Category Archives: Events

That’s It! The SSWBB Sign-up is over!

Thanks to everyone who signed up. I think this will be a great annual thing I can start doing here on Reckless Indulgence to bring all book lovers together. We had 25 participants this year with 3 choosing to bensure a secret Santa to more than one person. (You guys rock in particular!)

Anyway, I’ll be sending out all the info to the wonderful Santas by the weekend.

To everyone else, a Happy December to you all!

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MIDDAY ANNOUNCEMENT! NANOWRIMO 2015… BEGIN!

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You know what you need to do.

Sign-up and get your fingers/pens moving!

MIDNIGHT ANNOUNCEMENT! NANOWRIMO 2015… BEGIN! (At least here in the East Coast lol…)

nanoprep

You know what you need to do.

Sign-up and get your fingers/pens moving!

[Day 30] HauntoberFest – It

Can you believe it? We’ve come to our last showcasing of festive books for HauntoberFest 2015! I hope you’ve enjoyed this event as much as I have. Just FINDING these books again was a delight. Maybe you’ve discovered some new favourites over the month, or simply had the opportunity to spread the love of bookish horror, macabre, and ghoulish fun to others.

Either way, enjoy — what I consider to be — the most horror appropriate book of the season:

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Title: It

AuthorStephen King

Page Length: 1116 pages (BEHEMOTH)

Buy it here: Amazon | B&N | Goodreads

Synopsis: To the children, the town was their whole world. To the adults, knowing better, Derry, Maine was just their home town: familiar, well-ordered for the most part. A good place to live.

It was the children who saw – and felt – what made Derry so horribly different. In the storm drains, in the sewers, IT lurked, taking on the shape of every nightmare, each one’s deepest dread. Sometimes IT reached up, seizing, tearing, killing . . .

The adults, knowing better, knew nothing.

Time passed and the children grew up, moved away. The horror of IT was deep-buried, wrapped in forgetfulness. Until they were called back, once more to confront IT as IT stirred and coiled in the sullen depths of their memories, reaching up again to make their past nightmares a terrible present reality.

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 QUOTE

“Eddie discovered one of his childhood’s great truths. Grownups are the real monsters, he thought.”

― Stephen King, It

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Why did I chose this book?

 

Or more precisely, “Why did I choose this book to end off our month of freight and thrills and disturbing as shit?” BECAUSE THIS BOOK IS ALL THAT ROLLED UP INTO ONE. I STILL HAVE NIGHTMARES ABOUT IT. YOU CAN’T MAKE ME EVER READ IT AGAIN. IT AIN’T HAPPENIN’. Jkfnsjanfdjnfladj

So. Y’know. Perfect book to end the month on. *smirksmirk**slinksaway*

Why did I ever think reading this book was a good idea? I don’t know! Why do I feel I should recommend it as the epitome of horror to all of you, lovelies? >3 ….Because I’m an asshole, THAT’S WHY. ❤

What I love/like about it:

  • This was the very first book I ever read that so definitively stated what I’d known all along… that adults are the real monsters.
  • Embodies the essence of horror
  • The title is absolutely perfect, don’t you think? The simpliest, yet most striking title to give a book about your worst and deadliest fears.
  • King’s writing mastery, as always. I’m a big fan of it and the poetic nature of his writing. I get very annoyed when I hear people say he’s too descriptive. You can never be too descriptive homg *eyeroll*
  • Fuckin’ clowns.

 

FINAL RATING

Four-half-stars for Brent Weeks

 

Warnings or Triggers

Don’t even get me started here.


 

ALTERNATIVE TITLES FOR THE DAY

Because this book so epitomizes everything about terror that you can imagine, I really didn’t have any other titles as “alternatives”. That being said, here’s a fantastic collection of Halloween stories you can read instead, if you don’t want to drive into the twisted world of “It”:

 

 

It’s Almost The Start of November, And You Know What Time That Is!

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It’s NANOWRIMO time!!!

😀 😀 😀 😀

Regardless of your feelings on this writing “competition,” it is a fantastic event to participate in if you want to experience that rush as you write alongside thousands upon thousands of others INTERNATIONALLY… Everyone trying to get out that crazy story that’s been tumbling around in their head for goodness knows how long.

And what’s the goal? 50,000 words or more in a single month. Can you do it? 

