Sunday, December 22, 2013

R.L. Stine Book of the Week: Silent Night 3

Rich, snobby Reva Dalby wants a little fame for Christmas. And since her daddy owns Dalby's Department Store, she can have whatever she wants. Someone else will always pay. Except this year Reva goes too far. Now someone is watching her. When she's sleeping and when she's awake...until she's dead.

My Thoughts:

Silent Night 3 may not be as good as the first book, but at least it's not as awful as the second one. The book is fairly predictable - I knew the identity of the killer a few chapters in - but I guess a 26-year-old who has read a lot of horror should be able to easily figure out the ending of a book written for children and teens. There was a second twist at the end that surprised me, though. 

The plot isn't the most exciting. Reva is in college now and has brought her roommate, Grace, home for the holidays. Unfortunately, Grace's abusive ex-boyfriend won't stop calling and she's paranoid that he will show up and kill her. Meanwhile, Reva's poor cousin, Pam, has designed scarves with her friend, Willow, and wants to sell them at Dalby's Department Store. Naturally, Reva takes all the credit for them and arranges a fashion show at Dalby's to create buzz about the scarves.

Nothing bad happens to Reva in this book. In the first one, she's the victim of horrible pranks and in the second one, her arm is broken, but in this one, nothing! It's disappointing since I enjoy when a bitchy character like Reva gets her comeuppance, but it was still fun when Reva said or did mean things. Overall, Reva is an entertaining character, even though she's snotty and unlikeable.

I recommend reading the first Silent Night book and skipping the two sequels.

Rating: 3/5

PG-13 Gore: As she tried to catch her balance, she felt something sticky under her shoes. She glanced down.

A pool of blood had formed around Traci's feet.

Dark red blood, spreading out in a circle. 

Reva clamped her hands tighter against her mouth and closed her eyes. I'm stepping in it, I'm stepping in her blood!

Then she opened her eyes. Blood? But where did it come from? Traci had been strangled, right?

Where did the blood come from?

Shaking all over, Reva examined Traci's body. And saw the support pole. The pole that held up a mannequin. Jammed through Traci's back. 

Someone had murdered Traci! Strangled her, Then hung her from the pole like a plastic mannequin!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

R.L. Stine Book of the Week: Silent Night 2

Sure, she promised to be nicer after last year's horrors. But a rich, spoiled girl like Reva Dalby always thinks she can have anything—or anyone—she wants, and never, never pay.

But now it's payback time. Someone is out to kidnap Reva.

This year, Santa is bringing Reva a little holiday fear. And just around the corner is the biggest, most gruesome Christmas present of all—murder. And it's all hers!

My thoughts:

I enjoyed Silent Night when I read it a couple years ago, but unfortunately Silent Night 2 is the typical lousy sequel. 

The plot is very dull. A broke 18-year-old and his girlfriend attempt to kidnap Reva and use the ransom money to buy Christmas presents. Most of the book is comprised of failed attempts to kidnap Reva and nothing remotely scary or exciting happens. There are also plenty of chapters where Reva is bitchy to customers while she works at her father's department store, Dalby's, which is a bit entertaining, but not enough to redeem the book. Reva's cousin, Pam, is working at Dalby's again as well, despite the fact that she tried to rob it in the last book. I guess her uncle felt sorry for Pam because her family is poor and he's a millionaire? 

Silent Night 2 is too predictable: kidnappers tie Reva and her cousin Pam up, Pam loosens the ropes and they hide from the kidnappers, FBI shows up to save them. 

Also, where's the Santa from the cover of the book?! That actually might've been an entertaining book. I would choose a killer Santa story over a kidnapping story any day.

Rating: 1/5

PG-13 Gore:  With a loud groan he jumped up quickly and lumbered into the open elevator.

Reva shut her eyes tight. She heard Danny scream all the way down.

The scream ended four floors below in a sickening splat.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

Hope you all have a great Halloween! This is the costume I wore to work today. It looked pretty cool but it was really hard to eat with all that fake blood and glue stuck to my face. I only had time to watch two horror movies tonight: All Hallows' Eve and Halloween.

How are you spending your Halloween?

