The Legend of My Visit to Sleepy Hollow

A few weeks ago, a couple friends of mine and I took a train ride to Sleepy Hollow, New York to see the fall colors (and to visit the cemetery that holds Washington Irving), and I was not disappointed. Though I’ve never read The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, but it was interesting to walk around and explore the town anyway.

Sleepy Hollow has really embraced its reputation, and the Headless Horseman is depicted all over town, even on the police cars.

 

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But the most interesting part of my visit was the cemetery. It’s there that Washington Irving was buried.

 

 

 

The rest of the cemetery was beautiful, especially with all the fall colors throughout.

 

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We tried to get a picture of the famous bridge that the Headless Horseman rode over, but as it wasn’t that photogenic, I got a picture of this scenic bridge instead. (But we can just pretend!)

 

 

 

The east coast is known for its beautiful fall colors, and it was nice to get out of the city and see them. Especially because it was a bookish trip!

 

 

 

Luckily for me, I live in NYC where there are plenty of bookish locations to visit!

 

 

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Time for more introductions

Hello lovely book readers! My name is Emily and I’m the newest Bookish blogger to grace your screen. I’m going to answer some questions so you can get to know me quickly and efficiently.

E. Coleman Head Shot

Name: Emily

Age: 28

Location: Brooklyn

Favorite Genre: Fantasy, YA

Favorite Author: Neil Gaiman, Alice Hoffman, Joe Hill, Holly Black, Matt Kindt, Brian K Vaughan, Brandon Sanderson (we all know there isn’t only one favorite author)

Where Do You Buy/Get Your Books: Working at Barnes and Noble allows me the employee discount so I frequently buy from B&N. I share books with other book loving friends (not the signed books though!).

Favorite Series: East of West, The Curse Workers, all of the series by Tamora Pierce

Why Do You Love to Read: My mom is a librarian so I grew up surrounded by books. Reading lets me visit worlds and meet people I wouldn’t meet otherwise; be in situations I won’t ever be in.

How Do You Organize Your Bookshelf: My comics are organized randomly, how I think looks nice. The books are all organized alphabetically by author’s last name. Any author I have multiple books from, those books are organized by publication date, even if it disrupts a series. It’s cool to see when each book was published.

Favorite Place to Read: I have an hour train ride to and from work so I get a lot of reading done then. Night is when I read mostly comics. It’s nice to break up the mediums like that, prose during the day and sequential art at night.

Hobbies: My fiancé and I have turned into foodies since moving to NY. We try new restaurants, new food, and have been teaching ourselves to cook.

Currently Reading: Shadows of Self – Brandon Sanderson and The Unwritten – Mike Carey

Of course I have a smattering of social media you can find me at. I have my own personal blog called Jumping Shelves you can follow. On Instagram you can find my personal account under @kingjezebel, my blog account under @jumpingshelves, and our cooking account under @castironbae. On Twitter you can find my personal account under @kindjezebel and my blog account under @jumpingshelves. I can’t wait to get started with The Bookish Blog and interact with other book worms. 

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Review of The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey

The Girl with All the Gifts

M.R. Carey

June 19th 2014 by Orbit

ISBN13: 9780356500157

460 pages

BUY IT

Rating: ★★★★☆


I was pushed to read this book by a couple of my coworkers. I say pushed because I would never read a book about zombies on my own. It’s just not my genre. As much as I love fantasy, I’m never tempted by zombie or vampire books (although the latter might have been influenced by the Twilight series). Nonetheless, I decided to give it a chance, and I’m very glad I did.

I think it’s good to step outside of your comfort zone when reading, and that’s exactly what this year was all about for me. I was pleasantly surprised by how much I did like this book, though it was never something I would have picked up on my own.

The book is told from five different viewpoints: Melanie, EddieParks, Caroline Caldwell, Helen Justineau, and Lieutenant Gallagher. I love any book that gives me more than one point of view, so this was a major plus for me. I liked Melanie’s chapters the best because she’s young and full of wonder. She was born after the infestation and all she knows of the worldis what she’s learnedin the classroom with Miss Justineau, whom she worships. She knows about the “hungries,” as they’re called, but having never been outside, she doesn’t realize the extent of the situation (or that she’s one of the hungries herself).

Though Melanie’s chapters were my favorite, I did like the variety of the characters. Oftentimes when one writer writes from many different points of view, they can all begin to sound the same, but this was not the case for TGWATG. Each character, for better or worse, is totally their own person. From the protective firmness of Sgt. Parks to the intelligent coldness of Dr. Caldwell, each character brings something to the table.

I think a lot of people will be pleased with the ending too. I won’t give anything away, but it was very difficult to predict. I would definitely recommend this book! And bonus: they made it into a movie!

The Monster Mash…

I was typing at my desk late one night, when my eyes beheld an eerie site. For the TBR Pile from my bookshelf began to rise, and suddenly, to my surprise, it did the Mash!

