Sunday, 12 September 2010

If I went to buy one book and came home with 5 others, would you hold it against me?

Sometimes, that's how I feel, after I've gone to a bookstore for one book, and came home with 5 other ones, partly because the bookstore didn't have the one I was looking for.  I did say to my husband that since Christmas was nearing, I would try to not buy as many books before then, or at least put them aside for my Christmas box.  He smiled at me and sighed.  "So I guess this was to make you feel better?" he said, holding out the new FourFourTwo English Premier League magazine  that I'd also picked up, just for him.  "Well, I did go in for you, you know," I fibbed.  Him and me, more like.

So I won't bother asking if going into a bookstore for one book and coming out with others has happened to you.   I expect this is a common condition we booklovers  suffer from.  What I am curious about is, how often does this happen?  And do you find you go out of your way to avoid bookstores sometimes, just so you won't give in to temptation? I have to confess that as I came out of the bookstore on Friday night,  I did momentarily wonder how I was going to avoid going into Chapters next week.  This particular bookstore is two floors of books, practically irresistible, and it's right there where I cross the street to catch my bus home every night.  Oh yes, I wage a battle almost every day on the way home: do I step across the threshold today, or do I resolutely cross the road instead?

So here are the five books that I couldn't resist in my disappointment that no, the bookstore still wasn't stocking Alexandra Sokoloff's The Unseen:

- A Writer's Book of Days - Judy Reeves (revised edition)

- The Secret History of Moscow - Ekaterina Sedia
- Ghost Road Blues - Jonathan Maberry
- The Keeper - Sarah Langan
- Hell House - Richard Matheson
- The Little Stranger - Sarah Waters

I did get The Little Stranger, which I am very pleased with and looking forward to reading very much, and found Hell House,  which I'd been wanting to read for a while.  Richard Matheson scares me. When I saw The Secret History of Moscow I was delighted, as it is in mass market finally, and I'd been waiting for a very long time it seemed to find it.

So the RIP V list grows!
All of these books (except the writing book) are being added to my RIP V challenge reading list.  Why oh why is this challenge only 2 months long??? So many good scary books to read!  I know I can read scary books any time of year, it's just that as the daylight shortens and nights grow longer, there is something thrilling about opening the pages of a scary novel that is irresistible to me.  This is the time of year for ghost stories, and zombies, and terror.  Books to keep the dark away, indeed.  The dark is right beside you...... The Keeper and Ghost Road Blues were either nominated or won the Bram Stoker Award, and as I am trying to keep up with what's the best in the fields I read, I snapped them up.  Both look very good and very, very scary, especially Ghost Road Blues

I've already read two!

Yes, indeed.   The Uninvited by Tim Wynne Jones.  Jones is a Canadian writer, so I fulfull a Canadian Challenge book as well as RIP V!!  And My Soul To Take, by Yrsa Sigurdardottir.

The Uninvited:  This is a YA adult novel, and very well written.  So much so that I cried at the ending.  The characters are really good, especially Cramer and Mimi.  Cramer's relationship with his mother, a failed artist, is the most gripping part of this book.  She is unstable, and how Cramer tries to live with her, and cope with her moods and emotions, make this book about more than just a coming of age teen gothic novel.  There are many gothic elements in this book, right from the family secrets to the interesting variety of families, to Mimi running away from someone only to find the same situation where she ends up.  The sense of being watched is a big thrill element in this book.  There is also a tiny cottage that is like a secret hideaway.  There is also some points made about creativity, and finding one's voice, and hints about artistic responsibility to art and to family, that I thought were interesting.  It was good to see teens interested and pursuing interests, in this book.   I enjoyed this one very much, even though some of the secondary characters were a bit stereotyped. The main drama was well-done, and I liked the characters.

My Soul To Take - Yrsa Sigurdardottir:  the second book in the Thora Gudmundsdottir mystery series, this one has a ghost so I'm counting it and it's gothic atmosphere as another entry in the RIP V challenge.  It was very surprising to me when I burst into tears at the end, but it was so sad:  the book opens with the locking in an underground room of a 4 year old, and all the way through the book I was wondering - who was she? what happened to her?  Her presence hovers over and through this mystery novel, and what finally happened to her - the sense of discovery, of revelation, is why I read mysteries.  A very satisfying mystery, and much darker than it first appears.  This mystery isn't quite as gripping as her first book Last Rituals, but it is haunting and filled with more family secrets, and the ghosts of more than one person.  Very eerie, and very good.  I am anxious to read the next one in the series, Ashes to Dust, when it comes out in softcover.

So how are you doing with reading for Carl's challenge?  Do you find yourself reading more ghost stories or mysteries in autumn?   Have you been tempted by other bloggers' lists to add books to your reading pile, and what books are they? 

Happy reading, everyone!  I hope you are reading a wonderful eerie ghost story during this weekend.


Gavin said...

Oh, definitely! Go in searching for one book, come out with three others. These all look pretty spooky, particularly Ghost Road Blues.

Molly said...

I am failing miserably at this challenge - mostly because "life" has taken over my life :) I hope to start making some headway in the coming weeks.

I am fascinated by the writing book that you highlighted. I immediately placed a hold for it at my local library. It looks fantastic!

Eva said...

I've now requested the first Sigurdardottir! I was hoping I'd find some RIP-themed posts by you in my reader. :D

Even though I just got back online, I've already read two RIP books this month and have a bunch more requested from the library.

Kailana said...

Part of the reason why I avoid bookstores is because I am always buying too many books! lol

GeraniumCat said...

Have I been tempted by other bloggers' list - ha! Hollow laugh. I've read 6 books for the challenge already. And am currently reading 7 and 8 at once, and have 4 more in the queue. 7 came from one of Carl's reviews, 8 from an invitation to join in a readalong. And then you remind me about Bryant and May, so I have to go and look at Amazon to see if there are Kindle editions. I've got so much to read that something else is going to have to give - maybe eating? Now that would be quite a good thing!