Halloween Non-Horror Recommendations!

Top Ten Tuesday(93)

So as I promised I’ve done up a post for those of you who want to read some spooky books for Halloween but don’t necessarily like horror or want your pants scared off! These are mostly all thrillers or have a paranormal factor present.

If you want to see my Halloween Horror Recommendations you can check that out here.

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Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Cordova

(Review Here)

A great diverse read featuring a Latino family of brujas (witches) and when Alex tries to rid herself of her powers her entire family vanishes. This is a very magical adventure full of family love and who doesn’t love a good witch book?


The Darkest Corners by Kara Thomas

(Review Here)

This is a thriller about a girl who lied about who murdered their babysitter when they were younger and must now hunt for the true killer. This doesn’t have much for Halloween vibes but it is a very dark and twisted story full of surprises. It definitely gets gritty and you’ll get chills reading through it!


Coraline by Neil Gaiman

(Review Here)

Who doesn’t think “Coraline” is a Halloween classic now? Because I sure do! It’s subtly creepy and just absolutely perfect for reading this time of year.


The Hanging Girl by Eileen Cook

(Review Here)

Another thriller but this one has some psychics involved making it all the more perfect for some Halloween reading. A girl who fakes being psychic must now help the police find a missing girl but she may just have some insider information….


Black Bird of the Gallows by Meg Kassel

(Review Here)

Harbingers of Death? That screams Halloween in my opinion! A mysterious boy shows up in town accompanied by flocks of strange crows and when he saves Angie from something supernatural she realizes he may not be human either. Paranormal elements and a slightly creepy atmosphere makes this another great read for non-horror fans!


The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

Another book that shouldn’t surprise many of you but “The Graveyard Book” is about a boy who is raised by the supernatural residents of a graveyard. It’s full of adventure and just straight up adorableness.


I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga

A mystery thriller revolving around Jasper Dent the son of the most infamous serial killers in the world. Jasper was being groomed to take over the “family business” and therefore can see crime scenes from a criminal’s POV so when a new serial killer shows up in his small town he’s determined to prove it’s not him.

So, so, sooooo many twists and turns with this one it’s especially great if you have a morbid curiosity about serial killers, like me.


The Grownup by Gillian Flynn

(Review Here)

I could honestly recommend any of Flynn’s books but this short story fits the best in my opinon. It’s about a woman who fakes psychic readings and help from the beyond for money. When a woman wants her help ridding her house of something evil our main character may just start believing in ghosts….

Super quick read and open ended so if open endings aren’t your thing I’d skip it.


The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

(Review Here)

Psychics, ancient sleeping kings, ley lines, and magic trees I think it’s safe to say this isn’t your run of the mill paranormal romance or urban fantasy. It’s full of magic and sets a very fast pace not to mention you will definitely fall in love with the characters!


The Last Apprentice: Revenge of the Witch by Joseph Delaney

This is more Middle Grade than YA but it’s still super interesting and full of supernatural spirits and creatures and there’s more than a few creepy moments too as Thomas learns about how to be a Spook.


The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco

(Review Here)

This one is filled with monsters, demons, undead, and spirits and while it has a few dark moments it mostly follows a girl named Tea learning to control her powers of necromancy.


This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

(Review Here)

This book fits into a kind of neat genre but it’s about a girl who wants to hunt monsters and boy who is one of those monsters in a city torn into two sects. The monsters are very unique and fun to read about and the characters are a bit morally grey, definitely a fun read though and the monsters aren’t TOO creepy either!


Bad Blood by Demitria Lunetta

(Review Here)

Another witch book makes the list! This one is about a girl who visits Scotland and learns a bit more about her family’s past as she continues having visions of two women and a bit more about witchcraft and blood magic. Honestly the background of Scotland makes this book worth the read as well!

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Have you read any of this books? What did you think?

Will you give any of these books a try?

What are some of your favorite non-horror Halloween reads?

Let me know in the comments!

The Sassy

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ARC Review: The Hanging Girl by Eileen Cook

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Skye Thorn has given tarot card readings for years, and now her psychic visions are helping the police find the town’s missing golden girl. It’s no challenge—her readings have always been faked, but this time she has some insider knowledge. The kidnapping was supposed to be easy—no one would get hurt and she’d get the money she needs to start a new life. But a seemingly harmless prank has turned dark, and Skye realizes the people she’s involved with are willing to kill to get what they want and she must discover their true identity before it’s too late.

review

**** Huge thank you to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review! ****

After reading and enjoying Cook’s other novel “With Malice” I knew I was going to be in for a treat with “The Hanging Girl” and it definitely did not let me down! I can’t go into too much detail because I really don’t want to ruin anything but it really is a thrilling, fast-paced book!

PLOT

The focus of the story is the main character, Skye, who fakes being a psychic and is enlisted to help the police find a missing girl. She has some inside information on the kidnapping though in exchange for getting money she desperately needs, but things don’t exactly go as planned. That’s all I’m going to tell you!

