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New Spooky October Reads - Halloween 2023

October is upon us! Since it is now officially peak spooky season, I've put together a list of releases that are gracing up this month. From horror erotica to dark fantasy and haunted house narratives, there's something for every reader.

Silencia - Vivien Rainn

If you're a fan of horror erotica in a unique setting, then Silencia is the book for you. The highly anticipated sequel to Solita, Silencia is set to kick up Sadie's story a notch with plenty of scares and spice.

Sadie’s once grief-ridden nightmares have twisted into dreams darker than she’s ever known now that her life is forever entwined with the demon named Silas who bears the weight of countless sin.

Sin she longs to upturn.

Sin he longs to bury.

For every secret of his past he refuses to surrender, Sadie is driven deeper into these sinister dreams. Deeper and deeper she delves until she finds the greatest temptation of them all; the open arms of the only soul who knows the truth.

A phantom. A woman. A murdered lover.

She offers Sadie everything her heart desires to see, and names only one

Let me in.

The temptation is too great, and Sadie enters into this garden of earthly delights, tasting, drinking, feasting upon all of Silas’ sin until she is blinded by fragrant blooms—but she must beware the serpents coiled beneath.

For a snake cleaved in two can still sink its fangs deep into the veins; and once the venom of desire has spread through the blood, a deadly dance follows suit.

And there is no cure, there is no balm, there is no escape from death’s desire.

When Ghosts Call Us Home - Katya de Becerra

Katya's When Ghost Calls Us Home has all the hallmarks of a haunted house story with a found footage twist. It's perfect for anyone who wants something new mixed in with their classic haunted house narrative.

Haunting of Hill House meets found-footage horror in this edge-of-your-seat thriller that explores the power of family ties and the trauma that lurks there.

When Sophia Galich was twelve, she starred in her older sister Layla’s amateur horror movie Vermillion, which recorded raw footage of her very real reactions to scenes her sister concocted in their old Californian house on the coast―Cashore House.

In the years after the film’s release, Sophia’s relationship with her sister became more strained, while her memories of the now-infamous house fueled her nightmares. Vermillion amassed an army of fanatical fans who speculated about the film’s hidden messages, and it was rumored that Layla made a pact with the devil―her soul in exchange for fame and arcane knowledge. Sophia dismissed this as gossip…until Layla disappeared.

Now, Sophia must study the trail of clues Layla has left behind, returning to the very place where it all began. As she gets closer and closer to Cashore House’s haunted heart, she must once again confront the ghosts of her childhood. But the house won’t reveal its secrets without a fight

I Feed Her To The Beast And The Beast Is Me - Jamison Shea

Love slow burn horror from the point of view of a 'villian'? I Feed Her To the Beast is a dark and twisting tale that is sure to leave readers speechless.

There will be blood.

Ace of Spades meets House of Hollow in this villain origin story.

Laure Mesny is a perfectionist with an axe to grind. Despite being constantly overlooked in the elite and cutthroat world of the Parisian ballet, she will do anything to prove that a Black girl can take center stage. To level the playing field, Laure ventures deep into the depths of the Catacombs and strikes a deal with a pulsating river of blood.

The primordial power Laure gains promises influence and adoration, everything she’s dreamed of and worked toward. With retribution on her mind, she surpasses her bitter and privileged peers, leaving broken bodies behind her on her climb to stardom.

But even as undeniable as she is, Laure is not the only monster around. And her vicious desires make her a perfect target for slaughter. As she descends into madness and the mystifying underworld beneath her, she is faced with the ultimate continue to break herself for scraps of validation or succumb to the darkness that wants her exactly as she is—monstrous heart and all. That is, if the god-killer doesn’t catch her first.

From debut author Jamison Shea comes I Feed Her to the Beast and the Beast Is Me , a slow-burn horror that lifts a veil on the institutions that profit on exclusion and the toll of giving everything to a world that will never love you back.

Unholy Terrors - Lyndall Clipstone

Dark fantasy romance lovers rejoice! Lyndall is a pro at creating haunting and vivid fantasy worlds and Unholy Terrors is no exception.

A bloodstained tale of a girl torn between her vows and her heart, where falling in love may be the deepest sin of all…

Everline Blackthorn has devoted her life to the wardens—a sect of holy warriors who guard against monsters known as the vespertine.

When a series of strange omens occur, Everline disobeys orders to investigate, and uncovers a startling truth in the form of Ravel Severin: a rogue vespertine who reveals the monsters have secrets of their own.

Ravel promises the help she needs— for a price. Vespertine magic requires blood, and if Everline wants Ravel to guide across the dangerous moorland, she will have to allow him to feed from her.

It’s a sin for a warden to feed a vespertine— let alone love one— and as Everline and Ravel travel further across the moorland, she realizes the question isn’t whether she will survive the journey, but if she will return unchanged. Or if she wants to.

