Exciting New Releases! · Horror Reviews · September 2014 Book Reviews

Book Review: Horrorstor

Author: Grady Hendrix
Pages: 256
Published: September 23, 2014
Genre: Horror, Sequential Art, Thriller
Rating: 4.5/5

Amy is just another employee at an Ikea knock-off store called Orsk. Trained to follow the path of the store and encourage customers to spend as much time in the Orsk maze as possible, Amy is anything but satisfied with her life. While waiting for a transfer to another branch, Amy has it set in her mind that she’ll avoid Basil, a manager that has it in for her, and do everything right until the paperwork is finalized.

Her plan seems to be working until one morning Basil asks to speak to Amy and another employee, Ruth Anne. After yelling at him about firing both of them, Basil informs Amy that he didn’t bring them in to fire them, but to ask them to stay overnight in the store with him to determine who or what is causing damage to store property.

Amy reluctantly agrees and so begins her night of torment and torture locked within the walls of Orsk.

Very chilling and disgustingly descriptive at some points, Grady Hendrix wrote a fantastic story that will get under your skin in all the right ways. If you aren’t a fan of fingernails being pried off, then this might not be the book for you, but it was an excellent read and a must-have for horror fans!

Solid 4.5/5

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Horror Reviews · September 2014 Book Reviews

Book Review: The Demonologist

Author: Andrew Pyper
Pages: 304
Published: March 5, 2013
Genre: Adult, Horror, Paranormal
Rating: 4.5/5

I finished this novel last night and am already planning on reading it again sometime soon. The Demonologist was my first Andrew Pyper novel and I’m completely hooked on this author.

The Demonologist tells the story of Professor David Ullman, a specialist in John Milton’s Paradise Lost, as he travels across the country in search of his missing daughter.

David Ullman is in a broken marriage and is struggling with a crippling depression that has existed since he was little. After his younger brother drowned in a lake and his father committed suicide, David has felt a darkness following him. After his daughter Tess was born, he thought things would be better, but it turns out that Tess is just like David in all the wrong ways.

Returning to his office one day after teaching a class, David encounters a mysterious woman who won’t give any personal information about herself, but is presenting him with an invitation to travel to Italy, all expenses paid, if he would agree to offer his insight on a “situation” currently occurring over there. Unable to provide David with any more information, the woman leaves David to decide what he wants to do.

Not your ordinary thriller novel, The Demonologist kept me guessing the entire time while providing a healthy dose of goosebumps that I haven’t experienced from a novel in a very long time. Quite possibly the creepiest book I have ever read, I loved this novel and feel confident giving it a strong 4.5/5.

 

September 2014 Book Reviews

Book Review: The Alchemist

Author: Paulo Coelho
Pages: 174
Published: April 25, 2006 (First Published 1988)
Genre: Classics, Philosophy, Fantasy
Rating: 5/5

One of my favorite reads of the year, The Alchemist was a beautifully written story about a shepherd that discovers his Personal Legend.

A pretty fast read that forced you to think about what is important in your own life. I’ll definitely be re-reading this book for years to come and completely understand what all the hype was about.

Horror Reviews · September 2014 Book Reviews

Book Review: Carmilla

Author: J. Sheridan Le Fanu
Pages: 108
Published: September 5, 2000 (First Published 1871)
Genre: Horror, Classic, Paranormal
Rating: 4/5

The ultimate vampire story, Carmilla was written two decades prior to Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Carmilla tells the story of a little girl and her vampire friend. It’s honestly hard to describe this story beyond that. As quickly as she enters the lives of the main characters, Carmilla is gone again.

The first story by Le Fanu that I experienced and I really enjoyed it.

I have a physical copy of this story, but I listened to the audiobook through my library.

September 2014 Book Reviews · Series/Trilogies

Book Review: If I Stay

Author: Gayle Forman
Pages: 262
Published: April 6, 2010
Genre: YA, Romance, Contemporary
Rating: 3/5

Originally I gave this novel a 4/5 but after having thought about it for a while, I think a 3 better represents my feelings.

Mia, a cello player with a younger brother and two loving parents, was in a massive car accident with her family. Now trapped in an alternate reality where she can see and hear everything happening around her, but her body is in a coma, Mia must decide if she will stay and wake up from the coma, or give up and go to be with her parents who were killed instantly in the crash.

The story flips between the present and the time building up to the car accident. A very quick read that I got through in a few days, If I Stay was a pretty good story that was entertaining, but was nothing mind blowing.

I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t love it. It was a pretty simple story that didn’t evoke any sort of emotion out of me that I expected. A slight disappointment, but overall an okay read.