This is a pretty fast paced book with never a dull moment and also one that will grab your attention immediately. Our protagonist, Skye, is shown as a liar and manipulator right off the bat and therefore a bit of an unreliable narrator, which is always intriguing to me. There are quite a few plot twists throughout the story and I didn’t see hardly any of them coming at all! I also thought it was great that major plot twists occur in the story pretty early on too, definitely keeps things interesting! If you’re already a suspicious reader, like myself, you may guess a few things but I think it’s safe to say you’ll still get surprised.

The psychic portions of the story were also really interesting and perfect for Halloween if you’re looking for a great, non-spooky thriller to read!

I was a little disappointed with the ending, I just felt it wasn’t as shocking as a lot of the other twists were and it was slightly more predictable. I felt like it was abrupt and unfinished, it wasn’t a BAD ending by any means but it left me a little unsatisfied.

I’d also like to mention that the protagonist, Skye,  has anxiety and having anxiety myself I thought it was represented well. She is constantly dealing with the threat of a panic attack throughout the story, and considering the situations it’s not surprising for someone with anxiety. I thought the way the anxiety was described was also fairly accurate such as Skye picking at the skin on her fingertips or biting her nails, that’s something I do because of my anxiety as well and it was extremely relatable.

characters

There really isn’t much to discuss as far as characters go, there’s Skye and as I already mentioned she’s manipulative, a bit unreliable, and also suffers from anxiety. I did really like her character though because she’s doing things for a good reason and found her to be very relatable.

As far as secondary characters go they are there to drive the plot and not much else. The only other moderately interesting character’s would be Skye’s mom, her best friend Drew, and another character whose name I won’t mention due to spoilers but they were……interesting.

romance

One of the best parts about this book is that there is no romance to distract from all the plot twists and thrills!

in conclusion

Overall this was a fun, quick read!

What I Loved:

  • Fast pacing
  • Mindfuckery/ great plot twists
  • Good anxiety rep
  • Relatable main character

What I Didn’t Love:

  • The ending was a little disappointing and felt unfinished

RECOMMEND

I recommend checking this one out especially for Halloween coming up or if you just enjoy a really good, fast-paced thriller!

Links: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

The Sassy

(A Very ARC Loaded) September TBR

Top Ten Tuesday(85)

This month’s TBR makes me think I really, really should have participated in ARC August….because these are ALL ARCs. I have got a TON of reading to do this month! I’m hoping I can get out of my mini reading slump here and power through all of these books because I really am excited to read all of them.

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Girls Made of Snow & Glass by Melissa Bashardoust

This is a Snow White retelling that I’m currently trying to power through, it’s very interesting but the pacing is extremely uneven and I’m stuck in a super slow part at the moment.


Black Bird of the Gallows by Meg Kassel

I feel terrible I didn’t get to this one last month like I was supposed to. This may or may not be my cup of tea since it seems very romance-focused but hopefully the whole “harbinger of death” thing will keep things interesting!


Nyxia by Scott Reintgen

This is a sci-fi novel about a character who is recruited by a corporation to leave Earth and mine a new valuable resource on another planet. However, this planet was kept secret and that’s not all the corporation is hiding. It sounds pretty exciting so I’m hoping it proves worth while!


The Devils You Know by M.C. Atwood

A group of seniors travel to Boulder House for their senior trip but the house is said to be cursed. When the characters get separated from the rest of their group they realize the truth is much more horrifying. Of course I’m always up for some YA horror, hopefully it’s thrilling!


The Tiger’s Daughter by K. Arsenault Rivera

Two young female warriors, whose births were prophesied, must save the world from demons. Sounds badass, period.


The Hanging Girl by Eileen Cook

Skye has been faking tarot card readings for a while but when the police ask her to help find a missing girl she already has some inside information. The kidnapping was planned and she was going to get a cut but things have taken a dark turn and she must find them before it’s too late. This sounds both spooky and thrilling so hopefully it will be a great read!


The Hollow Girl by Hillary Monahan

Bethan is an apprentice green healer in a clan of Welsh-Romanies, however, all isn’t well as the son of the chieftain and his friends brutally assault both Bethan and her friend Martyn. Bethan wants to bring Martyn back from death’s door but is told the price of the magic required is gruesome. When the boys who attacked her don’t come forward and apologize she knows where to collect those ingredients…..

This sounds super creepy and I’m really excited to get to it, I loooove YA horror!


This Darkness Mine by Mindy McGinnis

Sasha has everything working out for her: first chair clarinet, top of her class, the perfect boyfriend, and she has her way to being a star musician free and clear. However, a new guy shows up and she finds herself drawn to him and missing his touch even though she’s never met him. She then discovers she absorbed her twin in the womb which may explain her missing memories……

This is another books that sounds strangely creepy yet very mysterious and thrilling, I’m hoping it pans out!


Gray Wolf Island Tracey Neithercott

Right before her sister died she asked Ruby to find the treasure on Gray Wolf Island, armed with a treasure map and a few friends who are all touched by magic. However, each friend is keeping a secret and they must reveal it in order to reach the treasure.

Is it just me or are there not enough treasure themed books? This sounds really unique and compelling!

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Are any of these books on your TBR?

Have you read any of these, what did you think?

What are you planning on reading this month?

Let me know in the comments!

The Sassy