I’ve been a participant since… hmm… 200…3? 2004? Something like that! 😀 So, you can just say I’m something of a veteran. Nonetheless, I will always advocate and support this event and all it’s promotion of creativity and the glorious art of writing.

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PepTalk – NaNo-ing Advice: I wanted to leave you with a final piece of advice:

Speaking from my own past and current experience, “bad writing” is just as important and influential as “good writing.”

Don’t let anyone tell you differently.

“Bad writing” can be learned from, improved upon, and refined. “Bad writing” is a priceless commodity that helps you get one step closer to achieving your goal. Bad writing is awesome.

(FYI – I just don’t condone the publishing of said “bad writing” *hur hur should be obvious*)

So don’t be discouraged if you end up writing something that isn’t the greatest come the end of November. Be proud that you got it all down and written in the first place! You’re one step closer than those who are still stuck in the godawful, “I’ll write it down… someday…” phase.

Now that you’ve written your story — about 150+ pages worth of it — you can turn that junk into gold.

“Good” and even “great writing” talents can be discovered! And what writer out there doesn’t enjoy a good challenge to force you to get some writing time into your day?

So sign-up now! Get ready for November!

[Day 29] HauntoberFest – House of Leaves

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Title: The House Of Leaves

AuthorMark Z. Danielewski

Page Length: 736 pages

Buy it here: Amazon | B&N | Goodreads

Synopsis: Years ago, when House of Leaves was first being passed around, it was nothing more than a badly bundled heap of paper, parts of which would occasionally surface on the Internet. No one could have anticipated the small but devoted following this terrifying story would soon command. Starting with an odd assortment of marginalized youth — musicians, tattoo artists, programmers, strippers, environmentalists, and adrenaline junkies — the book eventually made its way into the hands of older generations, who not only found themselves in those strangely arranged pages but also discovered a way back into the lives of their estranged children.

Now, for the first time, this astonishing novel is made available in book form, complete with the original colored words, vertical footnotes, and newly added second and third appendices.

The story remains unchanged, focusing on a young family that moves into a small home on Ash Tree Lane where they discover something is terribly wrong: their house is bigger on the inside than it is on the outside.

Of course, neither Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Will Navidson nor his companion Karen Green was prepared to face the consequences of that impossibility, until the day their two little children wandered off and their voices eerily began to return another story — of creature darkness, of an ever-growing abyss behind a closet door, and of that unholy growl which soon enough would tear through their walls and consume all their dreams.

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 QUOTE

“This is not for you.“

― Mark Z. Danielewski, The House of Leaves

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Why did I chose this book?

I have two main reasons.

The first is as follows:

Truly a beast of a book, I’d say this is one of those you’ll either love with all your being or hate excessively. I really don’t think there’s a middle ground. I’m one of those who love this book, and not – regardless of what some might say – for pretentious reasons either.

I’ve always been quite found of this sort of experimental writing, and I think (along with the one and only Dhalgren) definitely fulfilled what they sought out to do — and that is to bring a different perspective to its readers by taking them out of their comfort zones and making them stop… and THINK.

I applaud books that do this. Whether for the good or the bad, I applaud any book that seeks to make their reader stop a moment and ponder the “what if” (and also the “what the fuck” because that’s just, if not even more, important a question).

This is a horror book, but not in the conventional way you would think “horror.” This is a philosophical book, but also not in the conventional way you would think philosophy. This is a thriller and a suspense, but it needs you input to make it terrifying, to make it come alive… and THAT, I think it sensational.

If you can find the time to ever pick this book up, during the month of October or otherwise, do so. Either love it or hate it, but read it. That’s all that matters in the long run.

As for the second:

Partially because I just love it. Primarily because it’s so controversial. Some say it’s complete bullshit. Others praise and rave that it’s the greatest horror book of its time.

I’m on neither side. I know, shocking, right? Because I do understand where both sides are coming from. This book was definitely made to… impress. But I somehow doubt that’s supposed to lessen its incredible storytelling and horrific components. I read this book and was thoroughly entertained, wholly freaked out, and loving every minute of it. But I could definitely tell when I was being… purposely dazzled by the author. For what? To show off their intelligence? For show how much time and effort and ridiculous dedication went into it? To say “Lookie here at what I did! See how much better it is than all of yours”? I haven’t the faintest idea.

But here’s the kicker.

STILL DOES NOT TAKE AWAY FROM THE FACT THAT THIS IS AN AWESOME BOOK.

