Sunday, August 28, 2016

Endless Summer

This may be my final book summer post, but judging by the titles that are hitting the bookshelves this fall we get to hold on to that summer feeling a little longer:

The Cabin by Natasha Preston // September 6 
Teens, cabin, murder… yes you probably heard this a 100 times. But there's a reason the trope is so popular: it's fun! The Cabin centers around Mackenzie, a high school senior, who just wants to spend the weekend with her friends in a remote cabin. What could possibly go wrong?  The friends' first night at the cabin ends in tragedy when two of the teens are found dead. And since there are no signs of a forced entry or struggle, suspicion turns to the survivors…  The Cabin is escapist horror fun at it's best: a fast paced, easy read that'll keep you guessing – and sometimes that is all a good book needs to be.

For fans of: Gretchen McNeil's Ten; Fear Street

Pasadena by Sherri L. Smith // September 13
Some call it an accident, others believe it's a suicide, but only Jude knows that there is more to it when her best friend Maggie is found dead in a swimming pool …so she starts digging to get to the truth. But the closer she gets, the more she discovers about herself, as Maggie's friends and family are  not the only ones with buried secrets. The contrast between the sunny and glamorous southern California setting, and the gritty tone and dark nature of the story make it so much more than just another young adult mystery.  Pasadena is a brilliant  homage to the great noir stories of Los Angeles, and an equally stylish, chilling, and honest story that you won't regret picking up.

For fans of: Veronica Mars

The Atlas of Cursed Places: Skeleton Tower by Vanessa Acton // October 1
When Jason's family moves to a historic lighthouse, it doesn't take long until strange things begin to happen. The sudden disappearance of the former caretakers, accidents that might not be so accidental,  and the discovery of a weird diary, all lead to the same conclusion: The lighthouse is cursed! At only a 104 pages, it isn't the most intricate story, but much like The Cabin it's simply fun. There is also a nostalgia factor to it, as the style is quite reminiscent of The Hardy Boys mysteries with some Goosebumps thrown in, and you can't really go wrong with that. 

For fans of: The Hardy Boys; Goosebumps

Peace, Love, and Lobsters

Advanced review copies provided by Net Galley

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Summer Lovin'

If there's one thing I usually try to avoid it's young adult romance. Maybe I'm simply too old to care about teens falling in love–or maybe I just don't really care for romance in general. There are, however, a few exceptions and most of them come in the form of anthologies

I wasn't really familiar with most of the authors featured in Summer Days and Summer Nights, but I am a huge fan of Francesca Lia Block's Weetzie Bat (another exception), and seeing ner name on the cover was enough to make me curious.

I admit, I read Block's story “Sick Pleasure” first, and it definitely is my favorite out of the twelve short stories featured in the collection. Block's autobiographical account is not a big fairy tale, or a thrilling romance. It is a simple story you probably heard a 100 times already, but her equally sweet and gloomy perspective, and the way she threats Los Angeles as a setting, make it stand out in the best way possible.

Others that stood out to me are “Last Stand at the Cinegore” by Libba Bray and “The Map of Tiny Perfect Things” by Lev Grossman. Bray's “Last Stand at the Cinegore” might not be the best out of the stories, but I am a sucker for campy horror, and this tale of a cursed movie was right up my alley. And “The Map of Tiny Perfect Things”, a clever take on Groundhog Day, is just one of those stories that really makes you stop and reminds you to enjoy the little things that make endless summer days so special.

Overall, I really enjoyed the anthology as a whole. There were two or three stories I just skimmed over, but I think that's going to be the case with any anthology–especially if it combines a wide range of styles. So if you haven't read it yet, check out Summer Days and Summer Nights. It's the perfect book for those last few lazy summer days.

Peace, Love, and Lobsters

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Book Shopping

Book Summer would not be complete without a post on Out Of Print, 'cause no matter if you're back-to-school shopping (they do have amazing  totes and pencil pouches!), on a mission to show the world your favorite book, or just want to do some good (every purchase sends a book to a community in need)  …Out of Print is the place to go.  

Here's a look at their new "Miss Peregrine's Home for Perculiar Children" collection and some of my all time favorites (how cute is that Nancy Drew sweater?):

Which one is your favorite?  

Peace, Love, and Lobsters

Sunday, August 7, 2016

My Best Friend's Exorcism

Between the mind-blowingly awesome Stranger Things, and the less mind-blowing (but still kind of entertaining) Dead of Summer, I found myself craving even more 80s horror. So, I googled "horror novels set in the 80s" and found My Best Friend's Exorcism. 

The year is 1988, Abby and Gretchen have been best friends forever. Both are a little nerdy, love E.T., and the roller-rink…but all that changes after a little experimentation with LSD goes wrong and Gretchen begins to act strange. While it's not uncommon for childhood friends to drift apart in high school, Abby knows that this is something more…something terrifying.  And there is only one possible explanation: Gretchen in possessed.

Author Grady Hendrix has a unique talent to blend the heartwarming with the disturbing …and still make you laugh at the same time. My Best Friend's Excorcism is chilling, but not a straight up horror novel. It is heart-warning,  but not just another coming of age story. It's a high school drama, but not in the least bit juvenile. It is amusing, but never silly, and the result is a story that keeps surprising you on every page, because you never quite know which direction it will take next. And if that is not enough to win you over, the vivid setting–a Charlestown private school–and the colorful 80s references definitely will.

So just put on some 80's music, heat up some Eggos (Sorry, I had to),  
and read My Best Friend's Exorcism – you won't regret it.

Peace, Love, and Lobsters