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Game Review: The Simpsons: Tapped Out Treehouse of Horror XXIV Event

It's no secret that I love The Simpsons (see previous post) and I'm a total Simpsons: Tapped Out addict. I hadn't played it in a few months (I decided to cut back after spending countless hours playing it), but I wanted to check out the Treehouse of Horror XXIV Event. I had to delete five apps to have enough space on my phone for the update, but it was totally worth it.

The appearance of the game has changed to be more spooky for Halloween. Springfield is shadowy, leaves are falling, the trees are dead, there's eerie music with intermittent screaming and bats squeaking and ghosts float around town.

The ghosts are an integral part of the Halloween update. When you tap them (or a character possessed by one), you earn Ghostly Organofluid Outflow (GOO) and Gremlins. If you get enough GOO, you can win prizes:
GOO can also be earned through tasks with certain characters - the kids go trick-or-treating, Homer deals with ghosts, Marge tidies up ghosts and Mr. Burns eliminates ghosts. The Gremlins can also find GOO when you release them in your neighbours' Springfields.

There are also community prizes to be won when enough GOO is collected to reach the community target:
  • First Church of Lard Lad
  • Clawing Zombie
  • Ghost Bomb
  • Frog Prince
  • King Homer's Skyscraper

If the GOO prizes aren't enough, there are tons of other Treehouse of Horror content to purchase with money or donuts such as Boobarella, Bad Dream House, Devil Flanders costume, The Raven, Talking Krusty Doll, a pumpkin patch and more!

In addition to the prizes and the spooky atmosphere, there are a few other neat aspects of the update. In Halloween quest, "The Ghost in the Machine-based App", you build the Gypsy Fortune Teller Shop. And the ghosts of Maude Flanders, Frank Grimes (or "Grimey," as he liked to be called) and James Bont also make appearances.

If you're a fan of The Simpsons (especially Treehouse of Horror) and don't already have this app, you should definitely get it. Feel feel to friend me on Tapped Out at melhelwig847.

Monday, October 7, 2013

TV Review: The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror XXIV

I always look forward to The Simpsons' annual "Treehouse of Horror" episode, but especially this week because I needed something to get my mind off the absence of Breaking Bad.

There has been a lot of hype surrounding "Treehouse of Horror XXIV" because Guillermo Del Toro directed the couch gag. It was released online last week as a teaser for the episode. I've watched it twice now and I still don't think I noticed all the horror references. While Bart writes "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy" on the chalkboard, Stephen King is writing it on the wall of the classroom; Maggie is driving The Car; The Birds attack Mrs. Krabappel while sitting next to Hitchcock; Groundskeeper Willie is Hellboy; Carl is Blade and much more! It was the best couch gag ever made and a must-see for all horror fans.

Oh, the Places You'll Doh!
In this Dr. Seuss parody, Homer plays "The Fat in the Hat" and shows up to cure The Simpsons kids' mumps and take them on a crazy trick-or-treating adventure.

I'm not a big Dr. Seuss fan, so I didn't enjoy this much. The entire segment rhymes, just like a Dr. Seuss book, and it irritated me.

Dead and Shoulders

When Bart is decapitated, his head is attached to Lisa's body. Lisa controls all movement, but Bart discovers that he's in control when Lisa sleeps and plans to take over her body completely.
I hated this segment. I didn't laugh a single time and found it to be dull and unoriginal.

Freaks No Geeks

This segment is a spoof of the 1932 film, Freaks. In this version, Marge plays the trapeze artist and Homer plays the strongman. Many other Simpsons characters play freaks (Comic Book Guy is a snail and Barney is just a torso) but Moe is ugly enough to be a freak while remaining himself. Homer tricks Marge into marrying Moe and plans to poison him, then marry Marge to gain possession of Moe's emerald ring. When the freaks discover Homer's plan, they turn him into a human duck.

I really enjoyed this segment because I've actually seen - and like - Freaks. It also gave me the biggest laugh of the episode. Homer the Duck is sitting on the couch and says, "And that kids, is how I met your mother." Then the theme song from How I Met Your Mother plays.

