this book is full of spiders

Genre: Thriller
Page Count: 404 Pages

“We’re totally on the same page here, lets burn this shit down”

David Wong

Let me start by saying David Wong has the power of making a book simultaneously both terrifying and pee your pants hilarious. I didn’t know it was possible, but he accomplishes it with This Book is Full Of Spiders. As someone that never ‘laughs out loud’ while reading I give it the biggest stamp of approval. It is truly unlike any other book in its genre.

This Book is Full Of Spiders is what would happen if you and your mate were suddenly given the responsibility of saving the world, after a you’ve just woken up hung over and you have no clue what you are actually saving it from.

“You haven’t really experienced the full range of human emotion until you’ve cried your eyes out while hanging on for dear life on the back of a dirt bike bouncing across a cornfield in the freezing cold”

The characters are eccentric, flawed, and entirely easy to fall in love with. We follow these unlikely heroes as they attempt to prevent a parasitic spider infection spreading beyond their quirky little town. David, John and Amy are relatable in that they are so human and deal with the storm they are thrust into the way I image most of people would if it happened to us, with bitting sarcasm and a plethora of swear words.

“DID SOMEBODY ORDER SOME FUCKING PRISON BREAK WITH A SIDE OF SHOTGUN?”

John was my favourite character (though Molly the dog is almost tied in this spot), most of my laughter occurred after one of John’s epic one liners. While a bit of an antihero technically, he easily slots into hero status by the end of the novel. 

“I assume your plan didn’t progress beyond this exact moment.”

The writer tells the story in a nonlinear fashion, which really helped add tension and built up the plot to have an explosive end. I frequently found myself exclaiming ‘omg’ as the pieces came together. This narrative technique really made the book stand out for me and is one of the reasons it’s a new favourite for me!

TBIFOS is the second in a trilogy however you don’t have to read them in order, personally I haven’t yet read the first book and I wasn’t lost or confused. Considering how much I enjoyed the book, I will definitely be reading the others in the series!

“Damn it! I knew she was a monster! John! Amy! Listen! Guard your buttholes.”

RATING:

★★★★★

Genre: Fantasy/ Thriller
Pages: 195 Pages

“Where lies the strangling fruit that came from the hand of the sinner I shall bring forth the seeds of the dead”

Book Synopsis

Area X has been cut off from the rest of the world for decades. Nature has reclaimed the last vestiges of human civilisation. The first expedition returned with reports of a pristine, Edenic landscape; the second expedition ended in mass suicide, the third in a hail of gunfire as its members turned on one another. The members of the eleventh expedition returned as shadows of their former selves, and within weeks, all had died of cancer. In the first volume of the Southern Reach trilogy, we join the twelfth expedition. The group is made up of four women: an anthropologist; a surveyor; a psychologist, the de facto leader, and our narrator, the biologist. Their mission is to map the terrain, record all observations of their surroundings and of one another, and, above all, avoid being contaminated by Area X itself.

Not in a long time have I felt so utterly consumed by a book. A fact that is especially impressive when you consider it’s relatively short 195 pages. The atmosphere Vandermeer creates draws you in immediately, the world of Area X turns the reader into a moth pulled swiftly into its flame. I read it while on holiday and as soon as I finished was running around the caravan park commanding people to read it and understand its brilliance.

“I felt as If I could do anything as long as I did not mind being watched”

The Biologist introduces us to a mysterious land, untouched by civilisation for decades, and devoid of any humanoid lifeforms; but is that the truth? We follow our narrator as she discovers that the information she’s been given my not be accurate, and wonders just what this place is that she’s been sent to.

Our narrator is flawed. As all the best characters are, and her introverted and highly observational nature makes her the perfect person to tell the happenings and discoveries of the Twelfth expedition. The book is written in a jornal format, which works brilliantly to build tension as you are reading. Throughout the book you have major ‘dont-go-around-that-corner’ feels. 

If the book was in another volunteers perspective who’s career wasn’t looking beyond things people normally see, I’m sure there wouldn’t be nearly as much exquisite detail. Though, considering how fascinating the book is, I would happily have read the book from each characters perspective.

“Can you really imagine what it was like in those first moments, peering down into that dark space and seeing that? Perhaps you can. Perhaps you’re staring at it right now.

The prose throughout the book is perfectly descriptive and filled with the kind of Stephen King esque bone chilling quotes that you keep with you for a while. The memory of the book itself weighs like a heavy breath on my chest, one that I still feel when I glance at it on the shelf.

I read Annihilation in one sitting, completely unable and unwilling to put it down. I can’t accurately express just how much I felt effected by this book other than to say you are surely missing out should you decide not to read it! The urge to discover the mystery will ensure you race through the book and the spine tingling chill you receive from the events that occur will leave you making sure you door is locked at night! Seriously, read it. Read it now. 

“There shall be in the planting in the shadows a grace and a mercy that shall bloom dark flowers, and their teeth shall devour and sustain and herald the passage of an age”

RATING:

★★★★★

girl in snow

Genre: Crime/Mystery/Thriller
Page Count: 353  pages

“He wondered how a love like that drowned. Or worse, how it died.”

 Danya Kukafka

Last night I had the pleasure of sitting down and finishing this book. Girl in Snow is Danya Kukafka’s debut novel, though reading it you would hardly guess. The elegant prose falls from the book, igniting an intrigue that has you entranced from the first page.

Girl In Snow follows the aftermath of the death of a beloved high school girl named Lucinda Hayes. The small suburb hasn’t been shocked by a crime of this nature in a long time and as is the case when tragedy strikes, the dark secrets that lie under the surface of the sleepy suburb are unwound in this tale.

