Spooky Sisters Book Club

Spooky Sisters Book Club

The book club of your weird, spooky dreams... Find your next weird, horror, spooky, spacey, should-be-more-popular read with Aurelien! Email spookysistersbookclub@gmail.com and tell me about your favorite weird read that more people should know about... Show More

Episodes

September 12, 2020 25 min

"Black winter had descended in a single night.”

 

Watch the tides and slip out in the cover of night for Daphne Du Maurier's "The Birds" (1952). It's a chilling, suspenseful story that's not really like the movie adaptation at all, and will fill your heart with dread. If you're a Shirley Jackson fan, add this one to your tbr! Spoilers ahead!

 

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* Theme: Magical Transition by Kevin McLeod
* Additional m...

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And now she sat so very quietly, so very still, like a living-dead doll staring out the window.

 

Buenas noches, spooky friends! This week, let Aurelien tell you all about how Georgina's perfectly planned life got flipped-turned upside down - by Death. Set during the Mexican Revolution, "This Strange Way of Dying" (2011) by Silvia Moreno-Garcia is a spooky dark historical love story about choosing your future and also, ...

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"She is only a ghost, and nobody believes in ghosts any longer."

 

Let's go back in time for book club this week, with Ellen Glasgow's 1920 ghost story "The Past". If you like classic gothic stories and spooky hauntings, but also want a protagonist who asks "wtf?", this one is for you. And, please, ignore the spiritual representation of trauma watching us from the corner. 

 

Episode references

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“The house was full of dead bodies, it seemed. It felt like a mechanical cemetery.”

 

Hey, spooky friends! It's a special, Bradbury birthday edition of book club. Aurelien discusses (and spoils!) her favorite Ray Bradbury short stories: the spacey sadness of "All Summer in a Day" and the visceral horror of "The Veldt". Plus: how it feels when a favorite author might be someone you wouldn't want to talk to at...

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"Darkness stood hushed and bulky beneath his kitchen window."

 

Bring a flashlight and stay out of the cellar! This week, Aurelien covers Ramsey Campbell's viscerally horrifying "The Brood" (1980). It's a dark, unsettling story about a lonely veterinarian and the strange happenings in the house next door. Who lives there? What are they doing with all those small animals? And do you hear those moaning, wailin...

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"Even when you’re dead, some things cut close to the bone."

 

Let's go to the mall, everybody! But be careful - you don't want to get stuck here, like the ghosts in "Old Habits" (2011) by Nalo Hopkinson. It's a short modern horror story that manages to pack in plenty of nightmares (and feelings). Spoilers ahead!

 

Episode references:

  • Read the story at Uncanny Magazine: https://uncannymagazine.com/article...
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    "...and there were the trooping faeries that would steal them all away to their underground hills for a hundred years."

     

    Meet by the edge of the wood and wear your best coat to book club for modern faery tale "The Coat of Stars" by Holly Black. It's a short and emotional story of lost love, faery bargains, and ethereal womenswear. Spoilers ahead! 

     

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    * Theme: Magical Transition by Kevin McLeod
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    "Not a spirit to be found, of course."

     

    Meet in the hidden passage at midnight for book club to discuss modern gothic comic "Women Do Not Creep by Daylight" (2019), written by Vera Greentea and illustrated by Kyla Vanderklugt. A spiritual descendent of "The Yellow Wallpaper", it's the story of a determined young woman, a crumbling old castle, and a mysterious green amulet. No spoilers in this one! 

     

    Ep...

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    "She was not quite sure what made her so nervous."

     

    Leave the city behind and join Aurelien at the lake house for Shirley Jackson's 1948 paranoia-inducing short story, "The Summer People". It's a story full of beautiful views, strange townspeople, and a distinct feeling of creeping dread.

     

    Episode References:

  • Explore US prices and wages by decade: https://libraryguides.missouri.edu/pricesandwages
  • Make an eg...
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    "The sound that wasn’t footsteps came closer."

     

    Do you hear that strange tapping? Better investigate before book club this week for "Come Closer" by Sara Gran (2003). It's a strange, dark, twisty horror story about identity, relationships, and the strength (and weakness) of our own minds. And also demons. 