Overall, this episode was a disappointment despite the awesome couch gag. Two of the three segments were pretty awful.

Bob's Burgers and American Dad both aired Halloween episodes tonight and I found them both to be funnier than this episode of The Simpsons.

Rating: 3/5

Here's Guillermo Del Toro's couch gag:

Sunday, October 6, 2013

R.L. Stine Book of the Week: The Haunted Mask

If looks could kill...


How ugly is Carly Beth's Halloween mask? It's so ugly that it almost scared her little brother to death. So terrifying that even her friends are totally freaked out by it.

It's the best Halloween mask ever. It's everything Carly Beth hoped it would be. And more.

Maybe too much more. Because Halloween is almost over.

And Carly Beth is still wearing that special mask....

My Thoughts: 

The Haunted Mask has always been one of my favourite Goosebumps books, mostly because it takes place on Halloween. It's much better than other Goosebumps Halloween books - Attack of the Jack-O'- Lanterns, I'm talking to you.  

Since the back cover synopsis doesn't give much away, I will enlighten you. Carly Beth scares easily and to get revenge on the two boys that constantly pull pranks on her, she buys the most terrifying mask she can find. But as Halloween night progresses, the mask changes her personality. She can't help scaring everyone she comes into contact with. Then, at the end of the night, she can't take off the mask.

Reading this again brought back lots of memories of trick-or-treating - the hunt for a good costume, jumping out and scaring friends, the candy. It isn't as scary as The Girl Who Cried Monster, or as gory as Welcome to Dead House, but it's still a good read - especially if you love Halloween.

The Haunted Mask was made into the first episode of the Goosebumps TV series. Unfortunately, it isn't available for streaming on Netflix, even though the rest of the series is.

There are also three sequels: The Haunted Mask II, The Scream of the Haunted Mask and Wanted: The Haunted Mask.

Rating: 4/5

PG Gore: I'm going to tear this woman apart! Carly Beth decided.

I'll chew her to bits! I'll tear her skin off her bones! Furious thoughts raged through Carly Beth's mind.

She tensed her muscles, crouched low, and prepared to pounce.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Book vs. Movie: The Lords of Salem

The Book

I wasn't aware that Rob Zombie had released a novel version of his film, The Lords of Salem, until after I watched the movie. I put a hold on the book at the library immediately, hoping that it would clear up some scenes I found confusing in the film - which it did.

I'm unsure how much of the book Rob Zombie actually wrote, since it says "with B.K. Evenson" in smaller letters on the cover. I'm assuming that Rob Zombie wrote the film script and B.K. Evenson turned it into a novel.

The Lords of Salem begins in 1692, with John Hawthorne and a few others executing a group of witches. But before the men have a chance to kill the coven, one of the witches puts a curse on their descendants.

In the present day, radio DJ and recovering addict Heidi Hawthorne is seeing things in the vacant apartment at the end of the hall and is having intense, realistic nightmares. Things keep getting stranger when a package arrives addressed to Adelheid Elizabeth Hawthorne in a wooden box with an odd symbol on it. Inside is a record from an unknown band called The Lords. When the song is played on Heidi's radio show, it puts the women of Salem into a trance which drives them to mutilate themselves and anyone near them. The Lords of Salem are back and ready to get their revenge.

The book adds a lot of scenes that are omitted from the movie. The first 40 pages are dedicated to the execution of the coven in 1692, which is only shown briefly in the film. The book also shows what happens to a few women when the song is played on the radio, while the film only focuses on Heidi. There is also more detail on Francis, the Salem Witch Trial expert, in the book than in the movie, which only shows him in a few scenes.

The story is the same as the movie, but there are still enough differences to enjoy both. It's not like other books made into films I've read that are identical to each other.

The Movie

I love Rob Zombie's non-Halloween horror films, so I knew I would probably enjoy this one, and I did. The Lords of Salem is very different from his other films. It's not a slasher and it doesn't have buckets of gore. Instead it relies more on atmosphere. I watched this alone, late at night, and it gave me the creeps. It has lots of disturbing imagery and made me jump quite a few times.