It did the MONSTER MASH!

I always tend to overwhelm myself during the month of October. I want to read every spine-tingling, bone-chilling stay up all night horror story that I can get my hands on. I want to invite everything that goes bump in the night into my candlelit room. But this all-encompassing desire often finds me slogging through or merely skimming books I’m not enjoying just so that I can get to the next book on my list.

Last year, I shared a list of Five Haunted House Novels to Read When You’re Home Alone. And while I think the list holds up. It’s a tad limiting, no? So this year, I’ve got a handful of non-classic monstrous tomes to peruse if you’re hoping to give yourself a thrill this Halloween.

 

Vampires

And I Darken by Kiersten White

GoodReads Synopsis: No one expects a princess to be brutal. And Lada Dragwlya likes it that way. Ever since she and her gentle younger brother, Radu, were wrenched from their homeland of Wallachia and abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman courts, Lada has known that being ruthless is the key to survival. She and Radu are doomed to act as pawns in a vicious game, an unseen sword hovering over their every move. For the lineage that makes them special also makes them targets.

Lada despises the Ottomans and bides her time, planning her vengeance for the day when she can return to Wallachia and claim her birthright. Radu longs only for a place where he feels safe. And when they meet Mehmed, the defiant and lonely son of the sultan, Radu feels that he’s made a true friend—and Lada wonders if she’s finally found someone worthy of her passion.

But Mehmed is heir to the very empire that Lada has sworn to fight against—and that Radu now considers home. Together, Lada, Radu, and Mehmed form a toxic triangle that strains the bonds of love and loyalty to the breaking point.

 

Zombies

The Girl With All the Gifts by M.R. Carey

GoodReads Synopsis: Melanie is a very special girl. Dr. Caldwell calls her "our little genius."

Every morning, Melanie waits in her cell to be collected for class. When they come for her, Sergeant Parks keeps his gun pointing at her while two of his people strap her into the wheelchair. She thinks they don't like her. She jokes that she won't bite, but they don't laugh.

Melanie loves school. She loves learning about spelling and sums and the world outside the classroom and the children's cells. She tells her favorite teacher all the things she'll do when she grows up. Melanie doesn't know why this makes Miss Justineau look sad.

 

 

Witches

A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray

GoodReads Synopsis: Sixteen-year-old Gemma has had an unconventional upbringing in India, until the day she foresees her mother's death in a black, swirling vision that turns out to be true. Sent back to England, she is enrolled at Spence, a girls' academy with a mysterious burned-out East Wing. There Gemma is snubbed by powerful Felicity, beautiful Pippa, and even her own dumpy roommate Ann, until she blackmails herself and Ann into the treacherous clique. Gemma is distressed to find that she has been followed from India by Kartik, a beautiful young man who warns her to fight off the visions. Nevertheless, they continue, and one night she is led by a child-spirit to find a diary that reveals the secrets of a mystical Order. The clique soon finds a way to accompany Gemma to the other-world realms of her visions "for a bit of fun" and to taste the power they will never have as Victorian wives, but they discover that the delights of the realms are overwhelmed by a menace they cannot control. Gemma is left with the knowledge that her role as the link between worlds leaves her with a mission to seek out the "others" and rebuild the Order.

 

 

Demons

Horns by Joe Hill

GoodReads Synopsis: Ignatius Perrish spent the night drunk and doing terrible things. He woke up the next morning with a thunderous hangover, a raging headache . . . and a pair of horns growing from his temples.

At first Ig thought the horns were a hallucination, the product of a mind damaged by rage and grief. He had spent the last year in a lonely, private purgatory, following the death of his beloved, Merrin Williams, who was raped and murdered under inexplicable circumstances. A mental breakdown would have been the most natural thing in the world. But there was nothing natural about the horns, which were all too real.

But Merrin's death damned all that. The only suspect in the crime, Ig was never charged or tried. And he was never cleared. In the court of public opinion in Gideon, New Hampshire, Ig is and always will be guilty because his rich and connected parents pulled strings to make the investigation go away. Nothing Ig can do, nothing he can say, matters. Everyone, it seems, including God, has abandoned him. Everyone, that is, but the devil inside…

 

Ghosts and Spirits

The Diviners Series (The Diviners & Lair of Dreams) by Libba Bray

Full disclosure: I think you should all go out and read as much Libba Bray as possible. She’s AMAZING

GoodReads Synopsis of ‘The Diviners’: Evie O’Neill has been exiled from her boring old hometown and shipped off to the bustling streets of New York City—and she is pos-i-tute-ly ecstatic. It’s 1926, and New York is filled with speakeasies, Ziegfeld girls, and rakish pickpockets. The only catch is that she has to live with her uncle Will and his unhealthy obsession with the occult.

