Weekly Roundup, October 23-27, 2017

Hello there! Happy Saturday! What wonderfully spooky (mis)adventures did you get into during the last week? I hope it’s been great. We’ve had a fantastic time here during the last full week of our deliciously creepy October celebration. Missed something? That’s fine, I’m here to help. As you wind your way through the weekend, please feel free to check out what our team of ghosts and ghouls have presented for your reading enfrightenment! (This is the last roundup before Halloween, humor me.)


Monday means it’s time for someone to squee about their very favorite things. Merrin, our salty book club president, took us on a guided tour of the things that she loves best right now. What are those things? Since quoting the piece worked so well last time, I shall do it again: “an author’s first foray into comics, blessings galore, an Emmy-winning actress bringing a dystopia to life with her voice alone, Star Wars meeting hockey, and Jurassic Park in the flesh! Kind of. Curious? Read on for more!


Tuesday gave us a new installment of Chain Reaction, a series in which Carey M. Ballard takes us through several stories that are connected by a central theme. Since it’s October and we’re having way too much fun with the ghosties and ghoulies, Carey chose to focus this month’s edition on vampire fiction. Typically three stories are featured. You’re in for a treat this time, however. This week, Carey has doubled the list, and then some. She features stories from the super serious (the absolutely gorgeous film, Only Lovers Left Alive) to the fabulously satirical (What We Do In the Shadows, which is the source of this post’s cover image) and everything in between. A must-read for the vampire fiend in your life.

Tuesday also gave us a new installment in Sound Off! This week’s first offering was Geostorm. Our Sound Off! editor, J.L. Gribble, was the only brave soul who made it out to watch this. What did she think? You might be surprised. She makes a very astute observation regarding disaster films: “At their core, disaster movies aren’t really about the disasters. They’re about the people we’re following through the disasters. If we can’t connect with them, the movie is already toast.” Does Geostorm succeed? You’ll have to read on for yourself.


Wednesday gave us another double header! Kicking things off, Kendra Merritt shared a delightful post about her favorite Halloween tradition: the costumes. You must not miss this! Kendra included some charming personal photographs of costumes from her childhood and several recent shots of her family’s excellent Halloween efforts. It’s not often that we get a chance to do truly warm, feel-good posts, but this proves that when given the task, our writers can tackle any subject with gusto.

On Wednesday afternoon, our extremely fortunate Editor-in-Chic Shara White shared her thoughts on Professor Marston and the Wonder Women in our second Sound Off! of the week. I say that Shara is fortunate because many of us want to see this film but haven’t had the chance due to it being such a limited release. Did you get a chance to see it? Come find out whether you agree with Shara. Haven’t watched it yet? Live vicariously through this spoiler-free review of Wonder Woman’s fascinating origin.


Nancy O’Toole Meservier kicked off Thursday with five very compelling reasons to check out Diana Rowland’s White Trash Zombie series. Personally, I was convinced! I’ll be picking them up soon. If you’re an urban fantasy fan who’s in the market for something new to read, this may be just what you’ve been looking for.

Continuing Thursday, Kelly McCarty took on a task that I myself attempted earlier this year: she read and reviewed Nick Cutter’s truly horrifying novel, The Deep. Kelly devours books with a gusto that it is rare and admirable. I myself was not able to read every single word of this novel (I skimmed the last few chapters). Kelly did it. Will she consider any of Cutter’s novels in the future? Click the link above to find out. Warning: The Deep contains an upsetting outcome for some dogs who did nothing more than be very good dogs indeed. If this kind of thing bothers you, please skip this book.


Friday’s first post brought on a discussion for our October book club selection, Jac Jemc’s The Grip of It. Have you started the book but not finished? Use the rest of the weekend to find your way to the end, and then come join us in our discussion. It’s not a long novel (the paperback is a mere 273 pages), so we hope that you’ll join us soon.

Our second Friday offering was a look back at one of my personal favorite childhood television shows: Are You Afraid of the Dark? Our guest writer, Jessica McHugh, wrote a delightful love letter to that fantastic Nickelodeon classic and reminds us of some of the best episodes it had presented.

Book Club

As mentioned above, our discussion of Jac Jemc’s The Grip of It is up and ready for your reading pleasure. I’m sure that there will be spoilers, so if you’re thinking of reading the book and haven’t yet, proceed with caution. Did you read it? (Spoiler alert, you should, but you don’t have to take my…wait, LeVar Burton got in trouble for saying that. Better not go there.)

Our November selection is The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. It’s a gorgeous looking book, isn’t it? If you’ve not read this one, you’re in for a treat. Fun fact! Morgenstern began playing with this novel during National Novel Writing Month (or NaNoWriMo, as it is affectionately known). Speaking of which…

National Novel Writing Month

You’ve probably heard of this by now, but if you haven’t, here’s a link to NaNoWriMo’s page for more information. Are you an intrepid writer, ready to take on the task of working on your newest novel? Maybe you’re working on your first novel? Either way, may you find the inspiration you need, the energy to get it done, and the serenity to write badly, because no first drafts are ever good. Need help? You’re in luck! Contributor Venessa Giunta wrote a very helpful post last year to assist you in your journey.

And that’s that! Halloween is coming up in a few more days, so our romp through the October Country is coming to an end. I hope you’ve enjoyed this month’s selections, and will continue to enjoy the last few days of the season on Monday and Tuesday. Have fun trick or treating, kids!

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