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Once again it’s that time of year for those who love spooky stories, spooky outfits, and spooks in general to get out their costumes and their tales of the macabre and prepare for Trick or Treat, Trunk or Treat, or a Halloween Party. It might come as a surprise to you that despite my love of psychos and the thrillers they inhabit, I rarely choose a book that would qualify as horror. So, for this month of ghosts and goblins, I had to settle for the weird and creepy featuring a stalker that seems normal but she isn’t, a unique plan for revenge where an old lady dressed up as a witch shows her face at a window, a Las Vegas casino performer who really can read minds, and, to close out the month, a story that actually features ghosts!
By Joshilyn Jackson
Narrated by the Author
Typically I avoid author-narrated books because my experience has been that the authors tend to merely read their words rather than giving a performance. Not so with Joshilyn Jackson. She brings her characters to life and makes a complex storyline easy to follow. Bree Cabbat is living a Cinderella life until the day her infant son goes missing. A bitter woman whose only daughter didn’t get the same happy ending as Bree is bent on a unique form of revenge against those who stole her daughter’s HEA and she has chosen Bree and her son as the instrument. There can be no happy ending to this dark tale, but the author will definitely keep you guessing and you will likely be satisfied with her conclusion.
By Minka Kent
Narrated by Saskia Maarleveld
I’m sure if you do very much reading or listening, you occasionally come across a storyline that you believe you could have done much more justice than the author. My response is always it’s the author’s book and he or she can write it any way he or she wants to. I had to really poke myself at the end of The Watcher Girl to remind my inner critic of this principle. It’s not so unusual for the role of psycho to change from one person to another, but author Minka Kent just never convinced me that the do-si-dos performed by these characters is anything less than a stretch leading to an ending that is unworthy of this dark tale. Please don’t let my review discourage you from listening. Saskia Maarleveld gives her usual excellent performance and the author definitely kept my attention. I just wanted everything to turn out differently. Sorry, Ms. Kent.
By Tim Tigner
Narrated by Paul Michael
I have to admit the book description was what intrigued me about Tim Tigner’s Stolen Thoughts. Have you ever wished you knew what someone was thinking? Would it make a difference to you in your personal life, in your business, or even in your peace of mind? Victoria Pixler is a unique individual. Through the magic of her own scientific research, she is able to read minds. Her strength of character is almost too good to be true because she chooses to use her discovery to entertain rather than to pursue personal gain. What she doesn’t know is that someone else found the magic first and their goals aren’t as altruistic as hers. It’s no surprise they want to kill her before she is able to disclose what they all know. Narrator Paul Michael sets just the right tone for a storyline that isn’t really supernatural but is definitely creepy!
By Robyn Peterman
Narrated by Jessica Almasy
Closing out October’s Best is a book which certainly didn’t appeal to me because of it’s cheesy title. Nor did it connect me with an author or narrator I love since neither are known to me. Rather it was the book description that said “you need to listen to this one.” Do you believe in ghosts? Do you believe in an afterlife? Do you ever wonder if one of your friends might be someone who communicates with the dead? Even if your answer to each of these questions is “no”, you will be highly entertained by Robyn Peterman’s It’s a Wonderful Midlife Crisis and its talented narrator Jessica Almasy. There are mean people, there are nice people, there are live people, and there are dead people. There are even a couple of lovable dogs. Something for everyone, right? Before you get too excited, there is a caveat. The book is first in a series, so the ending may leave you saying “WHAT???” Or possibly you’ll just want more of Miss Daisy and her friends. This is the perfect book to close out Halloween month for those of you who like the supernatural without the horror.