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Posts Tagged ‘Roald Dahl’

The spooky season was a bootiful reading month for me! I completed six books in the month of October. As of today, I have read 57 books throughout 2022. I have surpassed my Goodreads goal of 50 books, and I still have two more months left of the year with plenty of terrific titles to tackle. What an awesome reading year for me!

Nonfiction Selection

Fear Itself: The Early Works of Stephen King, edited by Tim Underwood and Chuck Miller, is a fascinating collection of literary criticism focused on Stephen King’s earlier works (short stories and novels) prior to the publication of Christine. There are 9 essays, an introduction by Peter Straub, a forward by Stephen King, and an afterword by George Romero. Anyone who is a fan of King’s writing and has enjoyed reading Salem’s Lot (my personal favorite), The Shining, Carrie, The Stand, Firestarter, The Dead Zone, and Cujo will enjoy going

back in time and discovering why Stephen King became a popular writer and a household name for horror fans.

I especially enjoyed the introduction by Peter Straub and the afterword by George Romero. Stephen King’s forward is also wonderful because it gives insight into his struggles of becoming a writer and how he achieved brand name status as a horror writer. Stephen King is my absolute favorite author, so I enjoyed taking a trip down memory lane to learn more about the start of his writing career and his early works from the perspectives of other writers as well as the impact his work has had on both literature and film. This was a four-star read for me.

#Read21in21 Challenge

I read three children’s literature selections this month, two middle-grade selections about witches and a young adult novel centered on clowns in a small town. All three books were fantastic in their own way.

The Witches by Roald Dahl is a wicked good time. An 8-year old boy, who lives with his Norweigian grandmother after the death of his parents, narrates this delightfully dark tale. The fantasy novel is set partly in England and partly in Norway and follows the young boy and his grandmother as they encounter witches on their summer holiday. The vile and disgusting witches despise children and hatch a plan to get rid of them everywhere. This middle-grade selection is entertaining, terrifying at times, but excudes a great deal of heart. I adored it and gave it 5 stars.

Clown in a Cornfield by Adam Cesare is a young adult novel with spooky season feels. Quinn Maybrook, a high school senier, is uprooted from Philadelphia when her father takes a job as a family doctor in the small, seemingly quiet, town of Kettle Springs. Quinn and her father embark on a fresh start and begin adapting to rural life. Quinn has even made a few friends at school. Unfortunately, her new friends have objectionable reputations and a turbulent history with the town’s elders. Small town secrets, deep-rooted grudges, and death-dealing clowns make for a terrifying tale. 4 stars!

The Power of Poppy Pendle by Natasha Lowe is a magical middle-grade adventure. Poppy happens to be an amazing witch, who loves to bake and is quite awesome at it. Her desserts delight everyone except her parents, who only want Poppy to concentrate on witchcraft and carry on the legacy of her great-grandmother Mabel. The only problem is Poppy hates magic. Since her parents refuse to let her bake along with studying magic, she makes a dastardly decision that could cost her everything and everyone she loves. This story is warm-hearted, at times heartbreaking and dark, but full of charm. The book includes baking tips from Poppy and recipes which I would love to try in the future. 5 stars for Poppy Pendle!

Chills, Thrills, & Kills Book Club

Kill Creek by Scott Thomas is an AWESOME selection for the spooky season. It has all the ingredients to keep a horror fan engaged from beginning to end, Gothic vibes, a haunted house, and a pervasive evil that hungrily awaits those who dare to cross Kill Creek’s threshold.

Four esteemed horror writers receive an invitation to spend Halloween night in an abandoned house that is purported to be haunted. All four writers, reluctantly accept the invitation, hoping the publicity will bolster their careers.

Unfortunately, they are not prepared for what will greet them and the aftermath of that one meeting. Kill Creek is a slow burn that builds tension in the most satisfying way, leading the reader to a gratifying conclusion that stays with you long after you have finished the book. I gave this brilliant horror novel 5 stars.

Year of King

Kelsi and I chose Needful Things for October. This delightful story was a reread for me, and I was thrilled to revisit it. Leland Gaunt, the mysterious but charming proprietor of Needful Things, sets up shop in Castle Rock. His store offers the most curious items for sale. Sadly for the residents of Castle Rock, the treasures they purchase cost them more than money. Their quiet little town will never be the same when Leland Gaunt is finished doing business with them.

Needful Things is one of my favorite novels written by Stephen King. I love the well-developed characters, especially Sheriff Alan Pangborn and his cunning adversary, Leland Gaunt. There is more to the story than residents playing pranks on one another. It is a story deep-seated in greed, hypocrisy, and the harmful effects of selling one’s soul to fulfill one’s deepest desires. Needful Things is a definite 5-star read for me.

Kesli and I had a devilish good time discussing both the novel and the film adaptation of Needful Things on November 6th. Dear reader, you can check out the recording on Kelsi’s YouTube channel (see below).

November is well underway, and I am participating in three readathons. I am currently reading Kilmeny of the Orchard by L.M. Mongomery for #Read21in21. My book club selection for November is Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman. Kelsi and I will be reading The Dead Zone for our Year of King project. We will have a live discussion about the novel and movie on Sunday, 11 December at 12:00 PM CT. Last but not least, my nonfiction selection this month is Maud: The Life of L.M. Montgomery by Harry Bruce. 

My sister Rachel and I are reading the last chapter of A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose by Eckhart Tolle. This Wednesday evening we will be discussing Chapter 10, “A New Earth.” Rachel and I have had such a blast buddy reading A New Earth that we are planning to read another book together which we will start in January.

As usual, I am looking forward to everything I have planned to read in November. To see my complete November TBR, follow me on YouTube at Kat’s Novel Adventures (see below). To see my current book reviews or books I have read in the past, follow me on Goodreads at Katherine Loyacano. Happiness!

“Books are the plane, and the train, and the road. They are the destination and the journey. They are home.” ~ Anna Quindlen

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