This week my “top 5” list was put together for my friend Amy, who asked for recommendations on spooky ghost stories. I love reading creepy books, and had so much fun putting this one together. Whether you’re able to handle some serious paranormal action, or want something on the lighter side to only dip your toes into the horror genre, you’ll be able to find something on this list.
Yes, I realize that it is actually January, but I’ve been so busy for the past month working and drinking egg nog that I haven’t been able to write about all my literary romps! So, fellow book nerds, feel free to check out these short reviews about some of the books I read in the past few weeks!
Room, by Emma Donoghue
This book starts off like an episode of Criminal Minds, but better. Why? Because 1) it’s a book (duh) and 2) it gets into the minds of the victims: a young mother and her five year old son who are being held in a single room. Jack was born and raised in the room, has never left, and is content with his life; he has no idea what is outside the four walls he knows so well. His mother, on the other hand, remembers everything about her former life and wants nothing more to escape. I wasn’t sure about whether or not I would enjoy Room, but I did. It was a beautiful, powerful story about survival and love, and it’s told from Jack’s point-of-view, which is both heartwarming and frustrating. I’d recommend Room to almost anyone.
The Girl With All The Gifts, by M.R. Carey
Have you ever heard of Ophiocordyceps unilateralis? It’s this weird fungal disease that more or less turns ants into zombies. The fungus attacks the ant’s brain, and begins to manipulate its behaviour. Once the ant dies, it releases a disgusting looking spore from its head, which then later infects more ants. What makes this disease even more interesting is that it only infects certain hosts.
What does this have to do with a book? Well, imagine if this disease evolved into a form that was able to infect humans, because that’s the setting of The Girl With All The Gifts.
In this post-apocalyptic tale, humans that have become infected with the new strain of ophiocordyceps are referred to as “hungries,” and they attack and eat other people. Those that have gone unaffected live in heavily protected areas. A few military personnel, however, live at a base and conduct experiments on children who have been infected but do not display typical “hungry” behaviour.
What sets these children apart? Why are they able to (sometimes) resist the desire to attack and eat humans? Do they hold the cure to this infectious disease? You’ll have to read the book to find out!
Yes Please, by Amy Poehler
I’m going to be honest and admit that I am not familiar with any of Amy Poehler’s work (other than her role as “the cool mom” in Mean Girls). I saw her book on a lot of “You Need To Read These Books” lists and decided to give it a go.
Best. Decision. Ever.
Amy Poehler is a queen. Her book is filled with solid advice that will also make you a queen. She spills a lot of tough truths while simultaneously making you laugh. Read this book. Just do it.
PS — if you want to see everything I’ve been reading, check out my Goodreads account.