The cast in the film was awesome: Dee Wallace, Patricia Quinn, Judy Geeson, Meg Foster, Ken Foree, Jeff Daniel Phillips, Sheri Moon Zombie...and the list goes on.

The only thing I didn't like about the film was that it could be confusing at times. Especially the ending, which was the main reason I wanted to read the book.

I actually prefer the movie over the book (possibly for the first time ever) because the imagery in the film trumps what I could imagine in my head while reading the book. The book is still worth a read because it adds more details and it's entertaining, but if you only have enough time/money/effort for one, I would go with the film.

A soundtrack for The Lords of Salem was also released.

Book: 3/5

Movie: 4/5

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Dewey's Read-a-Thon Wrap-Up

I did it! I made it the whole 24 hours! I didn't read quite as much as I would've liked since I kept getting distracted by my boyfriend, but I still managed to read more pages than I did during the last Read-a-Thon, so I'll consider that an accomplishment.

Total pages read: 768

End of Event Meme
  1. Which hour was most daunting for you? From 1:00 a.m. until now I could barely keep my eyes open. I definitely recommend going to bed early the night before. I went to bed pretty late on Friday night and think it would've been easier if I had gotten more sleep.
  2. Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year? I don't know if this question refers to books I read during the Read-a-Thon or just books in general so I'll give one of each: Video Night by Adam Cesare and The Castle of Los Angeles by Lisa Morton.
  3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year? Nope. I thought everything was great!
  4. What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon? I loved the Mini Challenges. They were so much fun! A nice break from reading.
  5. How many books did you read? Almost four.
  6. What were the names of the books you read? I read the last 80 pages of The Blondes by Emily Schultz, Baxter by Jessica Hamilton, The Hollow Skull by Christopher Pike and 85% of Video Night by Adam Cesare
  7. Which book did you enjoy most? Video Night - well, what I've read of it so far.
  8. Which did you enjoy least? The Blondes - I've been trying to get through this book for weeks.
  9. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time? I'm definitely going to participate again! I'm already counting the days. I would be a reader again.

Dewey's Read-a-Thon Update #2

I've been so focused on reading and struggling to stay awake that I forgot to post about my progress. Well I'm still eyes keep trying to close. I'm using the text-to-speech function on my Kindle so that I don't really have to read. I'm trying to read along though because the robotic voice pronounces some words incorrectly and it makes the book a bit hard to understand (for example, "yeah" is pronounced as "yay!")

I finished reading The Hollow Skull by Christopher Pike and thought it was OK. The plot was a bit like his book Monster, only not nearly as good. It's about four teenagers who go down into an abandoned mine shaft. One falls into a pool of black liquid and starts acting strangely afterward, then the whole town starts acting strangely. I didn't care for the ending. The explanation behind why everyone was turning into a pod person was too out there for me.

I'm currently reading Video Night by Adam Cesare and am halfway through it. But I'm getting so tired I don't know how much longer I can last.

Total pages read: 558

Books finished: The Blondes (well the last 80 pages), Baxter, The Hollow Skull

Snacks consumed: A coffee with Cinnabon International Delight, more spinach dip

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Dewey's Read-a-Thon Mid-Event Survey

Mid-Event Survey

1) How are you doing? Sleepy? Are your eyes tired? 

I'm not feeling tired at all yet, it must be thanks to all the iced coffee I drank.

2) What have you finished reading?

I read the last 80 pages of The Blondes by Emily Schultz, Baxter by Jessica Hamilton and I'm currently halfway through The Hollow Skull by Christopher Pike.

3) What is your favorite read so far?

I'm really enjoying The Hollow Skull. I love Christopher Pike and this is one of the few books I've never read by him.

4) What about your favorite snacks?

Spinach dip with pumpernickel bread. My boyfriend also made me a delicious dinner:

Prosciutto and Swiss cheese stuffed chicken breasts, asparagus and crescent rolls.

5) Have you found any new blogs through the readathon? If so, give them some love!

I haven't really been reading many blogs because I'm trying to focus on reading (when I'm not being distracted by my boyfriend), but there's still time!

Dewey's Read-a-Thon Update #1

I haven't gotten much reading done because my boyfriend has the day off and has proved to be quite a distraction. I ended up watching this week's episode of Parks and Recreation instead of reading. At least my boyfriend offered to turn the closed captioning so I would technically be reading.

