The most magical month is here, the month of snow and rain. A month that every book lover hopes that their bookish wishes are granted because they have been oh so good this year! Well, this week I left nothing to chance, I hoped on a train and went in search for lovely ghostly scary reads to set me up for the wet and gloomy evenings ahead. My trip lead me to my ‘local’ Waterstones, and oh my gosh was I spoilt for choice in what was waiting for me upon their shelves! (Insert favourite gif)
*Cue a wrapped up bundle of excited energy running to the first floor horror section* There was where I found the most glorious bookish bounty, so many King’s and Hill’s worth of my reading but I wanted to delve into books by authors that I have never read before. Apparently, this has been a reoccurring theme for this half of the year. Without any further a do, let me introduce you to my December book haul *gazes with awe.*
Firstly, we have The Small Hand; A Ghost Story by Susan Hill, it grabbed my attention because it’s blue and the cover is just amazing, I felt it was very haunting, just what I was looking for!
Late one summer evening, antiquarian bookseller Adam Snow is returning from a client visit when he takes a wrong turn. He stumbles across a derelict Edwardian house, and compelled by curiosity, approaches the door. Standing before the entrance, he feels the unmistakable sensation of a small cold hand creeping into his own, ‘as if a child had taken hold of it’.
At first he is merely puzzled by the odd incident but then begins to suffer attacks of fear and panic, and is visited by nightmares. He is determined to learn more ‘about the house and its once-magnificent, now overgrown garden but when he does so, he receives further, increasingly sinister, visits from the small hand.
This read has been quoted as being “beautifully written….. highly recommended”, I was completely sold! Held onto it tightly; it was the only one on the shelf. Also, why doesn’t Waterstones have baskets? I needed a basket on this (every) particular trip. If you’re reading this Waterstones Cardiff take note!
I couldn’t just walk out there and then, Susan Hill would have been so lonely. Have you ever been the new book on the shelf? It can be a scary place to be! So, a book companion was needed! There, sitting all proud on his shelf was the one and only Mr Joe Hill. I swear I could hear the book call to me “take me too”, so that is exactly what I did. I have read Joe Hill’s work before in the form of ‘Heart Shaped Box’ and I was completely blown away by the creepiness. Out of kindness, 20th Century Ghosts joined my first pick. The blub you ask? Well here it is:
“Imogene is young, beautiful, kisses like a movie star and knows everything about every film ever made. She’s also dead, the legendary ghost of the Rosebud Theater.
Arthur Roth is a lonely kid with a head full of big ideas and a gift for getting his ass kicked. It’s hard to make friends when you’re the only inflatable boy in town.
Francis is unhappy, picked on; he doesn’t have a life, a hope, a chance. Francis was human once, but that’s behind him now. John Finney is in trouble. The kidnapper locked him in a basement, a place stained with the blood of half a dozen other murdered children. With him, in his subterranean cell, is an antique phone, long since disconnected…but it rings at night, anyway, with calls from the dead…”
How ghostly incredible is that blurb? *Picks jaw up from floor*, this is when it turns messy people. It’s like trigger happy but with books!
Drumroll please! Guess where I found the next two books, I see you rolling those eyes! I found another two beauties in the horror section The Lingering by SJI Holliday and The Coffin Path by Katherine Clements. I can’t even say that they were close book friends, alphabetically they were on separate shelves. I just knew that they were going to compliment one another, seeing as (there’s a theme here) scary ghost stories to do with spooky houses! The Lingering I’ve been meaning to get my little book grabby hands on for ages, especially after reading some unbelievably amazing reviews and blog posts about it! Yes, yes I know ‘give me the blurbs’
“Maybe you’ve heard tales about Scarcross Hall, the house on the old coffin path that winds from village to moor top. They say there’s something up here, something evil.
Mercy Booth isn’t afraid. The moors and Scarcross are her home and lifeblood. But, beneath her certainty, small things are beginning to trouble her. Three ancient coins missing from her father’s study, the shadowy figure out by the gatepost, an unshakeable sense that someone is watching.
When a stranger appears seeking work, Mercy reluctantly takes him in. As their stories entwine, this man will change everything. She just can’t see it yet.”
The Lingering by SJI Holliday
*Note: for a limited time only, The Lingering is only 98p for kindle versions. That’s the biggest bargain you’ll get this week!
“Married couple Jack and Ali Gardiner move to a self-sufficient commune in the English Fens, desperate for fresh start. The local village is known for the witches who once resided there and Rosalind House, where the commune has been established, is a former psychiatric home, with a disturbing history.
When Jack and Ali arrive, a chain of unexpected and unexplained events is set off, and it becomes clear that they are not all that they seem. As the residents become twitchy, and the villagers suspicious, events from the past come back to haunt them, and someone is seeking retribution…”
The Lingering has been described as a locked room mystery with a few hidden ghosties! Christmas eve read? I think so!
Book number five, was Alys, Always by Harriet Lane, this read I did not find in the horror section but rather on the ground floor amongst the fictional beauties. This is categorised into the psychological thriller genre. That’s kind of like horror but probably worse!
“Frances is a thirty-something lowly sub-editor, but her routine, colourless existence is disrupted one winter evening when she happens upon the aftermath of a car crash and hears the last words of the driver, Alys Kyte.
When Alys’s family makes contact in an attempt to find closure, Frances is given a tantalising glimpse of a very different world: one of privilege and possibility. The relationships she builds with the Kytes will have an impact on her own life, both professionally and personally, as Frances dares to wonder whether she might now become a player in her own right …”
All of these lovely (whispers lovely) books are available to buy now at Waterstones and Amazon! These would be the best gifts for your horror / thriller loving bookworm in your life… you know i’m right! You can thank me later!
Also, I am saddened to say that this will be my last book haul for a while. My New years resolution (in partnership with Rachel Read It) is to try not to buy any books in 2019 and to read all books we already own, as well as blog tour / review books. No loopholes, no excuses and no borrowing. Although, we are audible members, so we do get a book a month! I will be extra careful with that credit.
Have you read any of the titles in my December book haul? What one(s)? Opinion? Are they on your Christmas wish-list? Let me know!