Top Ten Tuesday : Halloween Reads


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme where every Tuesday we look at a particular topic for discussion and use various (or more to the point ten) bookish examples to demonstrate that particular topic.  Top Ten Tuesday (created and hosted by  The Broke and Bookish) is now being hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl and future week’s topics can be found here.   This week’s topic:

Halloween Freebie

It’s been a little while since I managed to fit in a Top Ten Tuesday but with Halloween just waiting round the corner it seems the perfect time to recommend some recent reads that would be perfect for this time of year. So, let’s take a look.

Cackle by Rachel Harrison –  a very easy to read story that I raced to complete mostly because I was never keen to put it down and always keen to pick it back up.  A book about self realisation, coming to terms with who you are, self love and worth that includes magical elements and curses.

Cackle 2

A Dowry of Blood by ST Gibson – this is undoubtedly a dark, sexy, romantic, gothic, well told, twisty, retelling of the story of Dracula by one of his brides. I loved the writing and thought Constanta was a wonderful character. An absorbing and hypnotic read.


Old Country by Matt Query –  this is such an unusual kind of horror story that it’s absolutely compelling and I could barely put it down. Plus creepy much!


Daisy Darker by Alice Feeney – I picked this one up and was immediately intrigued with the storytelling voice. There’s an almost ethereal feel to the way the narrative is delivered and this is strengthened by the unusual setting and the dysfunctional family that we are introduced to.  Feeney starts out with a captivating hook, she then lets us run on the line enjoying the freedom to explore the remote setting and the histrionics of the Darker family before reeling us in to a climatic and dramatic grand finale.


Black Mouth by Ronald Malfi –  dark and compelling horror that held me bewitched with it’s ghosts and fascinating characters.  I’m not a horror aficionado but this is definitely my kind of scary catnip.  It’s not a blood soaked slasher so much as an intriguing look at something sinister, a look at monsters and the shape they come in and more importantly that truth is quite often stranger than fiction


The Path of Thorns by AG Slatter – this is the gothic, dark, fairytale that I’ve been waiting for and I loved it without a single reservation.  Think Jane Eyre but with less a focus on the two central characters and the love they develop and more a tale of revenge, difficult promises to keep, witchcraft and much more.


Nettle and Bone by T Kingfisher – loved this book so much.  It’s full of everything that I enjoy, it’s got elements of old fairy tales but as the same time feels unique.  It takes us on a wild ride to a far away kingdom.  There are princesses in distress, people who can talk to the dead, a dog that came back to life, amazing characters and the beginnings of a sweet romance.


Black Tide by KC Jones – it pulled me in very quickly and had me turning the pages so fast that I read it in almost record breaking time.  The writing was snappy and the tension was cranked up.  A quick one night stand turns into the strangest survival story.  This is a slice of life, snapshot of a story that literally takes place at the beach and is packed with horror and nightmare ish creatures


Insomnia by Sarah Pinborough – It’s a perfect jumble of crazy mixed up, spiralling out of control, sleepless insanity.  Every time I thought I had a handle on what was going on it turned out I was wrong and I just love the way that the ending is totally out there


The Paris Apartment by Lucy Foley – a locked room mystery with plenty of potential suspects but this one had a slightly different tone. I’m trying to put my finger on why this one feels slightly different but it’s eluding me somehow.  I think possibly because the mystery does have outside influences that broaden the story a little and it definitely moves into some much deeper territory along the way



“Listen to them, the children of the night. What music they make!”

This week’s Top Ten from the Broke and the Bookish is your top ten books to read during Halloween?

Well,  I’m not sure I have ten so I thought I’d break this down into five reads that I’ve actually read and five I would like to read:

Okay, from the title you may have guessed (No.1):


  1. Dracula by Bram Stoker – I love this book.  Good old fashioned gothic horror
  2. The Shining by Stephen King – just read this and frankly it gave me the heebie jeebies
  3. The Woman in Black by Susan Hill
  4. Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury – such a great, creepy, spooky, compelling story
  5. We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson with the ever so strange and maybe a little bit sinister Merricat

Want to read:

  1. Let the Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist
  2. Rosemary’s Baby by Ira Levin
  3. American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis – I think I might be too scared to read this one
  4. House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewsk – I really want to read this but think it could be one of those books that takes quite a while!  It’s huge!
  5. At the Mountains of Madness by HP Lovecraft

Do you like things that go bump in the night?