September 2014 Book Reviews · Series/Trilogies

Book Review: The Anatomist’s Apprentice (Dr. Thomas Silkstone #1)

Author: Tessa Harris
Pages: 310
Published: January 2012 (First Published January 1, 2011)
Genre: Adult, Mystery, Historical Fiction
Rating: 4/5

I listened to the audiobook of this novel through Overdrive. It was the first audiobook that I ever listened to and I really enjoyed it.

Book one of the Dr. Thomas Silkstone series is a strong beginning to an interesting main character. An anatomist, Dr. Silkstone, must uncover who killed Sir Edward Crick and why. Placed in the late 1800s, The Anatomist’s Apprentice created a fun and enjoyable Victorian-esque crime thriller that I enjoyed.

Tessa Harris provided so many twists and turns along the way that I never knew who was going to be accused of murder next and in the end left me completely surprised at who had killed Edward Crick.

Believeable and entertaining, I will definitely be following along with this character through the next couple books.

Exciting New Releases! · Kids Books · September 2014 Book Reviews · Series/Trilogies

Book Review: The Iron Trial (Magisterium #1)

Author: Holly Black & Cassandra Clare
Pages: 295
Published: September 9, 2014
Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Magic, Paranormal
Rating: 5/5

I freakin’ loved this book so much! I can definitely see why some people were comparing to to Harry Potter. However, I think that comparison only fits if you take the book at face value.

The Iron Trial is book one in the Magisterium series by two YA powerhouses. This book tells the story of Callum. A teenage boy that has magical abilities but has yet to utilize them as his father refused to let him. Callum’s mother was killed in a magical war not too long after he was born. Callum’s father found his mother’s body and saw that she had scratched “Kill the child” into the wall of the cave where she was killed.

Fast forward a few years to when Callum is chosen to attend the Magisterium, a special school created for the most talented of kids to learn how to harness their magical abilities. Dead set on flunking out, Callum has no intention of trying to learn anything while there.

After making two of the best friends that he has ever had and finding a stray wolf pup in the woods, Callum needs to decide if he is going to stay through his first year at the school or quit when given the chance. Callum is thrown through quite a few loops while at the Magisterium and learns who he really is.

I really really really liked this story and can’t wait to read the next one!

Exciting New Releases! · September 2014 Book Reviews

Book Review: Rumble

Author: Ellen Hopkins
Pages: 560
Published: August 26, 2014
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Poetry
Rating: 5/5

Easily my favorite Ellen Hopkins book that I’ve read thus far.

Rumble takes on the tale of a teenage boy recovering from his younger brother’s suicide a few months back. After being bullied incessantly for being gay, his younger brother took his life before Matthew was able to save him. Now with a strong feeling that there is no God, Matthew has to decide where he fits in the world.

Matthew’s girlfriend Hayden has been with him since the beginning, but after recently discovering her own faith, their relationship begins to fall apart. It’s been rumored that Hayden wanted to break it off with Matthew before his brother committed suicide, but stayed with him out of pity.

Matthew must confront whether or not he wants to stay with Hayden, whether or not he believes in any higher power, and whether or not this life is worth living.

A beautifully written story that I read fairly quickly. Thoroughly enjoyed it.

Horror Reviews · Kids Books · September 2014 Book Reviews

Book Review: You Will Call Me Drog

Author: Sue Cowing
Pages: 281
Published: September 1, 2011
Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Science Fiction
Rating: 3/5

You Will Call Me Drog by Sue Cowing was a strong attempt at a pretty dark middle grade story. Parker is a sixth grade boy that likes to search through the local junkyard with his best friend. One day while at the junkyard, Parker discovers a green hand puppet sticking up out of a trashcan. He is immediately intrigued and decides to put it on his hand. Little did Parker know, the hand puppet would come alive and refuse to let go of his hand.

Once the hand puppet has latched onto his hand, it begins to talk, but of course the puppet will only talk to Parker and no one else. So no one believes him when he says that the puppet is alive. After introducing himself to Parker as Drog, Drog begins to torment Parker and make his life difficult.

Parker’s parents are split up and while his mom tries to be super supportive, Parker’s dad thinks he is doing this for attention and is preparing to send Parker to a military school for boys. Parker must do whatever possible to get Drog off his hand before his dad has him sent away.

I enjoyed the story, but felt that it lasted way too long. It seemed as if the author could have wrapped it up a few chapters early, but decided not to and then the ending felt abrupt. Decent story, but wouldn’t read it again. 3/5