😀

Author intents aside, I would definitely pull this one out for any of my hardcore, monster-sized-book-lovers to tackle during this lovely, frightful month of October. I really wouldn’t recommend it unless you planned to be dedicated to unraveling this behemoth in quick succession.

What I love/like about it:

  • The utterly… bizarre nature of this book. Open to ANY page and you’ll immediately see what I’m talking about.
  • The original and experimental style of writing which I’m always fascinated by
  • The MASSIVE AMOUNT OF WORK PUT INTO THIS SUCKER. That includes every footnote, every appendix, every little word scribbled in the sidelines or spiraled out of control on any given page.
  • Which brings me to… the typography and interior book design! OUT OF THIS WORLD GORGEOUS.
  • The… disturbing resonance that just… lingers, after you’re done reading another section, another page of this creepy ass book.
  • The concept. I cannot tell you enough of just how awesome I think it is. Truly.

 

FINAL RATING

Four-half-stars for Brent Weeks

 

Warnings or Triggers

All manner of… ugh. Just be careful. It’s a dark, dark world in here.

Every frightful thing you can imagine lurks within. This is a story about everyone’s fears, everyone’s… twisted imaginings and how all that comes together to make… the house of leaves. Asdfghjkl; There’s some fucked up shit in here. Mark my words.


 

ALTERNATIVE TITLES FOR THE DAY

These titles were all possibilities for today.

  

 

 

[Day 28] HauntoberFest – Being Dead

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Title: Being Dead

AuthorVivian Van Velde

Page Length: 203 pages

Buy it here: Amazon | B&N | Goodreads

Synopsis: From the hilarious to the horrific, master storyteller Vivian Vande Velde explores the world of the dead–and the undead–in this surprisingly moving collection of unnerving tales.

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 QUOTE

 “People always talk about good, fresh country air, but I kept getting wiffs of something that was neither good nor fresh but definitely country.” ― Vivian Van Velde, Being Dead

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Why did I chose this book?

Yet another book from my childhood. I think this one still has a special place of honor on my “favourites” bookcase. *goes to check* ….Yup! Still there. xD

This was an interesting collection of horror oriented tales. Some were funny. Some were sad. Some were just plain weird. But all in all, I’d consider this a solid book for the YA group. (I also think a good many adults would enjoy this book as well.)

Also, I found my selection of titles was eerily missing more ghost stories. You can never go wrong with more ghost stories. NEVER. x3

What I love/like about it:

  • The author. Won’t lie, I’m completely biased because I love V3. She’s rad and I think all her works are awesome. (Well… all her works that I’ve read. I won’t comment on things I haven’t, even for her. :P)
  • The wide selection of topics these “ghostly tales” span across. I remember I was delighted to find that every story had it’s own unique point and message.

 

FINAL RATING

 

Warnings or Triggers

Well… they’re ghost stories, so you can expect all sorts of things from them. What not to expect is anything too graphic. I remember the stories weren’t really gore-y or anything, just spooky and a little scary at times. A good many were more on the humorous side.?


 

ALTERNATIVE TITLES FOR THE DAY

    

 

 

[Day 27] HauntoberFest – The Traveling Vampire Show

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Title: The Traveling Vampire Show

Author: Richard Laymon

Page Length: 391 pages

Buy it here: Amazon | B&N | Goodreads

Synopsis: Though gloomy with clouds, it is a hot, August morning in the summer of 1963. All over the rural town of Grandville, tacked to power poles and trees, taped to store windows, blowing along the sidewalks, fliers have appeared announcing the mysterious one-night-only performance of The Traveling Vampire Show.

The show will feature Valeria, the only known vampire in captivity. According to the fliers, she is a gorgeous, stunning beauty. In the course of the performance, she will stalk volunteers from the audience, sink her teeth into their necks and drink their blood!

For three local teenagers who see the fliers, this is a show they don’t want to miss. But they may have to.

Though they can probably scrape up the price of admission, other obstacles stand in the way. One problem, nobody under 18 years of age is allowed into the show. Dwight, Rusty, and Slim are only 16. Another problem, the show begins at midnight and the three teens always have to be home by then. If that weren’t bad enough, the show is to take place at Janks Field — a desolate patch of ground with a nasty history — that has been declared off limits by their parents.

The situation appears hopeless.