     

    References

  • Listen to ep. 7 to learn about the Fox Sisters and their mysterious tapping
  • And ep. 8 for the ...
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    "I’m the picture of normalcy. June Cleaver with freeze-dried casseroles. Betty Crocker in a gas mask."

     

    Grab your emergency supplies and join Aurelien at book club for YA contemporary weird novel "Let's Call It A Doomsday" by Katie Henry. It's a wild ride through teen angst, clinical anxiety, world-ending prophecies, and friendship (awww). 

     

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    * Theme: Magical Transition by Kevin McLeod
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    "He had not known that he lived in so wild a region."

     

    This week, book club goes back to the '90s - the 1890s! With Ambrose Bierce's classic dark story "An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge". Set during the Civil War, it's the exciting tale of a lucky escape and a long journey home -- or is it? 

     

  • Read the story free online: http://ambrosebierce.org/owlcreekbridge.html
  • Listen to a wind harp: https://www.you...
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    "Days ago, we gave a man to the sea, but here she is, dancing."

     

    Hide the knives and bring the bleach for book club! This week, Aurelien read "My Sister, the Serial Killer" by Oyinkan Braithwaite. Set in Lagos, Nigeria, it's a modern, darkly funny take on a timeless story: girl meets boy, girl murders boy, girl gets sister to help dispose of boy's body in the dead of night, girl meets another boy... 

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    "This is a city where numberless aspirations can be fulfilled."

     

    This week, Aurelien discusses Ursula K. LeGuin's 1973 short story "The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas" and NK Jemisin's 2018 response, "The Ones Who Stay and Fight". What kind of world do you want to live in? What are you willing to fight for? And which part of these stories is sci-fi?

     

  • Read "The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas"...
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    When the world you know is out of reach, nothing is more welcome than a measurable reminder that it still exists.

     

    Explore distant planets, and moral quandaries, this week in book club for "To Be Taught, If Fortunate" by Becky Chambers. It's a futuristic space adventure, with lots of weird science, amazing planets, and a thoughtful, philosophical heart. 

     

    Episode references

  • Lisa Nip's research: https://www.media....
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    "I am the woman who goes back into the house because I can’t stand waiting on the lawn."

     

    Dana. Selena. Sara. Thomasin. Clarice. Join Aurelien and special guest, Brucker (from Film On the Rocks), to discuss Claire C. Holland's horror heroine inspired poetry collection "I Am Not Your Final Girl". We review a selection of poems and the horror movies that inspired them, talk about the origin of final girls, and s...

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    Something dark and menacing said, “Trick or treat.”

     

    Put out your nightly offering and join Aurelien in the basement for a non-spoilery review of spooky-ooky "Halloween Fiend" C.V. Hunt. It's a dark, atmospheric novella about a lost small town, held hostage by a menacing monster, and a man who tries to change things. If you're not quite ready for summer, or can't wait for October, this one is for you. (And that...

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    Open your mind - the head games are just getting started.

     

    Find the Anywhere key and join Aurelien and special guest Dustin (from Dustin and Katie Can Read), for book club to discuss 2008 horror fantasy graphic novel and 2020 Netflix show Locke & Key. We talk about the endlessly explorable Keyhouse, analyze our angsty characters, and compare the darkess of the show to the extreme darkness of the comics.

     

    Spoilers for Locke &a...

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    "I'd been waiting for the vampire for years when he walked into the bar."

     

    Murder! Intrigue! Glowing vampires! Let's meet in the back room at Fangtasia for book club to discuss supernatural cozy mystery "Dead Until Dark" by Charlaine Harris. First in the Southern Vampire series, and the inspiration for HBO's True Blood, it's dark, silly, fun. 

     

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    * Theme: Magical Transition by Kevin McLeod
    * Addit...

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    "There are storms more accommodating than I, wildfires less inclined towards defiance."

     

    Light a candle and join Aurelien in the cellar for book club, if you dare, to discuss two modern gothic tales of revenge. "Lullaby for a Lost World" by Aliette de Bodard and "These Deathless Bones" by Cassandra Khaw, excellently dark short stories, more horrifying, gruesome, and oddly empowering than you expect. 

     

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