I have mentioned before that my love of a book is highly reliant on the characters themselves and this book is an excellent example of truly endearing characters. The story is told from the perspectives of our three main characters, Cameron, Jade, and Russ, who together are a collection of misfit characters perfectly woven together by Kukafka.

Cameron

“He’d like to imagine he was one of Michelangelo’s figures, frozen on paper, etched in one position for all eternity”

Cameron was definitely the character I found most endearing and really looked forward to reading about his outlook on the world around him and the people within that world. A classic wallflower, Cameron has been labeled a freak most of his life and as is the case with many teenagers, he struggles not to believe it. The character certainly has a few interesting hobbies (“The game of statue nights” being one) that have you questioning what kind of person he really is, and whether the reader should be sympathetic towards him.

I think many people can empathise with his thought that “He found people fascinating when they thought no one was watching”, however, in his case the question becomes is how much can you innocently watch someone before it becomes something more sinister.

Jade

“Faking shock is easier than faking sadness”

Another character that’s very easy to like is Jade. Exceedingly observant,  Jade and Cameron share the familiar trait of people thinking they veer off the scope of normal and because of this there is a clear kinship between the characters.  Jade is both incredibly witty and intelligent, piecing together links between characters that often left me chanting ‘omg omg’ in my head as the connections unraveled. Her wit also allows for lovely breaks in the prose in which she tells the reader all the things she wishes she could say “What you want to say but can’t without being a dick – A screenplay by Jade Dixon-Burns”.

Russ

“It was paralyzing and perfect, crippling in its singularity. Here is what I have been alive for all this time, Russ thought. This touch”

Personally, I found Russ the hardest to empathise with throughout the book, though this is likely Kukafka’s intent, A cop not quite sure of his place in the world from his marriage to his job. He is seemly lost in the grand scheme of things. About halfway through the book when Russ delved more into his friendship with Lee was where I saw more life in the character and grew more interested in his telling of the story.

Overall I thoroughly enjoyed this book, I think anyone would with its intricate twists and wholely endearing characters. The stand out being Danya’s delicate and detailed prose. I truly hope this debut novel is followed by another as I would love to read more by this brilliant author.

I recommend it for any fans of Crime, mystery or thriller novels, and for people that want a book they cant put down!

“Cameron wanted to tell Mr. O about loss – the hissing sound it made, like air drained from a tire, how that sound could continue forever if you let it – but maybe Mr. O already knew.”

RATING:

★★★★

the girl who loved tom gordon the girl who loved tom gordon

Genre: Horror/Thriller
Page Count: 264  pages

“The skin of the world is woven of stingers”

Stephen King

Hello Readers!

I hope everyone is having a great weekend, today I will be reviewing the fantastic Stephen King novel I picked up while travelling in Japan. I hadn’t heard of this King before and was drawn in by the synopsis immediately.

When Trisha McFarland’s divorced mom takes her and her brother on a hike up the Appalachian Trail, the nine year old ducks off the path to pee and gets lost. Alone in the forest and scared of the dark, Trisha winds up stumbling aimlessly through the woods for nine days, wandering farther and farther from civilisation as she attempts to make her way back home, disappearing deep into mysterious darkness of the wilderness. The real question is, is she alone out there?

This book was especially and terrifyingly relevant considering all of the current investigations into people, especially young children, getting lost and sometimes not found, off into the wilds of North America.

“The world had teeth and it could bite you with them anytime it wanted.”

Stephen King

This quote really defines how you feel following Trisha’s journey into the forest and her questioning what’s out there in the dark waiting for her, watching her in the woods.

The whole book there is this spooky look over your shoulder feeling that never goes away, which adds to the build up of the book. Trisha’s character is so strong and endearing and I really loved her thought process throughout the book. I’m really hoping she appears again in another King novel because she was truly magnificent! She is one of Kings best written young characters and I doubt anyone will have trouble getting hooked on this page turner purely because of her.

After finishing this book I certainly have no desire to go on a hike through the forest for at least a few months, I’ll stay far away from the God of the Lost!

RATING:

★★★★

I believe this novel is really under rated and I hope you pick up a copy after reading this because it’s absolutely worth your time!

 

nocturnal readers box july

It’s been another amazing month for the Nocturnal Readers Box! This months theme was ‘The Feast’ and it certainly lived up the name.

The Nocturnal Readers box is a Monthly subscription box for fans of speculative fiction, it features one new release and one previously released book and a bunch of bookish goodies relating to the theme of that month.

nocturnal readers box july

The print this month was this artwork entitled “The Night of the Vampire” by Michael Broom, It gets scarier the longer you look at it I swear 😳

nocturnal readers box july

This month’s previous release was Bleed by Ed Kurtz and sounds really intriguing, I also really love the cover, it’s another book to add to my black and red editions.

nocturnal readers box july nocturnal readers box july

This months release is Come to Dust by Bracken MacLeod, and mine was signed! 😍

nocturnal readers box july

A Silence Of The Lambs mini wine glass! I love the quote they chose

nocturnal readers box july

A NOS4A2 license plate! I’ll definitely be using this as a decoration this Christmas

nocturnal readers box july

Delightfully creepy bookmarks

nocturnal readers box july

Pin inspired by Nick Cutter’s The Troop, I haven’t read this yet but the pin has me intrigued

nocturnal readers box july

A Jaws keyring that is also a bottle-opener! The best combination cool but useful merch

I really enjoyed this months box, which is no surprise as Jessia and Vincent always place such care in choosing seriously awesome items for us every month!

The theme for August is ‘Infested and Infected’, there are going to be three books this month and it’s going to be the most valuable box they’ve had! There are still boxes left so if you are as into zombies and horror themed goodies as I am you should do yourself a favour and pick one up!

 

*I purchase this box myself and all opinions are my own*