Though Dwight and his friends fear they won’t be able to attend the actual performance of the Traveling Vampire Show, they do have the entire day to themselves. Why not hike out to Janks Field and take a look around? With any luck, they might be able to watch the crew make preparations for tonight’s performance. If they’re really lucky, maybe they’ll get a peek at Valeria, the gorgeous vampire.

And so the three friends set off on foot for Janks Field…

Dwight is a solid, honest kid, long on common sense and loyalty to his friends. He always tries to do what’s right.

Rusty is a husky guy who relishes trouble.

Slim, their long-time pal, is the brains of the outfit, a voracious reader of novels, an aspiring writer, and a girl. Also, she is sometimes too brave for her own good.

The Traveling Vampire Show is the tale, told in Dwight’s own words, of what happened to him, Rusty and Slim on that hot summer day they hiked to Janks Field. It’s the story of their friendship and love, their temptations, their betrayals, and their courage as they went where they shouldn’t go, did what they shouldn’t do…and ran into big trouble.

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Why did I chose this book?

 

When I was a a few years younger than these kids’ age, I read this book and I honestly had the time of my life. This was one of those late night, under the cover reads at midnight when you’re supposed to be sleeping so you can wake up for school the next morning type of books.

I haven’t read it since then, but I can always remember fondness when I think of the title. As always, I never really read anything that was… “age appropriate” — still, apparently, don’t — but I would definitely say the book is geared towards teens/young adults, something along those lines. I don’t know how well it would win over an adult audience, but I know for the age group it is designated for, it will be a hit!

What I love/like about it:

  • The… atmosphere of the book. I don’t remember all the details per se, but I remember the book’s atmosphere was something that had me saying, “Just one more page! Just one more page!” right into the morning. 😄
  • The characters. I don’t know if there was anything about them that I didn’t like, but I do remember liking them.
  • The seductive nature of the writing. Especially for the age I was when reading this book, it was quite taboo, and that made it all the better. As I said, for an adult audience, I don’t know how big the “wow” factor will be, but if you can suspend your expectations a bit, you might find yourself liking it quite a bit! 😉

 

FINAL RATING

 

Warnings or Triggers

Some disturbing content matter. Some cussin’. Some sexual situations. Y’know. The usual.

Oh yeah, and lots of blood and horror and overall RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!!!! horror moments.


 

ALTERNATIVE TITLES FOR THE DAY

I’ve got some series for you today! Click on the images below and they’ll take you to the series page:

     

And this would be my only “adult” title for the day. (M/M Romance with some… intriguing themes. Be forewarned. Some may be offended by this material. I almost was. Then I got over it. :P)

 

[Day 26] HauntoberFest – A Picture of Dorian Gray

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Title: A Picture of Dorian Gray

AuthorOscar Wilde

Page Length: 331 pages

Buy it here: Amazon | B&N | Goodreads

Synopsis: Blond-haired, blue-eyed Dorian Gray is a guileless young man, who arrives one day at the studio of painter Basil Hallward. There he meets the world-wise Lord Henry Wotton, whose hedonistic and cynical view of life is dramatically different from that of the more earnest Hallward. The two men spar in a witty war of words, and Dorian feels inexorably drawn to Wotton’s philosophy of youthful pleasure and amorality. As Hallward completes his portrait, Dorian wishes that he could always remain youthful-and that the painting could bear the burdens of the advancing years.

Wilde’s tale takes the reader into a world in which such things are possible. We meet the unaging Dorian Gray at his leisure, taking advantage of his ability to charm all those around him, and taking his pleasures without heed of the consequences. But one day, after a rash act of cruelty to the woman who loves him, Dorian notices that something in his portrait has changed–a cruel smile has twisted its once-perfect lips.

Adding touches of the gothic and the supernatural to his satiric depiction of upper-class British life, Wilde creates a classic modern myth: the handsome young aristocrat, who remains beautiful while his portrait, the mirror of his soul, withers.

Also included in this volume are “Lord Arthur Savile’s Crime,” “The Canterville Ghost,” “The Sphinx Without a Secret,” and “The Model Millionaire,” which together comprise the most important of Wilde’s short fiction.

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 QUOTE

“You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you never had the courage to commit.”

― Oscar Wilde, A Picture of Dorian Gray

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Why did I chose this book?

 

There is something inherently wrong with seeing A Picture of Dorian Gray as anything other than pure horror. I think we’ve all had that one moment in our lives when something… really… throws us for a loop. Something we hide from others or we hide from ourselves suddenly turning on us and showing us just exactly who we are.

