Welcome to the October edition of Bookish; summer has ended, and the cold weather is setting in. So why not stay at home with a nice cup of your favourite drink and jump into one of these great books that I’m recommending this month?
The Sandman (An Audible Original)
Neil Gaiman & Dirk Maggs
Genre: Fantasy / Horror
For Fans Of: Joe Hill
What’s in the pages? When the king of dreams, Lord Morpheus (also known as the Sandman), is plucked from his realm and trapped on earth by a dangerous cult, his powers diminish for years until he finally escapes. To restore his powers and help him rebuild his kingdom, he must find three tools. Through a series of short stories, Morpheus goes to hell, chases rogue nightmares and even meets William Shakespeare.
Can he succeed in his mission, or will the dream world be doomed for eternity?
Why should you read it? As any comic book fan knows, adapting the genre to different mediums is extremely hard to do well. Arguably the only franchise to have done it successfully is Marvel, until now. I would go so far as to say that Audible’s The Sandman is the perfect comic book adaptation. The audiobook captures the essence of the 10 comic book epic and twisted storyline with outstanding excellence. It allows newcomers and fans alike an enjoyable and thrilling peek into the universe of The Sandman and the characters that so many around the world love.
With a fantastic cast of voice actors, including but not limited to Michael Sheen, Andy Serkis, James McAvoy and Kat Dennings and some of the best audio production you will hear in an audiobook, this is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a listen this Halloween.
Genre: Thriller For Fans Of: Brian Freeman
What’s in the pages? Nate Overbay is dying from ALS; he suffers from PTSD and has lost his family. So, one morning, he decides to go to an eleventh-floor bank, climbs onto the window ledge and gets ready to jump. Then all of a sudden, a group of robbers burst into the bank and begin to shoot – with nothing left to lose, Nate’s solider training comes into effect. He takes them all out… except for one who leaves Nate with a cryptic warning.
Soon after the bank event, Nate is hailed a hero and considered a celebrity by many. He is then kidnapped by savage Russian mobsters who are the heist’s masterminds and is given an ultimatum – break into the bank and get what they need, or they kill his ex-wife and his teenage daughter. With no other option, Nate is thrust into an underworld of organised crime and conspiracy with his ex-family’s lives in the balance.
Why should you read it? The Survivor is a slow-burning page-turner with enough twists, turns and obstacles to make you feel like you’ve just come off a 372-page rollercoaster by the end of it.
Packed with fantastic characterisation, real struggle and shining a light on an often-misunderstood diagnosis (PSTD), this book had me hooked from the very start. Although the pacing can be temperamental towards the middle of the book, and the plot is highly farfetched (I do not say this lightly, go in expecting as much realism as the last Fast & Furious film). This novel is heart wrenching, exhilarating and will keep you guessing until the very end.
Do you like crime or thriller novels? If so, I suggest you suspend your disbelief and dive headfirst into this great book from the mind that brought you Orphan X.
Genre: Biography For Fans Of: Hallie Rubenhold
What’s in the pages? Hidden in London’s Bloomsbury District is Mecklenburgh Square. In this book, get ready to take a journey and learn about the students, artists and revolutionaries who lived there in the twentieth century.
Square Haunting tells the story of Mecklenburgh Square through the lives of five women who lived there throughout the ages: H.D, Dorothy L. Sayers, Virginia Woof, Eileen Power and Jane Harrison.
Why should you read it? With the novel Square Haunting, Francesca Wade manages to create a different kind of biography. Instead of being about one person and their life, it focuses on a place (Mecklenburgh Square) and five extraordinary women who lived there.
Interestingly, the book’s biographies focus solely on these mavericks’ impact on the world while they lived at the square. As a result, it ignores much of what happened before or after in their lives. Nevertheless, this is a refreshing way to write a biography; I have only seen it previously done in the equally impressive and poignant The Five by Hallie Rubenhold.
Follow the history of Mecklenburgh Square and the Bloomsbury Group in this fascinating and innovative biography of women who changed the world more than they could have ever known. Square Haunting is a crucial, grounding take on the social history of some of London’s most influential women – and it’s a great read too.