I decided to finish reading the book I've been reading for the past week, The Blondes by Emily Schultz, when I realized that it's due back at the library tomorrow and since I only had 80 pages left. For a book about an illness that turns blondes into zombie-like maniacs it didn't have much action or carnage. It was mostly about the narrator's pregnancy and her affair with her married professor. There were only a few scenes depicting the blonde attacks, but I did enjoy those parts of the book.

Then I dove into my reading pile. The first book I chose to read was Baxter by Jessica Hamilton. It's about an evil dog in search of an owner like itself. It was a bizarre book. I enjoyed the chapters written from the dog's perspective. Baxter isn't a crazed killer like Cujo, he's cold and calculating. Overall, it was an all right read. There wasn't a lot of action, but it was short (144 pages) so it held my attention.

Books finished: The Blondes (I guess it doesn't really count, but I technically finished it) and Baxter

Total pages read: 224

Snacks consumed: Spinach dip and pumpernickel bread, Sweet Marie Bars, Hot Dog Lunchable, vanilla iced coffee

Next up: The Hollow Skull by Christopher Pike

Book Sentence Challenge

For this challenge, you have to use book titles to form a sentence. Here's what I came up with:

Behind the Door Something Stirs In the Dark After Midnight.

Dewey's Read-a-Thon

Dewey's Read-a-Thon is today! I participated last year and had so much fun, I've decided to do it again. I will once again attempt to read (and blog about it) for 24 hours.

Here are the books I have chosen to read:

1. Baxter by Jessica Hamilton
2. The Hollow Skull by Christopher Pike
3. Video Night by Adam Cesare
4. The Rats by James Herbert
5. I Am Legend by Richard Matheson
6. Cycle of the Werewolf by Stephen King

And the food I have on hand (I'm not going to eat all of this, it was on sale at No Frills):

Lunchables, Snack Packs and Cheesestrings: perfect for a third grader's lunch box...or a read-a-thon.
  • Bagels with herb and garlic cream cheese
  • Gouda Babybels
  • Mozzarella Cheesestrings
  • Spinach dip with pumpernickel bread
  • Sweet Marie Bars
  • Lunchables (hot dogs, pizza or nachos)
  • Snack Packs (vanilla, chocolate, banana cream pie or ice cream sandwich)
  • Assorted K-cups with Cinnabon International Delight
  • International Delight Vanilla Iced Coffee
Introductory Questionnaire

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?

Oakville, Ontario

2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?

Video Night by Adam Cesare - I bought it in January and have been saving it for the Read-a-Thon so I would have a book I was really excited about.

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?

Spinach dip with pumpernickel bread.

4) Tell us a little something about yourself!

I have two cats: Betty and Timmy.

5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to?

I want to participate in more challenges this time.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Book vs. Movie: Valentine

Happy Valentine's Day! In honour of the special day, here's a post comparing the book Valentine to the film adaptation of the same name.

The Book

I saw the film version of Valentine before I read the book written by Tom Savage (I only recently became aware of the book's existence), so I was surprised to find that the book is a thriller and not a horror novel. It focuses more on suspense than gore while the film is a slasher. The plot in the book barely resembles the plot in the movie.

The book is about Jillian Talbot, a bestselling mystery author, who receives threatening Valentine's Day cards and is the victim of other unsettling pranks in the days leading up to February 14. She becomes convinced that an old classmate, Victor Dimorta, is the one behind it.

In college, Jillian was part of a clique where each member was named after a different element: Earth, Wind, Fire and Water. On Valentine's Day, they played a cruel prank on Victor, resulting in his expulsion from college.

When the police tell Jillian that they can't help her, she hires a private investigator to find her stalker, but the closer it gets to Valentine's Day, the less time there is for Jillian.

There are so many parts of the book that I love and wish they had included in the movie. In the book, the killer elaborately plans the murders, using the clique's nicknames - Earth, Wind, Fire and Water - to end their lives. He also plays the song "My Funny Valentine" before he kills them because it's the song that was playing when they pulled the prank on him.