That’s what Dorian’s tale reveals. Human nature. Human… frailty. Human… wickedness or corruption in appearing to be just and true.

I enjoyed this story, not because it was engaging or captivated my attention, but because it slowly unfolded before my eyes, and slowly chopped everyone down to size and made them look at themselves for who they really are, and not who they pretend to be. The wit and intelligence within each line spoke to me as only someone deeply in tune with their thoughts can speak to another person and make them understand.

I’ve always loved reading Wilde’s works because he’s completely unafraid to speak his mind and get to the underbelly of a conversation. He might jest and jibe and throw caution to the wind, but underneath it all he has quite a bit to say. And if you’re willing… you might just learn he’s speaking directly to you.

I’d recommend this to anyone who loved or wanted to get into a solid classic read with a bit of horror and gothic thunder rumbling throughout. Pick up a copy from your local library and get to readin’! You won’t be disappointed.

What I love/like about it:

  • I think I covered this above, but… the intelligence of it.
  • The way it breaks down everyone’s defenses and makes them sees themselves (and everyone else) as they really are – whatever horrible, twisted, ugly thing that might be
  • That it is unabashedly honest, yet still witty as only Wilde can make it. ❤

 

FINAL RATING

Four-half-stars for Brent Weeks

 

Warnings or Triggers

Some disturbing imagery. Basically fine otherwise.


 

ALTERNATIVE TITLES FOR THE DAY

What a strange collection I have for you today… Do tell me if you’ve read any of them. I love two, found one only “okay” and the other hated. Can you guess which?

      

 

 

[Day 23] HauntoberFest – The Beauty

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Title: The Beauty

Author: Aliya Whiteley

Page Length: 104 pages

Buy it here: Amazon | B&N | Goodreads

Synopsis: Somewhere away from the cities and towns, a group of men and boys gather around the fire each night to listen to their stories in the Valley of the Rocks. For when the women are all gone the rest of your life is all there is for everyone. The men are waiting to pass into the night.

The story shall be told to preserve the past. History has gone back to its aural roots and the power of words is strong. Meet Nate, the storyteller, and the new secrets he brings back from the woods. William rules the group with youth and strength, but how long can that last? And what about Uncle Ted, who spends so much time out in the woods?

Hear the tales, watch a myth be formed. For what can man hope to achieve in a world without women? When the past is only grief how long should you hold on to it? What secrets can the forest offer to change it all?

Discover the Beauty.

 

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 “There are two types of understanding in this world. There’s the kind that comes from the reading and the hearing, and it doesn’t penetrate the skin. It is surface knowledge, like a soft blanket that can be placed over the shoulders. And then there’s the understanding that comes from doing. That kind of understanding is not soft. It is water that soaks into the rocks and earth, and makes the seeds grow. It is messy, and painful, and impossible to hold.”

― Aliya Whiteley, The Beauty

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Why did I chose this book?

Hmm, well I think my ranty review pretty much explains why I’d recommend this book for this year’s HauntoberFest challenge.

There are certain levels of disturbing that most people can handle… and there’s this messed up shit. (Understand, I’m complimenting the book, not putting it down. I’m just being COMPLETELY HONEST that it is WEIRD AS FUCK.)

A truly thought-provoking read.

This tiny, unassuming book will throw you for a loop. Mark my words.

 

What I love/like about it:

  • While being quite disturbing, it actually made a great deal of sense. (If you don’t get it, then perhaps come back in a few years and look at it with fresh eyes. I assure you the level at which this book deconstructs gender is mind boggling.)
  • Body horror. Nuff said.
  • Like with Uzumaki, it’s about something that should LEGIT NOT be terrifying. ‘Cept it is — at least in this horror story.
  • The characters. Even when they fuckin pissed me off.
  • That it left me with a discussion long after I had finished reading it. I honestly wanted to DISCUSS it with other people. (Which was TERRIBLE considering that when I first read it, it was an ARC, so most people didn’t even know it existed yet, much less read it. T______T)

 

FINAL RATING

 

Warnings or Triggers

All kinds of disturbing. Imma leave it at that.


 

ALTERNATIVE TITLES FOR THE DAY

Today’s alt!titles are filled with all manner of disturbing, body infesting horrors to keep you up at night. I hope you weren’t planning on eating that mushroom soup…