All the Spooky Reads

What's on your list to read this season?

Halloween is almost here! Can you believe it? I'm so ready for all things spooky and fall! I don't know if I'm going to do my 31 Days of Costumes--it can get tiring--but I'm definitely going to shoot for several costumes, movies and books. I have a much more ambitious list of books to read than I'd like, so I thought I'd invite the Real Book readers to help me narrow it down.

Some classics on my list include Something Wicked this Way Comes, Macbeth and Hell House. How I've never read these all the way through, I have no idea. Bradbury, Shakespeare and Matheson--sound like a good Halloween plan? Then I have some re-reads on my list, including Troll's Eye View and Anna Dressed in Blood. Both were favorites of mine years ago, which could mean nothing or everything now! My tastes have definitely changed.

Some other new-to-me ideas include Splendors & Glooms (I was considering this for our family read-aloud), The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein, Labyrinth Lost (which I never finished!) and House of Dries Dear. Would anyone suggest these books, or others that you think are great for this time of year?

What is everyone reading for October? Share your TBRs in the chat! 

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PA School Book Ban

Public outcry helped stop the ban

Too many parents, and subsequently too many schools, are up in arms over teaching their children about anything that isn't white-driven and focused. Their outrage is incredibly misinformed, given the fact that the majority of the public school curriculum are white-driven. Schools where I live are under siege by angry parents during school board meetings, angry about the prospect of critical race theory being taught. Once again, most schools are merely dipping their toes in discussing the deep impact of white supremacy and racism in this nation, but one would think that teachers are committing terrorism based on these parents' behavior.

A school in Pennsylvania recently banned 300 books that discussed race, including children's books by Brad Meltzer about Dr. King and Rosa Parks. The school's diversity committee had attempted to use the list of books to widen the school's representation but the school board went in the opposite direction, banning the books instead. Public outcry, including words from Meltzer himself, helped to rescind the ban, but these materials, along with a bunch of popular anti-racist curriculum, have all been banned since last fall by the all-white school board. Exactly how are we supposed to build a society on anti-racist principles when they aren't even allowed in schools in the first place?

Is your local school district having any issues like this? Share what's happening and what's being done to combat it in the chat.

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Upcoming Mysteries And Thrillers

What are you hoping to read?

Spooky season is almost here, which means it's time to read all the mysteries, thrillers and horror novels! If you like a book that's creepy or scary, this is the perfect time of year to start a TBR featuring just these types of books. Which genre do you love most, and which do you look forward to most?

Goodreads has a great list of upcoming anticipated books from some of these genres. The Collective looks very interesting but I'd love to try all of these books out. I was hoping to read Nos4a2 this fall but I'm not sure I'm going to have the time--especially since I wanted to try the book and then the film. There are a bunch of other fun YA ones, too, like sequels to The Good Girl's Guide to Murder.

Which books are you anticipating most? Which mysteries, thrillers and horror novels would you suggest to somone else? Share your favorites in the chat.

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Most Anticipated Reads in September

What are you looking forward to reading?

September is here, and with it comes a whole new list of books to get excited about! What are you most anticipating? Here are some of the top fantasy novels coming this month, along with some of the top horror novels. For those looking for general fiction, here are more September reads

I'm still making my way through my August list myself. Some of the books I have on hold are still on hold, and I'm still reading a bunch of graphic novels. This week I read Swamp Thing: Two Branches, and I love Maggie Stiefvater so much but it wasn't my favorite. I think she needs more space for her lyrical writing. It was definitely there--the parts where the main character spoke to himself about plants were the best--but there just wasn't enough room for more.

I also grabbed a bunch of others from the library to read. I'll let you know how they are next week! What are you reading this week? What are you most looking forward to this month? Share it in the chat.

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All The LGBTQIA Graphic Novels

Share what you're reading in the chat!

Is anyone else just feeling done with straight characters right now, particularly in graphic novels? Last year I started feeling the same way about non-POC characters and now, after reading a few graphic novels that I really feel represented in, I kind of feel done with straight characters. I'm not saying they shouldn't be written... but after a lifetime of straight saturation, I think I'd be fine just reading about all queer characters for the foreseeable future.

