I gotta coupla fine Halloween books, either of which you could still manage to read before trickertreaters arrive


091) Sharp Teeth by Toby Barlow, finished October 22

I was pretty pissed off the first time I opened this book. Nick Hornby had promised me blank verse and this was blanketyblankin free verse. Is there no fact-checking at The Believer???

Anyway. Everything else Hornby promised ended up being true. This was a great read---propulsive and lovely and jawdroppingly violent. It also had a few weird typos I suspect would have been caught in prose.

Here's the gist: FREE-verse novel about rival gangs of werewolves in L.A. Explicit sex and cannibalism. Mostly awesome. A few narrative cheats are taken but this is Poetry so somehow it's closer to okay. Some true things said about personal relationships and community. Makes you both want a dog and fear dogs. The cover's awesome---consider going for the hardback.

I won't claim it will still be here in a hundred years, but you can't do much better if you're looking for a Halloween book. And, ahem, free verse reads fast.
under three weeks


092) Homespun and Angel Feathers by Darlene Young, finished October 29

MS policy. (But it's really good.)
three noncontiguous days


093) A Night in the Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny, finished October 29

This is a marvelous Halloween read. And if you're still looking for a book to enjoy this Halloween, it's not too late. You could read it in a couple cozy afternoons.

First, the dedication:

Mary Shelley, Edgar Allen Poe, Bram Stoker,
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, H.P. Lovecraft, Ray Bradbury,
Robert Block, Albert Payson Terhune,
and the makers of a lot of old movies—

This novel is a scrapbook of one author's beloved references. He's woven Larry Talbot and Sherlock Holmes and Shub-Niggurath into a single coherent tale. And done it so well.

Perhaps the purest stroke of genius here is to have it all narrated by a world-weary, good-natured, honest, diligent, intelligent, ancient dog.

I know. That doesn't sound like a great idea. But then you have not met Snuff.

Here's the gist: Every time the full moon and Halloween coincide, somewhere in the world a group of ... people, let's call them, come together to play the Game, in which openers and closers jockey for position and fight to open (or prevent the full opening) or a door which would allow the Elder Gods to conquer our world. So far, we've been lucky.

Each "human" participant works with an animal familiar, and A Night in the Lonesome October largely follows these animals as they investigate small mysteries and try to discover who is on which side as they prepare for Halloween. Each night marks one chapter in the book and they vary in length.

The novel is immediately compelling, but early in the month things are slow to get going. Which is sensible of course. Snuff makes his rounds and does his chores, etc etc, but slowly things come together and we pass through moments of insanity and violence and clashing climax. It's a dandy book, it really is.

Sadly, because of the cover by James Warhola, the interior illustrations by Gahan Wilson felt incorrect for maybe a third of the novel. Which was a shame because they are vastly more appropriate companions for the actual words. This is Zelazny's October:

Anyway, I don't want to say much more as much of the pleasure of the novel is recognizing old friends in new guises. That's something you'll want for yourself.
three or four months


The other books of 2018

1 – 4
001) Black Panther: A Nation Under Our Feet Book 3 by Ta-Nehisi Coates &‎ Brian Stelfreeze & al., finished January
002) The Complete Peanuts 1950-2000 by Charles M. Schulz & al., finished January
003) The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien, finished January 10
004) El Deafo by Cece Bell, finished January 12

5 – 9
005) Cleopatra in Space: Target Practice by Mike Maihack, finished January 13
006) Nabokov's Favorite Word Is Mauve by Ben Blatt, finished January 15
007) Glister by Andi Watson, finished January 18
008) Zita the Spacegirl by Ben Hatke, finished January 20
009) The Lay of Aotrou and Itroun by J.R.R. Tolkien, finished January 21

10 – 11
010) The Vision by Tom King et al., finished January 23
011) Miles Morales: Spider-Man by Jason Reynolds, finished January 24

16 – 16
012) Anthem by Ayn Rand, finished February 8
013) The City in Which I Love You by Li-Young Lee, finished February 14
014) Many Waters by Madeleine L'Engle, finished February 21
015) It Needs to Look Like We Tried by Todd Robert Petersen, finished March 7
016, 017) Fences by August Wilson, finished March 8

18 – 20
018) The Andromeda Strain by Michael Crichton, finished March 13
019) Star Wars Super Graphic: A Visual Guide to a Galaxy Far, Far Away by Tim Leong, finished March 22
020) Superman: Secret Identity by Kurt Busiek and Stuart Immonen, finished March 25

21 – 25
021) M Is for Malice by Sue Grafton, finished March 28
022) Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by Jack Thorne, J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany; finished March 31
023) It All Started with Hippocrates: A Mercifully Brief History of Medicine by Richard Armour, finished April 6
024) Don't Bump the Glump by Shel Silverstein, finished April 14
025) Coriolanus by Wm Shakespeare, finished April 16

