This week Spooky Sunday looks at Horror Stories by E Nesbit, an author best known for her children’s classics such as The Railway Children and Five Children and It. This is also the first short story collection I’ve tackled for Spooky Sunday and it’s interesting to see how this more concise medium tackles the task of creating a sense of creepiness. But can an author best known for enchanting children craft a truly spooky story? Let’s find out!
This week Spooky Sunday tackles a real life ghost story in Neil Spring’s fictionalisation of the investigation into Borley Rectory: The Ghost Hunters. Set over the first half of the twentieth century the novel follows Sarah Grey and her employer, paranormal researcher Harry Price as they investigate the place known as ‘the most haunted house in England’. Does this novel live up to the spooky reputation of its real life inspiration? Let’s find out.
Yes, I know it’s Tuesday but seeing as we get five whole Spooky Sundays this October I think we can deal with one Spooky Tuesday. To kick off this year I read one of the pillars of the genre, Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
Telling the story of an ancient Transylvanian vampire who tries to make it in the big city and the group of meddling kids determined to stop him Dracula is one of the best known horror stories out there. But is the original anything like our pop cultural perceptions and does a novel that spooked readers over hundred years ago still hold some scares in the modern day? Let’s find out!
SPOILER WARNING: Very vague and minor spoilers
As an avid Agatha Christie fan (as evidenced from my twelve thousand recommendations in our Roger Ackroyd post) I am slowly collecting all of her bibliography and even more slowly making my way through. In this series I’ll hopefully cover the many high and occasional lows of Christie’s career while also reducing that massive section if my TBR made up by her works.
To start off with we tackle Evil Under the Sun a beach themed murder mystery packed with everything you could ever want. Love triangles! Witchcraft! Drug dealers! Are any of these actually relevant to the main crime? Find out below!
SPOILER WARNING: Very mild spoilers (no revealing whodunnit)
By Michelle Nathan
A hearty hello, young lords and ladies! Over the weekend I had the pleasure of going to see AUSTENTATIOUS – an improv comedy show in the style of Jane Austen, where the plot line is based solely on title suggestions from the audience, making every show completely unique. I’ve been trying to go to one of these shows for over a year now, so when the stars finally aligned on Sunday my expectations were high and I could barely contain my excitement. I was slightly worried, however, as I know that improv comedy can be very hit or miss, depending on the style of humour (and, frankly, how talented the actors are!) but the show was absolutely incredible. I can’t remember the last time I laughed that much while watching a live performance, and by the time the cast were taking their final bows me and my friends were already talking about booking tickets for their next London show.
By Michelle Nathan
Hi friends! This month I am reviewing WHEN DIMPLE MET RISHI, a tale of romance, comedy and some carefully orchestrated destiny centring around two young, first generation Indian-Americans whose parents have plotted an arranged set up between the two. But, in the vein of all classic rom-coms, only one of them knows about the arrangement, while the other is initially completely oblivious. Miscommunication, hijinks and all of the cutesy rom-com tropes in the world are afoot in this charming story about young love, chasing your dreams and following your heart. Hope you enjoy!
We’re back! After a couple of months off the book club returns with our first poetry collection, Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur. As usual there are some.. differing opinions, let’s get straight into it!
By Michelle Nathan
Hello my lovely book buds! This month I have decided to write a review of a book that I absolutely fell in love with and stormed through in about two days (almost missing my train stop on three different occasions.) WING JONES by Katherine Webber. Hope you enjoy!
SPOILER WARNING: This review contains very minor spoilers.
Da da daah! Tie In Tuesday is back!
I’ve been a little less than active on the blogging front lately, but super active active on the reading front, so I’ve built up a small backlog of tie ins for review. Thus, I’m pairing these two together, for, despite being written thirty years apart, they share many similarities.
I read twelve books in January, which is a personal best, with an average rating of 4.5 stars – so it was an extremely good reading month for me. Below are mini reviews for each book (excluding book club picks and ones with longer reviews to come).
Rip Van Winkle and Other Stories by Washington Irving
This is a collection of short stories, each of which is supposedly based on an element of Dutch-American folklore. My least favourite story was actually the title one, I felt it was quite anecdotal and a little bit misogynist – we’re supposed to feel sorry for Rip because his wife is always mad at him, but if he could be bothered to help around the house she wouldn’t be! I enjoyed ‘The Legend of Sleepy Hollow’ the most as this was the story that felt most true to the folkloric nature of the stories, whilst also providing a ‘rational’ explanation. The folklore aspect was definitely my favourite part as I haven’t read many American legends before.