The killer also has a better motive in the book. By pulling a prank on Victor, the girls essentially ruin his life (or so he thinks). When he's expelled, he's sent home to his abusive father and things just get worse from there. College was his chance to get away from his family and the girls ruined it. This makes his character more believable than in the film.

The biggest difference between the book and the movie is that the murders take place over the span of a few years instead of in succession. The murders in the book each have their own chapter, shown from the killer's perspective while he reminisces about them. 

My favourite part of the novel was the twist at the end. When I saw the quote on the cover of the book from James Patterson - "Suspense with a twist." - I spent the entire book trying to figure out what it could be. I thought I knew the identity of the killer since I had already seen the movie but I didn't think that was much of a twist. Eventually I started to think maybe they changed the ending for the movie and I was blown away by the ending of the book.

Seeing the film first didn't take away my enjoyment of the book and I recommend anyone who enjoyed the movie to check out the novel.

The Movie

Five young women who have remained friends since middle school are the targets of disturbing pranks - creepy Valentine cards and chocolates filled with maggots - before Valentine's Day. When one of them dies, they realize the pranks are more than sick jokes.

The Valentine cards are signed with the initials J.M. which leads them to believe they're from Jeremy Melton - a boy who asked them all to dance at their middle school Valentine's Day dance and they all rudely rebuffed. But one of the girls kept a secret from the others. When some boys caught her making out with Jeremy under the bleachers, she was humiliated and lied, saying he attacked her, resulting in him being sent to reform school.

While their friends are being picked off, they try to figure out which man in their lives could secretly be Jeremy Melton.

Since they turned the novel into a slasher, the body count is higher than what it is in the book and the deaths are more gruesome and unusual. But I enjoyed the gory death scenes. I think the only thing missing from the novel is gore and that's the reason why I tend to choose horror novels over thrillers. I especially like the death by Cupid's arrows and the maggot-filled chocolates.

In the book, the killer is cold and calculating, taking several years to think of the perfect plan for revenge - going to lengths to incorporate their nicknames into their deaths and ensure the deaths happen on Valentine's Day. The killer in the film is the typical slasher psycho - he wears a mask (a Cupid mask that was worn at the middle school dance) and kills several people in a row as gruesomely as possible with little thought behind it.

In the film, the women remain friends, whereas in the book the girls stop being friends after college (Jillian doesn't speak to them after the prank). Each character in the movie is a cliche. There's the Smart One, the Sexy One, the Fun One, the Nice One and the Fat One (or the Formerly Fat One). The characters in the book are described more realistically, although the book doesn't focus on the other women nearly as much as on Jillian.

There are a lot of differences between the book and the movie, but these are the major ones.

The Verdict

The novel is much better than the film. They took a suspenseful psychological thriller and turned it into a run-of-the-mill slasher. The only things the two have in common are the basic plot - a spurned classmate gets revenge on the girls who rejected and humiliated him - the disturbing Valentine cards and the climax taking place during a Valentine's Day party.

I still do like the film (I have a thing for slashers), but when comparing it to the book, I realized that it's just your typical slasher, nothing special. Unlike the book, which has a twist ending which I didn't see coming even after seeing the movie first.

I would give the book a 4/5 and the movie a 3/5 rating.

Monday, January 7, 2013

2013 Reading Challenges

Since I came so close to my challenge of reading 50 books last year, but fell a bit short. I've decided to join some reading challenges in 2013 to help me reach that goal this year.

Christopher Pike Reading Challenge

I love Christopher Pike and I'm so excited about this challenge. I'm going to attempt the Bury Me Deep level, which is 7 - 9 Christopher Pike books. I'm going to read his books I've never read and already own: Sati, The Listeners, The Cold One, The Blind Mirror, Falling, The Immortal, The Hollow Skull and his latest, Witch World (I just checked it out at the library and it's really good so far). You can sign up for this challenge at Midnight Book Girl.

Monthly Key Word Reading Challenge

In this challenge, there are keywords associated with each month and you have to choose a book with a title which contains one of the keywords. I probably could've completed this entire challenge with Christopher Pike books, but where's the fun in that? I've chosen only horror novels for this challenge. You can sign up for this challenge at Bookmark to Blog.

