Top Ten Tuesday: Halloween Freebie

Hello Readers!

And happy almost Halloween! Halloween is one of my most favorite holidays. I love the tricks and I love the treats! I love how on every other television station there are a ton of great horror flicks to watch. I love the chill in the air, the turning of the leaves, and the creepiness of it all.

That’s why for this Halloween Freebie I’ve decided to pair some of my favorite YA horror books with some of my favorite horror movies!

Possess by Grechen McNeil and The Exorcist

Devils Unto Daughters by Amy Lukavics and The Shining

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black and Let the Right One In

Undead Girl Gang by Lily Anderson and Night of the Living Dead

How to Hang a Witch by Adriana Mather and Susperia

The Monstrumologist by Rick Yancy and Frankenstein

Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake and Stephen King’s Carrie

There’s Someone Inside Your Hose by Stephanie Perkins and John Carpenters (original) Halloween

Fiendish by Brenna Yovanoff and (original) Amityville Horror

The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert and Pan’s Labyrinth

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Middle Grade Monday: Graveyard Shakes

Graveyard Shakes by Laura Terry

Victoria and Katia aren’t accustomed to life in a big city. All they’ve known is a home on a goat farm. Their home is a home where they were free to be who they wanted to be and free to do whatever it is they chose to do.

But when they’re accepted into a fancy boarding school, both of their lives suddenly change. Older sister Victoria is worried about fitting in, while younger sister Katia is worried about losing her individuality (she is the lone wolf type).

Faced with the first day jitters, Victoria sets out to make, not only a new life for herself, but new friends. And in doing so, she embarrasses herself in front of … everyone. In the hopes of making things better she decides to sign both her and sister Katia up for some school clubs.

While Victoria finds the possibility of joining the soccer team exciting, Katia isn’t thrilled at the prospect of joining Orchestra. So much so that she storms out of the audition and into an oncoming blizzard.

Within that blizzard Katia finds a group of ghostly friends that she feels let her be who she wants to be. They don’t tell her what to do, nor do they tell her who she should be. They’re happy with Katia just as she is. Or so she thinks they’re happy with her. But their ghostly motives are dark and sinister. Their motives not only put Katia in harm’s way, but also Victoria.

Will the sisters survive? Or will they be the newest residents of the graveyard?

Graveyard Shakes, a middle grade graphic novel written and illustrated by Laura Terry, has all the chills and thrills for all adventurous readers!

What I personally loved about this graphic novel, besides the story itself, is how the story is told mostly through the illustrations. While this book isn’t wordless, it doesn’t necessarily rely on the text. Don’t get me wrong, Terry’s writing is strong, inviting, and imaginative. But more so are her lush illustrations.  The illustrations allow readers to step inside the mind and imagination of creator Terry.

The colors in each panel are vibrant and rich. More than that they lend to the underlying creep factor that is threaded throughout this book.

I feel like I could go one and on about the illustrations, especially since this is a graphic novel.  But I won’t. Instead I want to talk about another facet of this book that resonated with me as a reader. Main characters Victoria and Katia. While I loved how Katia strived to maintain her lone wolf status, and how she celebrated her individuality, I truly appreciated Victoria. At a young age I think we all go through that phase where, as much as we want to be an individual, we also want to fit in. I love how author/illustrator Terry explored that, and explored it in a way that was honest and relatable.

This facet let me, as an adult reader, reflect on that time period in my own life. And it made me think about how those formative years shaped the person I am today. I think younger readers will see a lot of themselves within both main characters. More than that, they will cheer for them.

Graveyard Shakes was a book I picked up at a local comic bookstore. It was a book I picked up because I was drawn to the beautiful cover. And after reading it, I’m so glad that I judge books by their covers, because this is one of the best ones I’ve read lately!

Freebie Friday: Imposters Giveaway

Hello Dear Readers!

And happy Friday! Since I’m trying to get back on track with this whole blogging thing I figured it would be fun to celebrate with a giveaway!

