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Slider by Pete Hautman


Slider - Pete Hautman

Audience: Middle School

Format: Hardcover/Library


A sixteen-inch pizza, fresh from the oven, is a thing of beauty.

– first sentence


So, that opening line tells you a great deal about this book, but not the heart of it. David loves competitive eating, both watching it as a sport and doing it himself. He bids on and accidentally buys (for $2,000, on his mom’s credit card) a leftover piece of hotdog from his favorite competitive eater. David must find a way to earn the money to pay his mom back before she discovers what he did. David feels like a failure and thinks the only thing he is good at is competitive eating. On top of training for the big eating competition, David has to take care of his brother Mal (who has autism). David is very good at finding ways to help his brother deal with the world and their relationship is one of the best parts of this book.


The competitive eating parts of the book are rather gross at times, but young readers will probably enjoy that. At the beginning of the book, David goes to a frat house (he sees a bunch of college students drinking) and participates in an eating contest. Overall, it’s a fun book with some heartwarming moments, if you can get past some vomiting and gross overeating. 🙂


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All’s Faire in Middle School


All's Faire in Middle School - Victoria Jamieson

Audience: Middle School

Format: Hardcover/Library


Imogene! Come down from that tree!

– first sentence



Imogene (Impy) works at a Renaissance Faire and has been homeschooled her entire life. She decides that her quest to become a knight will be attending middle school. The story realistically portrays the difficulties and challenges girls face at this time in their lives. Impy makes some questionable choices, but she eventually realizes that everyone makes mistakes and she finds ways to atone. She has difficulty understanding the cliques and double language kids use and wonders why girls say mean things when they are supposed to be your friend.


This is a great book for middle schoolers and anyone who enjoyed Roller Girl by the same author. I’ve noticed some reviewers question the content. At one point the girls are reading a romance novel that they hide in Impy’s backpack. At home, Impy is looking at the book and writes the word “sex” in her notebook. Impy’s mother starts to have “the talk” with her, but Impy changes the subject quickly and it never comes up again. This kind of stuff happens in real life and there is nothing inappropriate, but parents should decide for themselves.


In my opinion, the positive messages and relatable real-life story make this book a must-read.

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A Curse so Dark and Lonely


A Curse So Dark and Lonely - Brigid Kemmerer

Audience: Young Adult

Format: e-Book/Library


There is blood under my fingernails.

– first sentence



This is a fabulous retelling of Beauty & the Beast. In Emberfall, the prince and everyone who lives on the castle grounds are cursed to live the same season over and over again. Towards the end of the season, Rhen (the prince) becomes a beast. Over the years, he has killed many villagers, but his captain of the guard (Grey) has learned how to keep the remaining people safe. As in the original, the only way to break the curse is for someone to fall in love with Rhen. Grey brings girls from the modern world to the castle in an attempt to find someone who will break the curse. One day he ends up kidnapping Harper. Harper isn’t like any of the other girls Grey kidnapped over the years (of course). But she also isn’t your typical “Belle” – she has cerebral palsy and she loves horses more than books.


Chapters are told in alternating viewpoints between Rhen and Harper and it’s fun to see what they’re thinking about how the other one behaves. There is adventure, intrigue, and  a great deal of violence. There are forces outside the castle grounds that threaten Emberfall. Harper helps Rhen and Grey come up with solutions. She is feisty and smart and doesn’t give up easily. 


I loved this story and the end was surprising even though I thought I knew how it would go. I am looking forward to the next book.



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Kill Creek by Scott Thomas


Kill Creek - Scott Thomas, Bernard Setaro Clark

Audience: Adult

Format: Audiobook/Owned


“No house is born bad.”

– first sentence



I listened to this book for Halloween Bingo at the end of September. I’ve been swamped with school, work, and trying to get settled in my new house so I haven’t had time to write any reviews.


I enjoyed this book. It was a slow build and I kept thinking something was going to happen, but the story kept taking unexpected turns. After all this time, that’s all I have. *shrugs*

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9/1/19: Ghost stories
9/2/19: Genre: Horror
9/3/19: Creepy Crawlies
9/4/19: Amateur Sleuth (not on my card)

9/5/19: American Horror Story
9/6/19: Dystopian Hellscape (not on my card)
9/7/19: Fear Street

9/8/19: Black Cat
9/9/19: Relics and Curiosities
9/10/19: A Grimm Tale  (not on my card)

9/11/19: Stranger Things
9/12/19: Creepy Carnivals (not on my card)

9/13/19: Country House Mystery (not on my card)
9/14/19: Classic Horror (not on my card)
9/15/19: Supernatural
9/16/19: Psych (not on my card)

9/17/19: Darkest London (not on my card)
9/18/19: Cozy Mystery (not on my card)
9/19/19: Southern Gothic (not on my card)

9/20/19: Read by Flashlight or Candlelight (not on my card)
9/21/19: Modern Noir (not on my card)