Evie worries he’ll discover her darkest secret: a supernatural power that has only brought her trouble so far. But when the police find a murdered girl branded with a cryptic symbol and Will is called to the scene, Evie realizes her gift could help catch a serial killer.

As Evie jumps headlong into a dance with a murderer, other stories unfold in the city that never sleeps. A young man named Memphis is caught between two worlds. A chorus girl named Theta is running from her past. A student named Jericho hides a shocking secret. And unknown to all, something dark and evil has awakened.

 

GoodReads Synopsis of ‘Lair of Dreams’: The longing of dreams draws the dead, and this city holds many dreams.

After a supernatural showdown with a serial killer, Evie O’Neill has outed herself as a Diviner. With her uncanny ability to read people’s secrets, she’s become a media darling, earning the title “America’s Sweetheart Seer.” Everyone’s in love with the city’s newest It Girl…everyone except the other Diviners.

Piano-playing Henry DuBois and Chinatown resident Ling Chan are two Diviners struggling to keep their powers a secret—for they can walk in dreams. And while Evie is living the high life, victims of a mysterious sleeping sickness are turning up across New York City.

As Henry searches for a lost love and Ling strives to succeed in a world that shuns her, a malevolent force infects their dreams. And at the edges of it all lurks a man in a stovepipe hat who has plans that extend farther than anyone can guess…As the sickness spreads, can the Diviners descend into the dreamworld to save the city?

 

Werewolves

Blood and Chocolate by Annette Curtis Klause

Vivian Gandillon relishes the change, the sweet, fierce ache that carries her from girl to wolf. At sixteen, she is beautiful and strong, and all the young wolves are on her tail. But Vivian still grieves for her dead father; her pack remains leaderless and in disarray, and she feels lost in the suburbs of Maryland. She longs for a normal life. But what is normal for a werewolf?

Then Vivian falls in love with a human, a meat-boy. Aiden is kind and gentle, a welcome relief from the squabbling pack. He’s fascinated by magic, and Vivian longs to reveal herself to him. Surely he would understand her and delight in the wonder of her dual nature, not fear her as an ordinary human would.

Vivian’s divided loyalties are strained further when a brutal murder threatens to expose the pack. Moving between two worlds, she does not seem to belong in either. What is she really—human or beast? Which tastes sweeter—blood or chocolate?

 

Humans

We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

Merricat Blackwood lives on the family estate with her sister Constance and her Uncle Julian. Not long ago there were seven Blackwoods—until a fatal dose of arsenic found its way into the sugar bowl one terrible night. Acquitted of the murders, Constance has returned home, where Merricat protects her from the curiosity and hostility of the villagers. Their days pass in happy isolation until cousin Charles appears. Only Merricat can see the danger, and she must act swiftly to keep Constance from his grasp.

Nobody is better at making you fear the people around than Shirley Jackson. While her stories are—as my students put it—super old school, there is something so unsettlingly true in the way she portrays the darkness that can exist in a person.

 

The Bad Seed by William March

GoodReads Synopsis: What happens to ordinary families into whose midst a child serial killer is born? This is the question at the center of William March's classic thriller. After its initial publication in 1954, the book went on to become a million–copy bestseller, a wildly successful Broadway show, and a Warner Brothers film. The spine–tingling tale of little Rhoda Penmark had a tremendous impact on the thriller genre and generated a whole perdurable crop of creepy kids. Today, The Bad Seed remains a masterpiece of suspense that's as chilling, intelligent, and timely as ever before.

 

 

 

THE PATRIARCHY (heheheheheh…)

Rosemary’s Baby by Ira Levin

GoodReads Synopsis: Rosemary and Guy Woodhouse, an ordinary young couple, settle into a New York City apartment, unaware that the elderly neighbors and their bizarre group of friends have taken a disturbing interest in them. But by the time Rosemary discovers the horrifying truth, it may be far too late

Rosemary’s Baby plays on the feminist horror themes of the invasion of the sacred space and the loss of bodily autonomy. It was originally published in 1967 and draws clear parallels to issues that were central to the women’s liberation movement. The Stepford Wives is similarly connected to this movement as it trades in the pressures and punishing standards society places on women, as well as the fear that regardless of what a woman achieves, her primary value is her appearance and obedience.

 

The Stepford Wives by Ira Levin

GoodRead Synopsis: For Joanna, her husband, Walter, and their children, the move to beautiful Stepford seems almost too good to be true. It is. For behind the town's idyllic facade lies a terrible secret -- a secret so shattering that no one who encounters it will ever be the same.

At once a masterpiece of psychological suspense and a savage commentary on a media-driven society that values the pursuit of youth and beauty at all costs, The Stepford Wives is a novel so frightening in its final implications that the title itself has earned a place in the American lexicon.

 

 

…and of course…

David Pumpkins!

Happy Halloween and Sweet Screams…