomed with open arms. Sam is the descendant of Cotton Mather, one of the men responsible for those trials and almost immediately, she becomes the enemy of a group of girls who call themselves The Descendants. And guess who their ancestors were?

If dealing with that weren’t enough, Sam also comes face to face with a real live (well technically dead) ghost. A handsome, angry ghost who wants Sam to stop touching his stuff. But soon Sam discovers she is at the center of a centuries old curse affecting anyone with ties to the trials. Sam must come to terms with the ghost and find a way to work with The Descendants to stop a deadly cycle that has been going on since the first accused witch was hanged. If any town should have learned its lesson, it’s Salem. But history may be about to repeat itself. 

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Book Reviews

The Girl Who Ignored Ghosts – K.C. Tansley

The Unbelievables – Book 1

“ Some mysteries were built so intricately, it took centuries to unravel them. Others remained forgotten, left to gather dust in the memories of the dead. Castle Creighton waited over a century for its chance.” — Professor Astor , The Price of Power: The Curse of America’s Uncrowned Aristocracy

This book felt like it was written as an assignment, it’s short at little over 200 pages and the writing feels like machine-gun fire. Short Sentences. Full Stops. No adjectives or descriptions of places or people.

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Book Reviews

Lunar Park by Bret Easton Ellis Book Review

I haven’t read any other books by Bret Ellis after his American Psycho (1991) and I thought I’d give Lunar Park a go. Written in 2006 it follows the life of the author post his literary success into a life of debauchery and then domestic bliss.

“I had dreamed of something so different from what reality was now offering up, but that dream had been a blind man’s vision. That dream was a miracle. The morning was fading. And I remembered yet again that I was a tourist here.”

At first, I thought it was an auto-biography (no, I did not read any reviews before I got started) and I was surprised to see elements of the supernatural sneak in from the middle of the book. There’s a haunted doll, a lot of uneasiness in the house where he lives with his wife and two children and weird emails that keep coming through at 2:40 AM from the bank of his father.
There’s a lot of the plot revolving around the father-son relationship, the first one between Bret and his dad and then between Bret and his son Robert.

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Book Reviews

The Hidden People by Alison Littlewood

fairies_at_cradle.jpgWould you believe that just at the start of the 20th century (or very close to it, in 1895) people still believed in Changelings and they actually killed a person in Scotland suspected to be one?

What is a changeling?

The relationship between humans and the fairy world is well-documented in British folklore, with fairy folk described as a far darker, more troublesome force than their contemporary counterparts. Our ancestors found fairies suspicious and frightening, and British mythology is rich with stories of unwary humans being tricked or punished by Fey folk. You’d be hard-pushed to recognise the benign, sparkly wish-granting creatures with which we are familiar.

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Growing Up

Why is Friday the 13th associated with unfortunate happenings?

Friday the 13th is perhaps the most prominent of a group of traditional anxiety-heightening superstitions that includes black cats, broken mirrors, stepping on cracks and walking under ladders. This collection of fearsome hobgoblins is an inherent feature of our Western culture, and our families and friends indoctrinate all of us.
The 1907 novel –Friday, the Thirteenth by Thomas Lawson, although not dedicated to the unlucky nature of the day, details a case study of what befalls those who engage in business on Friday the 13th.  By the time of the novel’s publication, superstitions about not closing deals or engaging in transactions of any significance on the day were already ubiquitous in the business world with many also refraining from travelling.
Doing important business on a Friday has been considered unlucky for over 1500 years.  Not surprisingly, at some point the 13thday of the calendar month also became synonymous with bad luck in the business world (just like ‘13’ of anything).  Since superstition about the number predates both the Julian and the Gregorian calendars, there is good reason to believe that from the very start, the 13th day of any month was considered inauspicious, if not unlucky.
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Dean Koontz

Forever Odd * Odd Thomas Series by Dean Koontz

The heart is an artist that paints over what profoundly disturbs us, leaving on the canvas a less dark, less sharp version of the truth.

This is a good, if quieter and slower-paced read than ODD THOMAS. We still have Odd with his dead-seeing power and his good heart that wants to help, even if it puts him at risk. This time, rather than major bodach-thrilling carnage, we have someone Odd cares about deeply in trouble–kidnapped by one whack Voodoo-ish skanky beauty. Danny suffers from a condition that makes his bones brittle and with the thought that his psychopath biological father has abducted him, it is vital that he is found soon. When Odd, with his unique powers for finding individuals, sets out he will find himself up against a twisted evil far greater than he could have imagined.

“Get out of here while you can. She’s crazier than a syphilitic suicide bomber with mad-cow disease.”

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Book Reviews

Tahereh Mafi * Ignite Me * Book 3

Ignite Me seemed to signal the end of the Shatter Me trilogy, following on the footsteps of Shatter me – Tahereh Mahi Book review and Unravel Me * Tahereh Mafi Book 2 from Shatter Me

It is often difficult to follow up with a sequel that satisfies readers. It’s difficult to choose just one because it’s kind of like a child in different stages of their life. One is a teenager. One is a young adult. One is an adult. It’s like you’re seeing someone grow up, and you appreciate each part of them. What I can say is that I’m really happy to have all three books out at the same. The growth that Juliette experiences—both as a character and through the prose—is something that I had intended from the very beginning but could not express without actually being able to deliver all the books at the same time. Her voice finds its strength. That was supposed to reflect her growth as a character.

Tahereh Mahi Interview with EW http://ew.com/article/2014/02/04/tahereh-mafi-ignite-me-qa/

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Book Reviews

Maggie Stiefvater * The Wolves Of Mercy Falls Trilogy

I picked up these three gorgeous books at a sale at The Works (paid £5 for something that made my life a lot nicer, filled my heart with love and light and made me forget the horrors of Twilight). The book covers are amazing but they give nothing away of the subject (btw, mine are the middle ones).