9/22/19: Spellbound
9/23/19: Dark Academia
9/24/19: Deadlands

9/25/19: Slasher Stories

9/26/19: In the Dark, Dark Woods

9/27/19: It was a Dark & Stormy Night

9/28/19: Paint It Black

9/29/19: Truly Terrifying (not on my card)

9/30/19: Locked Room Mystery (not on my card)

10/1/19: Raven/Free Space

10/2/19: Full Moon (not on my card)

10/3/19: King of Fear (not on my card)

10/4/19: Vampires

10/5/19: Halloween (not on my card)

10/6/19: Sleepy Hollow (not on my card)

10/7/19: Diverse Voices (not on my card)

10/8/19: Demons (not on my card)

10/9/19: International Woman of Mystery (not on my card)

10/10/19: Film at 11 (not on my card)

10/11/19: Cryptozoologist (not on my card)

10/12/19: Stone Cold Horror

10/13/19: Baker Street Irregulars (not on my card)

10/14/19: Romantic Suspense (not on my card)

10/15/19: New Release (not on my card)

10/16/19: Monsters

10/17/19: 13 (not on my card)

10/18/19: Modern Masters of Horror

10/19/19: Genre: Mystery (not on my card)

10/20/19: Classic Noir (not on my card)

10/21/19: Serial Spree Killer(not on my card)

10/23/19: Aliens (not on my card)

10/24/19: Doomsday (not on my card)

10/25/19: Gothic





Currently Reading:


Zero Day by Ezekiel Boone

Skitter by Ezekiel Boone

The Hatching by Ezekiel Boone

Kill Creek by Scott Thomas






The Shuddering by Ania Ahlborn for American Horror Story

Let Me In by John Ajvide Lindqvist for Vampires

City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab for Ghost Stories

Cold Moon Over Babylon by Malcolm McDowell for Terror in a Small Town


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Cold Moon Over Babylon by Michael McDowell


Cold Moon Over Babylon - Michael McDowell



Audience: Adult

Format: Audiobook/Owned


One hot afternoon in July of 1965, Jim Larkin and his wife JoAnn were slowly paddling their small green boat upstream on the Styx river that drains the northwestern corner of the Florida panhandle.

– first sentence



Well, things only go downhill for the Larkin family after that. In the present, they are barely holding on to the farm and the blueberry crop keeps dwindling. After Margaret is murdered, things get even worse. This victim is not going to rest easy and she is determined to make someone pay. But… who killed her and why?


This book is well-written, suspenseful, and scary. I enjoyed the character development and trying to figure out who the killer was. I also liked seeing Margaret Larkin’s ghost terrifying people. The final death is the best, well deserved, and perfect in the sense of irony and justice.


Well done and enjoyable. The middle was a tad slower, but the last quarter had me on the edge of my seat.


I read this one for the Terror in a Small Town square.

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Let Me In by John Ajvide Lindqvist


Let Me In - -Macmillan Audio-, John Ajvide Lindquist, Steven Pacey


Audience: Adult

Format: Audiobook/Owned


Blackeberg. It makes you think of coconut-frosted cookies, maybe drugs.

– first sentence


Let’s see, the narrator was amazing and I enjoyed listening to him. The story was creepy and the vampires were scary as hell. The human characters were highly flawed; there are no heroes in this story. Oskar is bullied relentlessly and puts up with it until he meets the new girl next door. The boys who bully him deal with difficult home lives. There are other characters who drink together and that’s pretty much it. There is also pedophilia, abuse, adult bullies, and parents who don’t seem interested in what their kids are doing. I would say this takes a dark and unflinching look at the more disturbing realities we try not to think about.


The reason I didn’t really like the book is because of that darkness. I’m better with stories that have less of the realistic evil and more of the supernatural I guess. I’m glad the book is over and eager to move on to something less disturbing.


I read this for the Vampire square.

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City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab


City of Ghosts - Victoria Schwab



Audience: Middle Grade

Format: Kindle/Owned


People think that ghosts only come out at night, or on Halloween, when the world is dark and the walls are thin.

-First sentence


When Cassidy was drowning, she was saved by a ghost named Jacob. Ever since then, she can pull back the Veil and enter the spirit world. She can also see ghosts, and Jacob is her best friend. Her parents write books about spirits and they are going to host a TV show about the world’s most haunted places. They all travel to Edinburgh, Scotland where graveyards, castles, and passageways are filled with all types of ghosts. At the hotel, Cass meets a girl like her who can also see ghosts.


Cass is a strong, brave girl and Jacob is loyal and brave. I love their interactions and how her parents think Jacob is her invisible friend. Overall, the story moves quickly, is a little scary and has a lot of heart. I enjoyed reading this one and I think middle-grade readers will love it. It has a few scary parts, but nothing that will be too much for the middle-grade audience.


I’m looking forward to reading the sequel and finding out more about Jacob, Cassidy, and the next haunted place.


I read this for the Ghost Stories space.

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