Happy July! I don’t know about you but I simply can not believe that we have made it through half of the year. Where in the world has the time gone?
It’s been a long time since I’ve posted a TBR. The reality is I really don’t like TBRs because I feel that puts a lot of undue pressure and stress on me. However, I’m really excited about this TBR. I’ve been in a wanting to read horror kind of mood lately and having said that I’ve decided to satisfy that want, that need with an entire month dedicated to scary/spooky reads.
When I was deciding on the books to read for this month, I wanted to make sure that it had a mix of BIPOC authors. And, without further adieu, let’s jump into my July TBR.
This month’s TBR is pretty ambitious for me with a whopping 11 books.
Title: Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi
Genre: LGBTQIA+, Contemporary
Publisher: Grove Press
Pub. Date: February 13, 2018
Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi – Before you get your panties in a bunch and hop into my comments. I know Freswater is not horror. This has been on my TBR for a minute and I made plans to buddy read this with Brian at Bookish. He’s a booktuber and you can find his channel HERE. I definitely recommend you check him out.
Title: In the Miso Soup by Ryu Murakami
Translator: Ralph McCarthy
Pub. Date: 1997
This was recommended to me by a coworker. Actually, that’s not true she recommended the movie and me being me was like, “Oh, no. I will read the book.” Yepper, I can read horror all day and night but can’t watch a horror flick to save my life.
Title: Fever Dream by Samantha Schweblin
Translator: Megan McDowell
Publisher: Riverhead Books
Pub. Date: October 2, 2014
A young woman named Amanda lies dying in a rural hospital clinic. A boy named David sits beside her. She’s not his mother. He’s not her child. Together, they tell a haunting story of broken souls, toxins, and the power and desperation of family.
Title: Out by Natsuo Kirino
Translator: Stephen Snyder
Pub. Date: July 15, 1997
This has been on my TBR for years and a couple of months ago, I finally picked up a copy at one of my favorite used bookstores. In out a young mother who the works night shift making boxed lunches brutally strangles her deadbeat husband and then seeks the help of her co-workers to dispose of the body and cover up her crime. Masako the ringleader quickly discovers that this killing is merely the beginning and it leads to a terrifying foray into the violent underbelly of Japanese society.
Title: Ring Shout by P. Djèlí Clark
Pub. Date: October 13, 2020
This one a reread. I originally received this as an eARC from Netgalley a few days before publication. I read it really fast in order to provide feedback. I enjoyed it, but I feel like I missed some things. So, I figured I’d add it this TBR. Ring Shout is a dark fantasy historical novella that gives a supernatural twist to the Ku Klux Klan’s reign of terror.
Title: The Ballad of Black Tom by Victor LaValle
Pub. Date: February 16, 2016
The Ballad of Black Tom is considered Lovecraftian as it explores Charles Thomas Tester hustles to put food on the table. But when he delivers an occult tome to a reclusive sorceress in the heart of Queens, Tom opens a door to a deeper realm of magic, and earns the attention of things best left sleeping. LaValle uses “The Horror at Red Hook” H. P. Lovecraft’s most explicitly racist works as the backdrop for The Ballad of Black Tom.
Title: The Blind Owl by Sadegh Hedayat
Translator: D.P. Costello
Publisher: Grove Press
Pub. Date: 1936
The Blind Owl is Sadegh Hedayat’s magnum opus and a major literary work of 20th century Iran. Written in Persian, it tells the story of an unnamed pen case painter, the narrator, who sees in his macabre, feverish nightmares that “the presence of death annihilates all that is imaginary. We are the offspring of death and death delivers us from the tantalizing, fraudulent attractions of life; it is death that beckons us from the depths of life.
Title: The Fifth Child by Doris Lessing
Publisher: Vintage International
Pub. Date: 1988
The Fifth Child is a contemporary gothic horror story about the birth of Harriet and David Lovatt’s fifth child, Ben – a baby who seems less than human. Harriet finds she is unable to to love him, David can’t bring himself to touch him, and the four other children are afraid of him. Lessing’s novel probes society’s unwillingness to recognize its own brutality.
Title: The Good House by Tananarive Due
Pub. Date: 2003
The Good House follows Angela Toussaint as she returns to her late grandmother’s home in Sacajawea, Washington. The home is beloved by the townspeople, but that all changes when an unexpected tragedy takes place behind its closed doors. Angela’s son, Corey commits suicide. Could it be related to a terrifying entity Angela’s grandmother battled seven decades ago?
Title: The Good Son by You-Jeong Jeong
Pub. Date: May 14, 2016
The Good Son is a chilling psychological thriller by the novelist known as Korea’s Stephen King. Twenty-six year-old You-jin wakes one morning to a metallic smell and the body of his mother’s bloodied body at the bottom of the stairs. He doesn’t remember much from the night before, however, he has a faint impression of his mother calling his name. But was she calling for help? Or begging for her life?
Title: The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones
Pub. Date: May 14, 2016
The Only Good Indians follows four American Indian men after a disturbing event from their youth puts them in a desperate struggle for their lives. Tracked by an entity bent on revenge, these childhood friends are helpless as the culture and traditions they left behind catch up to them in a violent, vengeful way.
That last one is one I want to read too! I’m nervous about tackling The Blind Owl (it is super short, I know).
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I’m excited about them both. I found this Youtube video that talks about The Blind Owl and it may help you overcome your nervousness.
The Blind Owl of Sadegh Hedayat with Jason Reza Jorjani