Today, I am giving one lucky winner a chance to win a copy of Imposter written by Scott Westerfeld.  One lucky winner, eighteen (18) and over residing in the United States will win a hardcover copy of Westerfeld’s highly anticipated Imposters. This giveaway will be open from 8:00 am on October 26th until 11:59 pm on Friday November 2nd. One winner will be selected via random number generator, and will be contacted via e-mail on Saturday November 3rd. If a response isn’t received by Sunday 11:59 pm on November 4th, a new winner will be selected and e-mailed.

Imposters by Scott Westerfeld:

“Frey and Rafi are inseparable … but very few people have ever seen them together. This is because Frey is Rafi’s double, raised in the shadows of their rich father’s fortress. While Rafi has been taught to charm, Frey has been taught to kill. Frey only exists to protect her sister. There is no other part of her life. Frey has never been out in the world on her own – until her father sends her in Rafi’s place to act as collateral for a dangerous deal. Everyone thinks she’s her sister – but Col, the son of a rival leader, is starting to get close enough to tell the difference. As the stakes grow higher and higher, Frey must decide whether she can trust him – or anyone in her life.” – from Goodreads.com

Want a chance to win this book? To enter you first must subscribe to The BookBandit blog, and also must leave a comment on THIS post telling me what’s your favorite book series?

Thanks for stopping by, and good luck!

(Cover image and summary both from Goodreads.com)

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Villains

Hello Dear Readers!

I fell off the blogging wagon, but I’m happy to be back on! And what better way to hop back on the wagon than by posting a fun Top Ten Tuesday post!

Today I’m going to talk to you about my top ten favorite villains. Truth be told, the villains are often times my most favorite characters. While I always root for good over evil, I can’t help but have a soft spot for those dark, evil characters. Not only am I going to share with you my top villains, but I’ll also give a brief explanation as to why I included them because some villains aren’t always obvious.

Catherine/Queen of Hearts (Heartless by Marissa Meyer) – Catherine, the future Queen of Hearts is on this list because, even though she doesn’t necessarily start out as a villain, I loved to read and witness as the reader the progression of her downward spiral into someone evil.

Carden (The Cruel Prince by Holly Black) – Carden is unabashedly cruel and evil to his very core. He makes no qualms about that, and I really loved how sinister yet how emotionally complex he is as a character.

Hollowgasts (Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs) – These are the creatures in which nightmares are made of.

Anna (Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake) – Anna is a ghost who takes revenge on anyone who enters her house. She mysterious. She’s complex. And she’s chilling! All characteristics that make her a perfect villain.

Umbridge (Harry Potter & The Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling) – Yes, I know Lord Voldemort is, like, the ultimate villain, but in my opinion,  Umbridge wasn’t too far behind. She was pure evil.

Teacher (The Girl From the Other Side (Manga Series) by Nagabe )- If you haven’t read this manga, let me explain this, I personally DO NOT consider Teacher to be evil or a villain in any way. But I included this character on this list because I love how he’s portrayed as being inherently evil when in reality he is quite the opposite. He’s the kind of character that shows readers the importance of not judging based on looks and perceptions.

The Wasp Queen (The Nest by Kenneth Oppel) – Any insect that turns on a human is a villain in my book!

The Monster (A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness) – Even I feel this is an odd one to include on this list. Personally I loved the Monster in this book. Even though monsters are generally the bad guys, I think we all have them and we all have to face them.

Rosa (My Sister Rosa by Justine Larbelestier) – Rosa is the quiet kind of evil that creeps up slowly from behind, and strikes when you least expect it. As a character I feared her, but even knowing just how evil she was I couldn’t help but want to figure out this complex character.

The Jersey Devil (The Devil and Winnie Flynn by Micol Ostow) – As a girl who is born and raised in Jersey, the lore that surrounds are most famous devil is always one that I love.

(All images from GoodReads)