Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke wasn’t what I was expecting, which I guess is why you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover. I did. The gorgeous black cover looked gloriously spooky and immediately caught my eye when I visited The Book Lounge to spend some birthday vouchers. I loved the assortment of owls, moons, apples, spiderwebs and stars set against the black background. I added it to my Halloween reads pile.
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Halloween is less than a month away. It’s about this time every year that I start frantically Googling horror movies I haven’t seen and listing scary books to read in October. This year I dove into a Halloween read early. Technically, There’s Someone Inside Your House is only being released in October – just in time for the big night – but I was lucky to receive an advance copy.
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The Breakfast Club meets Gossip Girl in this fast-paced teen murder mystery.
Five high school students are given detention when phones are discovered in their bags by a teacher notorious for searching gym bags before lessons. One of the students, Simon, runs a gossip App called About That, making him the most hated kid at school. What makes him so dangerous is that the rumours he reports always turn out to be true.
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Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls has been sitting on my shelf for a while, (terrible, I know.) In my defense I had a book to finish, short stories to hand in and a workshop to plan. But once I had finished relaunching my website, it was the first book I reached for. To sum up my thoughts – it’s just magical.
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Edited by Jared Shurin and Mahvesh Murad, this gorgeous anthology features a diverse array of authors, including Nnedi Okorafor, Neil Gaiman, EJ Swift and James Smythe.
The collection comprises dreamy tales with a palpable middle-eastern flavour, reminiscent of One Thousand and One Nights. Many of the stories are set in the middle east. What holds them together is that they all feature the legendary djinn, a creature from Arabian mythology – commonly known as the genie from Aladdin’s lamp.
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From the archive: 5 June 2014
I read The Fault in Our Stars over Christmas (it was a gift to myself). In fact, I very rudely sat outside in the sun, while my partner and his family were inside in the middle of Christmas lunch celebrations. I couldn’t put the book down, not even on Christmas Day.
(See this picture? That’s me stretched out between two camping chairs while trifle is being served inside.)
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I know a few people who make a habit of not reading Next Big Thing books because ultimately, the end result never quite lives up to the hype. (I haven’t read The Girl on the Train and the movie’s already gone to DVD).
But sometimes it does.
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I’m not quite sure why I love Agatha Christie mysteries so much. Nostalgia. The challenge of trying to figure out who did it. I read them again and again, especially around this time of year. And each re-read is as satisfying as the first time round.
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Myths are awesome. They’re the world’s first stories. Most people are familiar with the big Greek myths, like the heroic tale of Perseus, who chopped off Medusa’s head, or Hercules’ incredible twelve tasks, or even Jason’s search for the Golden Fleece. Works like The Iliad and The Odyssey ensured that these stories have lived on for centuries. Hollywood has been dipping its pen into the ancient myth pool for years. Thanks to Disney, most kids grow up knowing all about Hercules and his satyr side-kick, Phil. (Are you turning in your grave yet, Homer?)
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I love are books that challenge readers to think for themselves. Think Suzanne Collin’s The Hunger Games, Veronica Roth’s Divergent and Cory Doctorow’s Little Brother – books that make the reader believe that they have a voice, a future and inner strength capable of facing any enemy. Glaze is a smart, slick book that does just that.
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