izombiebook2What would you do if you couldn’t remember who you are? If when you tried to remember your past experiences, you froze and realized you couldn’t remember anything? This problem happens to Gwen on a daily basis, but luckily she’s found a way to sort of fix this problem: she eats the brains of the recently deceased. Did I forget to mention Gwen is a zombie? She is…

In iZombie: Dead to the World, readers are introduced to the undead life of Gwen Dylan, a zombie who works as a gravedigger at an eco-friendly cemetery and who also lives in one of the vaults at said cemetery. Gwen keeps company with a were-terrier that she’s nicknamed Spot and a ghost best friend who has been dead since the 1960s. If her life sounds weird already, Gwen has to eat a human brain about once a month, so she doesn’t turn full zombie and also so she can keep her memories intact. Interesting little tidbit about that brain eating: Gwen is flooded by the dead person’s memories and thoughts right after she eats their brains and as a result, she feels the urge to help them fill their last requests: be it through finding their killer or delivering a message to their mourning families. Gwen has a lot on her plate, but she soon discovers that there are visitors to her town who are there to kill any paranormal creature who is existing when they should really be dead. Throw in Halloween, a full moon, a pack of blood-thirsty female vampires, and a mysterious mummy man who wants Gwen to join him in his killing of not-so-innocent people, and Gwen soon realizes her peaceful life is about to go crazy.

If this first volume sounds interesting to you, keep your eyes on our shelves for the release of the next three volumes. You can also check out the television show, iZombie, whose first season is available for check out at all three Davenport Public Library locations.

If you are a big fan of  scary movies, you should definitely check out  Paranormal Activity.   I saw the commercials, which were especially creepy and scary, and when a copy was available at the library I hesitated at first, but then decided to watch it.  I am glad that I didn’t watch it alone! 

A young couple, Katie and Micah, move into a new home near San Diego and are wary of strange sounds and activity in the middle of the night.  Trying to  figure out what is exactly happening when they are asleep, Micah sets up a video camera to capture what goes bump in the night.  Much of what the viewer sees is through the eyes of the camera.  The events start out small – unexplained footsteps and doors closing themselves.  But, as time goes on more ominus things start to happen to the couple.  By the end of the movie the paranormal happenings escalate so much, you have no idea what is next and the ending is definitely shocking.  The DVD contains an alternative ending which is worth watching too.  

I am normally not a fan of horror films, but Paranormal Activity was a fun watch and scary movie.  I checked out Paranormal Activity 2 which is a prequel to this movie that was just released and I will blog about it soon!

In addition to listening to an audiobook while on a long car ride, books on CD are a great way to pass the time while gardening or listening to while cleaning the house, or just about anything else!  One of my most recent discoveries is a great mystery with a hint of “chick lit,” Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella.

Young, London-based businesswoman Lara Lington has just learned that her 105-year old great-aunt has just passed away – an aunt that she did not even know.  While attending Sadie’s funeral, Lara hears voices and catches an occasional glimpse of a young woman dressed in 1920s attire.  She then realizes that the young woman is not an illusion but is actually the ghost of Sadie at age 23!  Sadie has decided to relentlessly haunt her grand-niece in order to nearly force Lara to help her find her most prized possession, a dazzling, diamond, dragonfly necklace that was stolen before she died.   The pair form an unlikely duo that argue, confide in each other and share a friendship in the most unlikely of ways – all while solving the mystery of the missing necklace.

Twenties Girl has a little bit for everyone -mystery, romance, intrigue and comedy.  A definite recommended read – you may find yourself  circling your block a few dozen times to find out how the book ends!

Even if you’ve outgrown trick-or-treating, you can still get into the spirit of the season with some great, ghostly reads.

More Than You Know by Beth Gutcheon. Looking back on the events of the summer she was 17, elderly Hannah Grey recalls her memories of love and loss, and of the ghost who haunted her and the boy she loved. Set on the Maine coast, this evocative novel is a “humdinger of a ghost tale”.

Eva Moves the Furniture by Margot Livesey. Motherless Eva has been lovingly raised by her father and sister, but she is still often lovely. When she’s visited by invisible companions, she takes comfort in their presence. However, keeping them secret cuts her off from others. Who these companions are and their roles in Eva’s life form the center of this intriguing story.

Sleeping with Schubert by Bonnie Marson. Brooklyn lawyer Liza Durbin is possessed by the spirit of composer Franz Schubert – and her life will never be ordinary again. Follow along as Liza takes a leave of absence from her law firm to prepare for her Carnegie Hall debut, struggles with a media frenzy and her quirky family for a fun and entertaining read.

Second Glance by Jodi Picoult. Ghost hunter Ross Wakeman wants nothing more than to be reunited with his dead fiancee, but nothing he does can bring her back. Sent to a small Vermont town to investigate possible paranormal phenomena leads him to an ancient murder and possible redemption. The intricate and suspenseful ghost story will keep you enthralled to its powerful conclusion.

A Gracious Plenty by Sheri Reynolds. Disfiguring scars from a childhood accident has made Finch Nobles an outcast in her tiny Southern town. After her parents die, Finch takes over her father’s job as a gravedigger, where she befriends not the living but those who haunt the graveyard and control the seasons. This lyrical novel is sure to charm.

Halloween is fast approaching, and of course this makes an ideal time to read some of those gory horror books. However, if you’re not a big Horror fan (like me) you might enjoy these titles of a kinder, gentler nature.

Brida by Paul Coelho

Well, I should’ve known better. This popular Spanish author, Paul Coelho, has written other books about witches (The Witch of Portobello most recently) but from the title and the cover art, I guess I was expecting something different. And, really, it’s more of a light romance. The main character, Brida, is a 21 year old Irish lass who wants to become a witch, so the story line revolves around her search and/or efforts to become one. There’s some pulling together of Christian and spiritualist themes which I personally didn’t understand, but then, I kept reminding myself that it was a work of fiction.

Mozart’s Ghost by Julia Cameron

As for ghosts, I’m just finishing up Mozart’s Ghost, by Julia Cameron. This, also, has turned out to be a light romantic story. Here, the main character is Anna, a 30-something “medium –medium” as she calls herself. Anna moved to New York a few years ago in part to escape the conservative Midwestern views present in her home town of Ann Arbor, Michigan. In order to pay the rent, she teaches school by day, but her main focus is to establish herself as a medium, someone who helps others contact recently departed loved ones (i.e. – ghosts). When a struggling young pianist moves into her apartment building, she finds his constant practicing very distracting. Even more disturbing, though, are the frequent intrusions she gets from Mozart’s ghost, who is anxious for Anna to “help” the pianist correctly interpret his complex musical compositions. I’m not going to spoil the ending for you. Besides, as I said, I haven’t finished it – yet!

Unfortunately, I really haven’t read any goblin stories recently – but if you’d like to recommend one, I’d certainly give it a shot. Meanwhile, I hope you enjoy these “Halloween Light” suggestions.