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Review: My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell

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This was not a favorite. My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell Released March 2020 Source: Library Borrow Dark Fiction   |   Goodreads   | Bookshop Exploring the psychological dynamics of the relationship between a precocious yet naïve teenage girl and her magnetic and manipulative teacher, a brilliant, all-consuming read that marks the explosive debut of an extraordinary new writer. 2000. Bright, ambitious, and yearning for adulthood, fifteen-year-old Vanessa Wye becomes entangled in an affair with Jacob Strane, her magnetic and guileful forty-two-year-old English teacher. 2017. Amid the rising wave of allegations against powerful men, a reckoning is coming due. Strane has been accused of sexual abuse by a former student, who reaches out to Vanessa, and now Vanessa suddenly finds herself facing an impossible choice: remain silent, firm in the belief that her teenage self willingly engaged in this relationship, or redefine herself and the events of her past. But how can Vanessa rej

Review: Cool S by Die Booth

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Be careful with your doodles! Cool S by Die Booth Released August, 2022 Source: ARC received for review consideration Dark Fiction   |   Goodreads   | Buy It Here Tracy Forrest has it all. A great boyfriend, loyal best mate, good job and new house. But something is missing. There’s a wistful longing for good times gone by that Trace just can’t lay to rest. When she spots a ubiquitous and mysterious teenage doodle in an old schoolbook, she becomes obsessed with finding out what it is. You know Cool S? Yeah, you do. Cool S. Super S. Pointy S. THE S. That thing we all doodled on notebooks and schoolbooks and pencil cases, maybe graffitied on a park bench or a bus stop if you were frisky. Ever wondered what it was? Where it came from? What it means? Well, I’m here to tell you. Are you sure you want to know? Cool S. Some things should stay lost. My 2 Cents for Free! I don’t know if I ever drew the graffiti “S” aka “Cool S” while I was in school but I definitely rem

Review: The Hacienda by Isabel Cañas

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This one didn't entirely work for me. The Hacienda by Isabel Canas Released May 2022 Source: Library Borrow Dark Fiction   |   Goodreads   |   Amazon   |  Bookshop Mexican Gothic meets Rebecca in this debut supernatural suspense novel, set in the aftermath of the Mexican War of Independence, about a remote house, a sinister haunting, and the woman pulled into their clutches... In the overthrow of the Mexican government, Beatriz’s father is executed and her home destroyed. When handsome Don Rodolfo Solórzano proposes, Beatriz ignores the rumors surrounding his first wife’s sudden demise, choosing instead to seize the security his estate in the countryside provides. She will have her own home again, no matter the cost. But Hacienda San Isidro is not the sanctuary she imagined. When Rodolfo returns to work in the capital, visions and voices invade Beatriz’s sleep. The weight of invisible eyes follows her every move. Rodolfo’s sister, Juana, scoffs at Beatriz’s fears—but why d

Review: What Moves the Dead by T.Kingfisher

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This book was released on July 12 and although I finished the book and reviewed it in plenty of time, I forgot to schedule the blog post (ahhh). Anyway, better late than never, I guess! What Moves the Dead by T. Kingfisher Released July 12, 2022 Source: ARC received for review consideration Dark Fiction   |   Goodreads  |   Amazon   |  Bookshop From the award-winning author of The Twisted Ones comes a gripping and atmospheric retelling of Edgar Allan Poe's classic "The Fall of the House of Usher." When Alex Easton, a retired soldier, receives word that their childhood friend Madeline Usher is dying, they race to the ancestral home of the Ushers in the remote countryside of Ruritania. What they find there is a nightmare of fungal growths and possessed wildlife, surrounding a dark, pulsing lake. Madeline sleepwalks and speaks in strange voices at night, and her brother Roderick is consumed with a mysterious malady of the nerves. Aided by a redoubtable British myco

Review: The Ghost That Ate Us by Daniel Kraus

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It's release day (and I'm actually on time for once in my life!) The Ghost That Ate Us by Daniel Kraus Released July 12, 2022 Source: ARC received for review consideration Dark Fiction   |   Goodreads   |   Amazon   |  Bookshop Maybe you read about it on Twitter. Maybe a friend sent you a news clip. Maybe you saw it on an episode of Spectral Journeys that night you were flipping through channels, unable to sleep. Maybe after reading the true story, you won’t ever sleep again. On June 1, 2017, six people were killed at a Burger City franchise off I-80 near Jonny, Iowa. It was the bizarre and gruesome conclusion to nine months of alleged paranormal activity at the fast-food joint—events popularly known as “the Burger City Poltergeist.” The story inspired Facebook memes, Twitter hashtags, Buzzfeed listicles, Saturday Night Live sketches, and more. But the case was never much more than a punchline…until bestselling writer Daniel Kraus (The Shape of Water, The Living Dead)

