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Books, Challenges

My Foray into Reading Challenges

Every year around this time, my friend and fellow blogger Alison mentions that she is taking part in a yearly reading challenge (this year, it has been termed an event) called R.I.P. This delightfully spooky happening, hosted by Carl of Stainless Steel Droppings, asks readers and bloggers to commit to “imbibing all things ghastly and ghostly” during the months of September and October and then to share what they’ve read with others. Seeing as I have a taste for these types of entertainment all year round and I always read/watch more creepiness in October than any other month, I figured this had to be the year that I stop just watching from the sidelines and actually participate.

There are a number of “perils” that readers can sign up for, and though it seems ambitious, I’m going to shoot for three: Peril the First (4 books that fit the R.I.P. criteria: “mystery, suspense, thriller, dark fantasy, gothic, horror, supernatural, or anything sufficiently moody that shares a kinship with the above”), Peril of the Short Story (short stories that also fit the R.I.P. criteria, as many as you choose) and Peril on the Screen (films and television shows that, of course, fit the R.I.P. criteria; again, as many as you choose).

Peril on the Screen will be no challenge at all, as Dut and I watch horror films like it’s our job in the crisp autumn air. But, I must admit, this event will be a nice excuse to read and watch some of the reading material and films that I’ve been meaning to watch for ages, but have never gotten around to. Surely this list will grow and change as the months ensue, but for now, my list of perils:

Books
House of Leaves, Mark Z. Danielewski
The Graveyard Book
, Neil Gaiman
The Thirteenth Tale
, Diane Sutterfield
The Island of Dr. Moreau, H.G. Wells
The Invisible Man, H.G. Wells
Oryx and Crake, Margaret Atwood
The Passage, Justin Cronin
The Haunting of Hill House, Shirley Jackson (my annual October re-read)

Short Stories
The Country of the Blind, H.G. Wells
The Star, H.G. Wells
Masterpieces of Mystery and the Unknown, Agatha Christie
Shadow Show, edited by Sam Weller
Brave New Worlds, edited by John Joseph Adams
Wastelands, edited by John Joseph Adams
Like so many others, some Poe and Lovecraft

Films (Some of these are re-watches and this list will surely grow)
Carrie (1976), directed by Brian DePalma
The Haunting (1963), directed by Robert Wise
Rosemary’s Baby (1968), directed by Roman Polanski
The Orphanage (2007), directed by J.A. Bayona

Here’s to a delightfully creepy September and October. It’s all going to begin with House of Leaves, which I’m currently reading, and which is already giving me shivers at 11:00 on a sunny morning…

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About Cory Hershberger

Neurotic/eclectic critic obsessed with pop culture who enjoys good food, good company, and, most of all, good books.

Discussion

4 thoughts on “My Foray into Reading Challenges

  1. Woo! Always happy to sucker someone into reading all the books. You should recommend some good movies for me!

    Posted by Alison | August 31, 2012, 12:44 pm
    • Ask and ye shall receive: My very favorite horror film is Rosemary’s Baby, but I also love Don’t Look Now, Wait Until Dark, Hitchcock’s Rebecca (watch this if you won’t ever read the book!), Psycho, Rear Window, Session 9 and Perfect Blue. That’s a nice sampler of creepy flicks, I think!

      Posted by Cory Hersh | August 31, 2012, 2:13 pm
  2. ohhh the Thirteenth Tale is a fabulous read!! I can’t wait to read your review of it.

    Posted by deslily | August 31, 2012, 4:20 pm
  3. Hooray for getting off the sidelines and joining in! Great to have you with us, especially since you obviously share a kindred love of this kind of ghastly goodness. Thanks so much for joining in!!!

    Like Pat I’ll bang the drum for The Thirteenth Tale. It is a favorite.

    We do a bunch of appropriate film watching during the later part of Sept. and all through October every year as well. Just like with the reading I never get enough time to watch all that I would like to watch. Still, its fun to work in as much as one can.

    Posted by Carl V. | September 5, 2012, 12:14 am

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"Lock up your libraries if you like, but there is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind."

-Virginia Woolf, "A Room of One's Own"

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