January: The Cold One by Christopher Pike
February: Valentine by Tom Savage (I think this is close enough to the word "love.")
March: Down on the Farm by John Stchur
April: The Light at the End by John Skipp & Craig Spector
May: Sparrow Rock by Nate Kenyon
June: Dead Sea by Brian Keene
July: Ladies' Night by Jack Ketchum
August: Come Out Tonight by Richard Laymon
September: Cry Wolf by Alan B. Chronister
October: Ghost Story by Peter Straub
November: The Long Last Call by John Skipp
December: After Midnight by Richard Laymon

Book to Movie Reading Challenge

I always try to read the book before I watch the movie. As a result, I own several movies and have many on my DVR waiting until I finally get around to reading the book first. Hopefully this challenge will push me to read these books and watch the films based on them. I'm choosing the Movie Aficionado level and will review 12 books and the movies based on them. You can sign up for this challenge at Doing Dewey.

1. The House Next Door by Anne Rivers Siddons
2. Cameron's Closet by Gary Brandner
3. Mother's Boys by Bernard Taylor
4. The Wolfen by Whitley Strieber
5. Coma by Robin Cook
6. Burnt Offerings by Robert Marasco
7. Twins by Bari Wood
8. The Glow by Brooks Stanwood
9. Phantoms by Dean Koontz
10.  Valentine by Tom Savage
11. Horns by Joe Hill
12. The Other by Thomas Tryon

Women Reading Challenge

This is a challenge to read more books by women authors. Since Women in Horror Appreciation Month started a couple years ago, I've made an effort to read more horror novels by women authors. I joined this challenge to ensure that I continue to read more horror books written by women. I've included a few non-horror books as well. I'm shooting for the Wonder Woman level and plan to read 16 or more books. You can sign up for this challenge at Peek a Book.

Books that cross over with other challenges:

1. The House Next Door
2. Twins

Other books:

3. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
4. Money Shot by Christa Faust
5. Thrall by Mary SanGiovanni
6. Prodigal by Melanie Tem
7. Sineater by Elizabeth Massie
8. The Auctioneer by Joan Samson
9. Smoke by Ruby Jean Jensen
10. Skin by Kathe Koja
11. Dead in the Water by Nancy Holder
12. The Ridge by Lisa W. Cantrell
13. Haunted by Tamara Thorne
14. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
15. How to Be a Woman by Caitlin Moran
16. Let's Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson

Mount TBR Reading Challenge

I probably own at least over 1000 books (not sure, I have too many to count) and still have to read many of them. I hope this challenge will motivate me to read some books that have been on my shelves for years. I'm attempting the Mt. Ararat level and reading 48 books from my TBR pile. You can sign up for this challenge at My Reader's Block.

Books that cross over with other challenges:

1. The Cold One
2. The Listeners
3. Sati
4. Falling
5. The Blind Mirror
6. The Immortal
7. The Hollow Skull
8. Down on the Farm
9. The Light at the End
10. Sparrow Rock
11. Dead Sea
12. Ladies' Night
13. Come Out Tonight
14. Cry Wolf
15. Ghost Story
16. The Long Last Call
17. After Midnight
18. The House Next Door
19. Valentine
20. Cameron's Closet
21. Phantoms
22. Mother's Boys
23. The Wolfen
24. Coma
25. Burnt Offerings
26. Twins
27. The Glow
28. Horns
29. John Dies at the End
30. The Other
31. The Ridge
32. Silk
33. Thrall
34. Prodigal
35. Sineater
36. The Auctioneer
37. Smoke
38. Skin
39. Dead in the Water

Other books I've had on my bookshelf for a long time:

40. Dark Hollow by Brian Keene

41. Ghost Walk by Brian Keene

42. The Ceremonies by T.E.D. Klein 
43. The Drive-In by Joe Lansdale
44. Mirror by Graham Masterton
45. Valley of the Scarecrow by Gord Rollo
46. Baxter by Jessica Hamilton
47. The Elementals by Michael McDowell
48. The Amityville Horror by Jay Anson