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  • Ryanne Harper

Spooky Reads, Halloween Vibes, a Books I Ghosted

October is my second favorite month of the year; November is my absolute favorite. The weather is perfect, Thanksgiving is involved, I can wear a sweater most days. What's not to love about November? But I digress. Back to the topic at hand: October reads.

For me, October is all about a good mystery. And who doesn't love a good mystery? Shout out to local legend Wayne Hancock. I quote the man enough, I should at least give him credit. So, what have I gotten into this year? Well, a Goodreads fight with a stranger and a few good mysteries.

Troubled Blood, Robert Galbraith.

Okay, disclaimer time. I in no way condone or support J.K. Rowling's beliefs regarding the trans community. I believe this woman, who I once greatly admired, has either lost her ever loving mind, or maybe she's always been a terrible person, and she's just now comfortable revealing that? All I know is, I'm disappointed in her as a person. I am also a sucker for a good series, and the Strike books are just that. So, I put my beliefs aside and bought the book. I felt icky about it. I still feel icky about. But I read it, and I, reluctantly, enjoyed the heck out of it.

My Name is Trouble, James Taylor and Marco Sparks

Trouble seems to be a theme. And, unlike Troubled Blood, I felt zero ickiness diving back into this gem. I have said it one thousand times, but I will say it again. If you haven't read this book, you need to stop what you're doing and buy it immediately. This was a reread for me, but it had to be done. The second installment dropped on the 13th, and I needed a refresher.

If mysteries aren't your jam - I honestly can't imagine what that's like - then how about some delightful (and sometimes scary) folklore? Folklore: A Field Guide is the most fun I've had working on a book. My friend/writing partner and I worked tirelessly to compile her folklore series into a book complete with exclusive interviews with ghosts and illustrations by yours truly. It's a fun book. Check it out.

Okay, now for the not so fun part. I've picked some real duds lately. Milk duds. They seem like they'll be okay, but you get into and it's just a let down, but you've committed now so you can't immediately get rid of it because it's all up in your teeth. I've picked a few, but we'll focus on the most recent.

My Best Friend's Exorcism

Set in the '80s, it comes with a rockin' play list, and it's got a creepy vibe. I thought this book would be right up my alley. It's not. The pace is somehow really slow. It starts out strong. BANG. A girl gets lost in the woods, she comes back all weird - because, you know, they don't come back the same - and her best friend is immediately worried. And then we spend the next 60% of the book coming up with possible explanations for her behavior. I still don't know if she's actually possessed. I may not abandon this one forever, but it had to be put aside to make room for Trouble.

I made a point to leave off any Stephen King books because I feel it's a little cliche`. If you're into that, though, Bag of Bones scared the bejeezus out of me over the summer. For weeks I jumped in and out of bed from a distance so that bag of bones under the bed couldn't touch my foot.

You guys, my reading pace has slowed way down since I started school. Who knew school meant spending three or four hours a night studying, reading, and doing homework after working all day? My brain doesn't have the capacity to juggle more than one book at a time, so I've slowed down. But that's okay. So long as I don't waste my time on milk duds.

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