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I enjoyed the ReadaThing at Hallowe'en and so figured this would be a good time to try this out. I'm going to try reading predominantly from my own collection or books that I can borrow from friends/family or the library. This may mean I don't read something entirely 'appropriate' to each month's theme, but I'm hoping to get through at least one thing a month.
At this point I'm planning on reading The Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole in January which was already in my collection. This is a re-read, but it's been 20+ years since I last read it back when I was an English student at university and read it while studying Mervyn Peake's Gormenghast trilogy.
The change in language doesn't bother me, thankfully and the story itself is not actually too difficult to follow or get into, but yeah, I guess I was just after something a little more relaxing this evening and that I didn't need to work quite so hard to mentally put in the breaks that a modern text would include.
*ETA: It just arrived, so I'm listening to it now. :)
I'm going to catch up on some of my other reading before starting my horror read for next month which at this point I expect to be The Day Watch by Sergei Lukyanenko, the second in the Night Watch series. I hope everyone else's reads for this month are going well. :D
What do you mean, 'right-on with books'? Hope it doesn't imply that I know what I'm talking about or have opinions worth taking notice of or anything like that, I wouldn't want people getting the wrong idea - I'm just an ignoramus who likes reading :D
Well, you've recommended a few movies and books to me that have been "right-on." But no worries: I won't tell anyone you know what you're talking about or have opinions worth taking notice of. ;) We wouldn't want that to happen.
>13 Moomin_Mama: Even if I did try The Monk and didn't like, believe me, I wouldn't hold you responsible! :D But I think you're right. No more gothic for now. Goth music, sure, but no more old, old gothic books for now. Maybe later.
For some reason I'm not really getting into the Du Maurier stories, I expected to like them more than I am because of them being by Daphne Du Maurier and I'm sure I enjoyed My Cousin Rachel and Rebecca when I read them years ago, but then maybe it's because I'm not a big fan of short stories.
The Day Watch is going okay, but I'm not sure that I'll finish it by the end of the month. I picked up Century by Sarah Singleton while out today and so I might try and cram that so I've got through and actually finished something - it doesn't look too long and according to the tags I found on LT, it's tagged as both horror and supernatural (mystery and gothic were also thrown in).
On the other hand, The Day Watch is going pretty well and if I had more time I might actually get through it, so I'll turn my efforts to that.
Century by Sarah Singleton
The story centres around Mercy Verga who lives with her sister, father and two servants in a house called Century, but it's a twilight world where they get up as the sun sets and go to bed as it rises. Waking one morning to find a snowdrop on her pillow, she begins to question their existence. When she then meets Claudius, her uncle, a little of the truth is revealed, just enough to make sure that her questions become more intense and she begins to search for real answers to why they live as they do, why nothing ever changes, what happened to her mother and so on. Her father and governess try to resist her search, prevent her discovering more, but their resistance only fuels her need to find out the truth.
This is according to the cover of the book the debut by the author and it's also the winner of the 'Booktrust Teenage Prize'. As for my enjoyment of it, I was curious to find out the truth about what was really happening now and what had happened in the past to put them in this position but I didn't fully engage with it, some how the characters didn't feel fully formed and there were a few instances where I wanted to say well if that's the case what about this - for example,
Another scene which made me uncomfortable in plot terms was
So overall, not terrible, but not great either, and for me definitely not a keeper.
I've requested Dracula from the local library but they've mislaid their copy and are trying to track it down so that I can borrow it which was another incentive in borrowing Wuthering Heights so that I wasn't leaving it until the very end of the month and struggling to finish it in time again (as with Day Watch).
I read The Evil Eye : Four Novellas of Love Gone Wrong by Joyce Carol Oates for the short story month based on a rec of her work in short stories and it being the only one available that month at the library (not that they have many at all). So although this apparently wasn't actually the right genre and wasn't horror - I actually found it pretty horror-filled. Her writing really wasn't my thing and I struggled to finish it.
I'm still plodding through Day Watch by Sergei Lukyanenko but can't really give a reason for the struggling because it's fine, I just don't feel inspired to pick it up right now.
I also finished Dracula by Bram Stoker but that also took me a couple of months to get through. I was surprised by how little Dracula actually appears in the book and how much it's based on the threat of him or of what he's done while we were just a few rooms over. It also made the 'final showdown' somewhat anticlimatic I feel.
Nothing else immediately planned - maybe a return to Day Watch with a little more vigour! Then I'll see where my eyes take me.
I own Day Watch, but I've never started it. Have you seen the movie of it? That one was a lot of fun, as well as its sequel! :)
I've never read Dracula (only seen the movie adaptations), so that's interesting you mention he's hardly in the book. Congrats on actually finishing it! :) It's a big one.
Best of luck with Day Watch and whatever else your eyes wander across!
With regard to Dracula, there were sort of scary parts, there were well drawn parts, but as a whole there was too much in between that detracted from the main parts. Hearing all the different parts of the 'action' by the vampire hunters was driving me to distraction :D
Florence and Giles by John Harding
A modern take on the gothic horror style of book. Orphan half-siblings, Florence and Giles live with servants in a rambling great house with an abandoned tower. The story is told by Florence. The 'gothicness' of the setting works fine, the set up of the children in the house with servants and then the governesses similarly is fine. The unreliability of the narrator isn't apparent at first, which gives the story the depth and the 'horror' element. My biggest complaint - and it is a pretty big one - is Florence's speech pattern. She turns nouns and adjectives into verbs constantly - 'he restlessed', 'I up-bannistered', 'he curioused me a glance', 'I long-corridored my way through the house', 'he carelessed'. Over the course of the book, this just became more and more irritating and I was cringing more than enjoying the story.