New YA Horror Roundup just in time for Halloween

Note: I received advanced copies of all titles from Netgalley except Sanctum.  All of these titles have been released except Creed, which comes out November 8, 2014.

I was quite pleased to discover so many YA horror titles coming out over the summer and fall!  YA horror is my favorite genre, but in recent years it’s been dominated by paranormal romance which is totally NOT THE SAME THING.  (Not that I don’t enjoy it, but I like a good horror story minus any romance elements whatsover).

If you’re looking for a book that reads like your favorite horror movie, take your pick!  Welcome to the Dark House follows seven strangers sent to live in a house owned by their favorite horror movie director.  There’s a nightmare carnival and everyone has a dark past…  Amity by Micol Ostow is eerily similar to the “Amityville Horror” movies, while Creed by Trisha Leaver is more like “Children of the Corn.”  If you’re more into movies like “The Ring,” try The Girl from the Well by Rin Chupeco.  Did you enjoy “Urban Legend”?  Mary: The Summoning by Hillary Monahan will make you think twice about chanting Bloody Mary into the mirror.

All of the above books were a lot of fun to read.  My favorite would have to be The Girl from the Well.  “The Ring” is the one movie I can’t watch before I go to bed!  I learned about the origins of this Japanese ghost, and I loved how Okiku was kind of a ghost-Dexter.  The narration of a story by a ghost was very cool.

If historical horror is your thing, there’s Of Monsters and Men by Jessica Verday.  This was like a Poe / Jekyll & Hyde / Dr. Moreau mash-up, all those gothic horror novels pulled together in a cool way.

Finally, Sanctum is the second book in the Asylum series.  The photographs add that certain creep factor (even though you know they’re not real photos, like in Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children).  Also, it’s like horror writers know me or something, because this also had a creepy carnival/circus (I don’t have to tell you how excited I am for American Horror Story: Freak Show!).

All of these books were fast, enjoyable reads for the Halloween season!


and now for something not writing-related

By which I mean my thoughts on the new season of American Horror Story!

  1. The setting – I love it.  Asylums in the 1960’s are the setting for many of my favorite novels about crazy people (see this post for a list).  Plus it’s clear that they are basing this particular asylum on Danvers State Hospital, one of the most famous abandoned asylums in my area – of course, now it’s been demolished and turned into condos, but before that, it looked like this:Danvers State Hospital
  2. Jessica Lange is still awesome.  The fake-Boston accent doesn’t suit her as well as the Southern accent, but I’m probably biased.  The only actors who can really pull off a Boston accent are actually from Boston (so basically Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, and Mark Wahlberg).  And yeah, her character this round doesn’t have as many great lines as Constance did, but she does sneak in a barb or two.
  3. Bloody Face is the stupidest serial killer name I’ve ever heard.
  4. Bare bum total for 2 episodes is 7.
  5. So… Adam Levine is already dead?
  6. I miss Tate… the old Tate… although this one may yet grow on me.
  7. I’m struggling a bit to see where this season is going.  Last season, you already knew the concept going in: family moves into haunted house, will family survive or leave or die there?  Here, I’m not sure what they’re moving towards, or how this might possibly be related to season 1.
  8. Best line so far: “Show me your mossy banks.”

I’m not sure, but…

…is one hour of writing in the middle of a 3-hour “American Horror Story” marathon good?

Still working on Dreamwalkers, and I wrote about 1,000 words.  Janina was on a roll so I had to keep writing (instead of immediately turning on the next episode, my remote control finger was getting itchy) a little past the hour.

Oh, how I love this show and I can only desperately hope that the new season lives up to my unrealistic expectations.  Knowing all the secrets from Season 1 has made rewatching it pretty cool.  I love how all the storylines and character relationships are woven together.  I love how each person (and ghost) has their own psychological demons that influence their actions.  I can feel, in that mid-October way, that my Nanowrimo novel is going to be very much influenced by “American Horror Story.”

Except I think my story will be about the circus…

Also, sent out a few more queries today for Hitchhikers.