Review: Dark Stars: New Tales of Darkest Horror edited by John F.D. Taff

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Anthologies are so hard to review but I tried my best. Dark Stars: New Tales of Darkest Horror edited by John F.D. Taff Released: May 2022 Dark Fiction   |   Goodreads   |   Amazon   |  Bookshop Dark Stars, edited by John F.D. Taff, is a tribute to horror’s longstanding short fiction legacy, featuring 12 terrifying original stories from today’s most noteworthy authors. Within these pages you’ll find tales of dead men walking, an insidious secret summer fling, an island harboring unspeakable power, and a dark hallway that beckons. You’ll encounter terrible monsters―both human and supernatural―and be forever changed. The stories in Dark Stars run the gamut from traditional to modern, from dark fantasy to neo-noir, from explorations of beloved horror tropes to the unknown―possibly unknowable―threats. It’s all in here because it’s all out there, now, in horror. Dark Stars features all-new stories from the following award-winning authors and up-and-coming voices: Chesya Burke, Rams

Review: Ensnared by Tiffany Roberts

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This wasn't exactly what I thought it was going to be and I'm actually happy about it. Ensnared by Tiffany Roberts Released: May 2021 Sci-Fi Romance   |   Goodreads   |   Amazon    Ketahn did not want a mate. Fate has a different plan for him. When the queen he despises declares her intention to claim him, he retreats into the jungle. What he finds there changes his world. Small, delicate, and pale skinned, Ivy Foster is nothing like the females Ketahn has known. She’s not of his kind at all. Yet the moment he sees her, he knows the truth in his soul—she is his heartsthread. And now that he has her, he won’t let anything take her away. Not the jungle, not the gods, not the queen. Whether Ivy agrees or not, their webs are entangled. No one will ever sever those threads. ---- Book 1 of 3 in The Spider's Mate Trilogy. My 2 Cents For Free! This was such an adorably sweet slow-burn romance. I was honestly quite surprised because, well, feast your eyes u

Review: My Sweet Audrina by V.C. Andrews

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Here I am with another 2 1/2 star review 😬 I do still like books. Truly I do. My Sweet Audrina by V.C Andrews Released 1983 Dark Fiction   |   Goodreads   |   Amazon   |  Bookshop V.C. Andrews, author of the phenomenally successful Dollanganger series, has created a fascinating new cast of characters in this haunting story of love and deceit, innocence and betrayal, and the suffocating power of parental love. Audrina Adare wanted so to be as good as her sister. She knew her father could not love her as he loved her sister. Her sister was so special, so perfect -- and dead. Now she will come face to face with the dangerous, terrifying secret that everyone knows. Everyone except...  My Sweet Audrina.  My 2 Cents For Free! “Just trust whatever Papa tells you.” 😩 Sometimes you reread a book and think “wow that really held up. I’ve always had impeccable taste” and you pat yourself on the back for being such a smarty-pants even as a kid and then there are the days

Review: The Violence by Delilah S. Dawson

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I'm back with a 2.5 star review. Sorry in advance 😬  The Violence by Delilah S. Dawson Released February 1, 2022 Dark Fiction   |   Goodreads   |   Amazon   |  Bookshop A mysterious plague that causes random bouts of violence is sweeping the nation. Now three generations of women must navigate their chilling new reality in this moving exploration of identity, cycles of abuse, and hope. Chelsea Martin appears to be the perfect housewife: married to her high school sweetheart, the mother of two daughters, keeper of an immaculate home. But Chelsea's husband has turned their home into a prison; he has been abusing her for years, cutting off her independence, autonomy, and support. She has nowhere to turn, not even to her narcissistic mother, Patricia, who is more concerned with maintaining the appearance of an ideal family than she is with her daughter's actual well-being. And Chelsea is worried that her daughters will be trapped just as she is--until a mysterious ill

Horror Fiction Review: Dead Silence by S.A. Barnes

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I read this for the #LOHFReadathon and our monthly #LOHFReadalong . Dead Silence by S.A. Barnes Released February 8, 2022 Dark Fiction   |   Goodreads   |   Amazon   |  Bookshop Titanic meets The Shining in S.A. Barnes’ Dead Silence, a SF horror novel in which a woman and her crew board a decades-lost luxury cruiser and find the wreckage of a nightmare that hasn't yet ended. A GHOST SHIP. A SALVAGE CREW. UNSPEAKABLE HORRORS. Claire Kovalik is days away from being unemployed—made obsolete—when her beacon repair crew picks up a strange distress signal. With nothing to lose and no desire to return to Earth, Claire and her team decide to investigate. What they find at the other end of the signal is a shock: the Aurora, a famous luxury space-liner that vanished on its maiden tour of the solar system more than twenty years ago. A salvage claim like this could set Claire and her crew up for life. But a quick trip through the Aurora reveals something isn’t right. Whispers in the