The Reformatory - Tananarive Due

Historical horror fiction is always a treat (in my opinion anyway) and combined with the talent that is Tananarive due, The Reformatory is a must-read this spooky season.

A gripping, page-turning novel set in Jim Crow Florida that follows Robert Stephens Jr. as he’s sent to a segregated reform school that is a chamber of terrors where he sees the horrors of racism and injustice, for the living, and the dead.

Gracetown, Florida

June 1950

Twelve-year-old Robbie Stephens, Jr., is sentenced to six months at the Gracetown School for Boys, a reformatory, for kicking the son of the largest landowner in town in defense of his older sister, Gloria. So begins Robbie’s journey further into the terrors of the Jim Crow South and the very real horror of the school they call The Reformatory.

Robbie has a talent for seeing ghosts, or haints. But what was once a comfort to him after the loss of his mother has become a window to the truth of what happens at the reformatory. Boys forced to work to remediate their so-called crimes have gone missing, but the haints Robbie sees hint at worse things. Through his friends Redbone and Blue, Robbie is learning not just the rules but how to survive. Meanwhile, Gloria is rallying every family member and connection in Florida to find a way to get Robbie out before it’s too late.

The Reformatory is a haunting work of historical fiction written as only American Book Award–winning author Tananarive Due could, by piecing together the life of the relative her family never spoke of and bringing his tragedy and those of so many others at the infamous Dozier School for Boys to the light in this riveting novel.

The September House - Carissa Orlando

I've seen this book pop up everywhere and I'm so excited for its release. Another haunted house novel but with an intriguing main character that really makes it stand out from the rest.

A woman is determined to stay in her dream home even after it becomes a haunted nightmare in this compulsively readable, twisty, and layered debut novel.

When Margaret and her husband Hal bought the large Victorian house on Hawthorn Street—for sale at a surprisingly reasonable price—they couldn’t believe they finally had a home of their own. Then they discovered the hauntings. Every September, the walls drip blood. The ghosts of former inhabitants appear, and all of them are terrified of something that lurks in the basement. Most people would flee.

Margaret is not most people.

Margaret is staying. It’s her house. But after four years Hal can’t take it anymore, and he leaves abruptly. Now, he’s not returning calls, and their daughter Katherine—who knows nothing about the hauntings—arrives, intent on looking for her missing father. To make things worse, September has just begun, and with every attempt Margaret and Katherine make at finding Hal, the hauntings grow more harrowing, because there are some secrets the house needs to keep.

A Haunting on The Hill - Elizabeth Hand

This one is for the Shirley Jackson fans! It's another haunted house novel but I had to include it because I'm so in love with the cover!

From three-time Shirley Jackson, World Fantasy, and Nebula Award-winning author Elizabeth Hand comes the first-ever authorized novel to return to the world of Shirley Jackson's The Haunting of Hill House: a suspenseful, contemporary, and terrifying story of longing and isolation all its own.

Holly Sherwin has been a struggling playwright for years, but now, after receiving a grant to develop her play, The Witch of Edmonton, she may finally be close to her big break. All she needs is time and space to bring her vision to life. When she stumbles across Hill House on a weekend getaway upstate, she is immediately taken in by the ornate, if crumbling, gothic mansion, nearly hidden outside a remote village. It’s enormous, old, and ever-so eerie—the perfect place to develop and rehearse her play.

Despite her own hesitations, Holly’s girlfriend, Nisa, agrees to join Holly in renting the house out for a month, and soon a troupe of actors, each with ghosts of their own, arrive. Yet as they settle in, the house’s peculiarities are made known: strange creatures stalk the grounds, disturbing sounds echo throughout the halls, and time itself seems to shift. All too soon, Holly and her friends find themselves at odds not just with one another, but with the house itself. It seems something has been waiting in Hill House all these years, and it no longer intends to walk alone . . .

Agnes and Cat - Claire L. Smith

Obligatory self-promotion time. Agnes and Cat will be out October 14th. It's fae folklore and body horror galore!

In 1981, eleven-year-old Agnes Hellaire lives with her troubled parents in the dark Redwood Forest. As her parents' marriage continues to crumble, Agnes is approached by a magical black cat that is more than it seems. It offers to solve all her problems, and she gladly accepts. However, as people close to Agnes begin to disappear; she realises there's something dangerous lurking in the trees.

Over twenty years later, Agnes is infamous as the lone survivor of a ruthless mass murderer that was never caught. Despite the nightmare of her childhood, she has managed to find some semblance of peace. Until the killings suddenly resume, and another young child emerges from the forest, covered in blood.

As she slowly begins to descend into madness, Agnes begins to realize that Cat's 'help' came with a price she is unable to pay and that the dead bodies will not stop until she fulfils her side of their deal.



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