Gender Queer by Maia Kobabe is what's really on my mind, although I've been reading lots of LGBTQIA lit this week. From Archival Quality to Thirsty Mermaids to Witchlight, I'm just loving these books so much. But Gender Queer was like... wow. I felt like Kobabe was writing about me at many points in the book and I sure wish I'd had it to read as a confused kid. I'm so glad younger generations have this book--that they have all of these books.

Have any other great graphic novels about LGBTQIA folks to share? What are your favorites? I'd love to read them. Share them in the chat!

Fun And Creepy Graphic Novels

Share what you're reading in the chat!

This week I'm continuing my Graphic Novel Season of just-for-fun books with Ever After and Seance Tea Party. Both were enjoyable but not my favorites. Last week's Beetle & the Hollowbones and Snapdragon were better, but I sure am loving this whole spooky, fun vibe. It's really getting me into the Halloween mood and it's not even September yet! 

This week I have Thirsty Mermaids reserved at the library, among others, and I'm really looking forward to reading it. It's so much fun to just plow through these books in half an hour or an hour, enjoying all of the pretty art and fun stories. Teen me, who had much more time on their hands, would have definitely paused longer to re-read (which I may have to do with Pumpkinheads, one of my favorites from last year) and even draw some of the art.

Are you embracing this Graphic Novel Season with me? What are you reading? Share your favorite graphic novels in the chat.

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Graphic Novel Season

Isn't it always?

One could argue that it's always graphic novel season, but in our house it's always graphic novel season when I'm feeling overwhelmed like I am at the moment. When you just don't have the time to learn a new world and all of its complexities, or to decide whether or not a 400-page brick is going to be your your cup of tea or not. Some readers tell me they don't know this feeling but many do, especially during intense times of stress and uncertainty. That's when a graphic novel, often enjoyable anyway, comes in extra handy.

Last week I read Grimoire Noir and The Lost Circus, both of which were filled with magic and fun. Grimoire was the better of the two. This week I picked up Witchlight, The Daughters of Ys, Beetle & The Hollowbones and several others. I'd love more suggestions--the more magical, feminist, and beautiful, the better!

What graphic novels are you escaping into this week? Share them in the chat. 

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Goodreads YA Week

More YA Goodness!

We just discussed some of the YA books we're most looking forward to here at Real Book, and now Goodreads is hosting an entire YA Week! This is such an exciting event with all kinds of guides to help readers connect with new-to-them books, celebrate old favorites and find out what everyone is reading.

There's a list of the 36 Most Anticipated YA Novels coming up as well as 48 New YA Books That Are On Trend. There's a list of books that are going to be adapted to a TV series or film, which we're especially excited about. Children of Smoke and Bone's adaptation is especially exciting to hear about! There are lists of the top reads for this year, the top speculative books and so many more. It's going to take days for us to pore over these babies and compare them with our TBRs!

What YA reads are you most excited about? Which ones are new to you from these lists? Share them in the chat! 

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Waiting For August YA

Which books are you most anticipating?

There's just something about young adult literature. It doesn't spend endless time on a piece of brocade or churning butter like regular fantasy sometimes does, and it features themes that are often fairly universal. It's more exciting in many ways, and sometimes it's even faster to read. This month there are several highly sought-after books releasing, too. 

The Dead and the Dark is one that I've been wanting to read and when Goodreads sent me a notification that it was available I smacked that hold button at the library. There's mystery, ghost hunters and queer romance; what's not to love? I can't wait to read it. Here are some other books coming out this month.

What books are you most eager to read in August? Share them in the chat.

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August Books to Read

What are you excited about?

Can you believe that August is nearly upon us? There are loads of great reads coming to a bookstore (or reading device!) near you and I'd love to see what you're most excited about reading. Barnes & Noble has a good list to begin with. It features several favorites, including Stephen King, and there's bound to be something of interest there.

Goodreads tends to have the most exhaustive lists and I see SO many I'd love to read this August! I'm excited about Helen Hoang's new release since I enjoyed the other two in the series. Keep in mind that Goodreads also features lists by genre so you can easily narrow down what you want to read if you choose to do so. Does anyone else feel like there are just so many books and TV series now that it's difficult to even choose which one to read next?

What do you hope to read this August? What will you be re-reading? Share your choices in the chat!

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