26 – 32
026) The Trouble with Reality by Brooke Gladstone, finished April 24
027, 28) Coriolanus by William Shakespeare, finished April 26
029) The Secret History of Twin Peaks by Mark Frost, finished April 28
030) Twisted Tales from Shakespeare by Richard Armour, finished April 28 or April 29 depending on when midnight happened
031) Bless The Child: A Romance of Redemption and Glory in the Ancient World by David J. West, finished May 1
032) The Decline and Fall of Practically Everybody by Will Cuppy, finished May 3

32 – 34
032) Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, finished May 9
033) Stargazing Dog by Takashi Murakami, finished May 9
034) Vader Down by Jason Aaron and Mike Deodato, finished May 18

035) The Book of Mormon: A Reader's Edition edited by Grant Hardy, finished May 23

36 – 50
036) Bad Kitty Camp Daze by Nick Bruel, finished May 24
037) I'm Just No Good at Rhyming: And Other Nonsense for Mischievous Kids and Immature Grown-Ups by Chris Harris, finished May 24
038) The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage: The (Mostly) True Story of the First Computer by Sydney Padua, finished May 30
039) Princess Leia by Mark Waid et al, finished May 30
040) Chopsticks by Jessica Anthony & Rodrigo Corral, finished June 12
041) Everything You Need to Know About a Mission by Ralph Thomas, finished June 13
042) The Invisibles by Grant Morrison et al, finished June 14
043) The Fifth Head of Cerberus by Gene Wolfe, finished June 15
044) Material Volume 1 by Ales Kot & Will Tempest & al., finished June 23
045) Love & Misadventure by Lang Leav, finished June 30
046) The Rain in Portugal by Billy Collins, finished July 7
047) Bucky Barnes: The Winter Soldier Vol. 1: The Man On The Wall by Ales Kos, finished July 7
048) Monster Verse: Poems Human and Inhuman edited by Tony Barnstone & Michelle Mitchell-Foust, finished July 10
049) Poems Dead and Undead edited by Tony Barnstone & Michelle Mitchell-Foust, finished July 10
050) Mary's Monster by Lita Judge, finished July 11

51 – 57
051) Bel Canto by Ann Patchett, finished July 18
052) Hostage by Guy Delisle, finished July 21
053) The One Hundred Nights of Hero by Isabel Greenberg, finished July 22
054) Paper Girls, Vol 4 by Brian K Vaughan and Cliff Chiang, finished July 24
055) Chocolate: The Consuming Passion by Sandra Boynton, finished July 25
056) [Aelian's] On the Nature of Animals translated by Gregory McNamee, finished July 27
057) Blue Yodel by Ansel Alkins, finished July 27

58 – 63
058) The 57 Bus: A True Story of Two Teenagers and the Crime That Changed Their Lives by Dashka Slater, finished July 31
059) Bandette Volume 1: Presto! by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover, finished July 31
060) Legends of Zita the Space Girl by Ben Hatke, finished August 3
061) Darth Vader: End of Games by Kieron Gillen & Salvador Larroca, finished August 6
062) How to Read Nancy by Paul Karasik & Mark Newgarden, finished August 10
063) The Selected Poems of Donald Hall by Donald Hall, finished August 14

64 – 68
064) The Encyclopedia of Early Earth by Isabel Greenberg, finished August 15
065) The Humans by Stephen Karam, finished August 15
066) Space Cat by Ruthven Todd, finished August 16
067) Strip Search: Revealing Today's Best College Cartoonists, finished August 16
068) A Contract with God by Will Eisner, finished August 18

69 – 73
069) Space Cat Visits Venus by Ruthven Todd, finished August 19
070) Served: A Missionary Comic Anthology edited by Theric Jepson & Mike Laughead & al., finished August 22
071) Precious Rascals by Anthony Holden, finished August 24
072) The Peanuts' Guide To Life by Charles M. Schulz (sort of), finished August 25
073) Batman: The Doom That Came To Gotham by Mike Mignola et al., finished August 28

74 – 81
074) My Favorite Thing Is Monsters by Emil Ferris, finished August 29
075) The Customer Is Always Wrong by Mimi Pond, finished August 30
076) Bandette: Stealers Keepers! by Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover, finished August 30
077) You're All Just Jealous of My Jetpack by Tom Gauld, finished September 6
078) Baking With Kafka by Tom Gauld, finished September 7
079) Mooncop by Tom Gauld, finished September 7
080) Goliath by Tom Gauld, finished September 7
081) Educated by Tara Westover, finished September 12

82 – 85
082) Beyond the Light by Ryan Shoemaker, finished September 17
083) Space Cat Meets Mars by Ruthven Todd, finished September 22
084) Invisible Gifts by Maw Shein Win, finished September 24
085) Middlemarch by George Eliot, finished September 29

86 – 90
086) Murder in Manhattan, finished October 7
087) The Pillowman by Martin McDonagh, finished October 10
088) Player Piano by Kurt Vonnegut, finished October 10
089) Lumberjanes, vol. one by Noelle Stevenson and village, finished October 16
090) SkyHeart Book I: The Star Seed by Jake Parker by Jake Parker, finished October 16

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

* the most recent post in this series *

final booky posts of
2007 = 2008 = 2009 = 2010 = 2011 = 2012 = 2013 = 2014 = 2015 = 2016 = 2017

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