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stretchkev

stretchkev

Joined November 2019

LibraryThing member stretch

TinyCat library

Stuff will be read. That is all that is promised.
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The Blue Salt Road by Joanne M Harris
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Seventeen by Hideo Yokoyama
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The Portable Edgar Allan Poe by Edgar Allan Poe
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stretchkev
Chopping Spree | Angela Sylvaine
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Mehso-so

I do like the Rewind or Die series, they are unapologetically campy horror that is short and to the point. Perfectly short slashers on a theme.

Camp Neverland - Campy witch story seeking revenge against the men/boys that have done them wrong. An actual witchy horror, which doesn‘t come that often. I bit eye rolling as a scientist reading about astrology type jiggery pokery.

Chopping Spree - twisted subversive 80s mall slasher. Great playlist.

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stretchkev
Dear Laura | Gemma Amor
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Mehso-so

Creepy pen pal stories are always a bit hard to pull off. This one is solid, the letters will put you on edge. The story around the letters lacked the details necessary to land the impact. It was an almost there book for me

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stretchkev
Go Down Hard | Ali Seay
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Pickpick

Reverse hunter-hunted story, uniquely told. Fun a readable slasher with a predictable ending but hella good ride. A total page turner.

26 likes1 stack add
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stretchkev
Only The Stains Remain | Ross Jeffery
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Pickpick

Jude and Kyle, close brothers, suffer horrible abuse from their uncles after the tragic death of their mother. The abuse is brutal, destroying any remenants of the childhood they had left. As an adult Jude seeks violent retribution. The revenge is sweet, liberating, freeing.

27 likes1 stack add
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stretchkev
Administrator | Taku Mayumura
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Mehso-so

Series of stories of future space governed by a administrator regime with a complex robotic structure. Highly contemplative, admins thinking about their role, their problems, thier unique worlds, their future, thier purpose. No conflict, no plots. Just a lot of contemplations. Not a book most will like.

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stretchkev
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Pickpick

Fated to be murdered from birth a pretty girl must try to make life. All the while people close to her violently pass. Reverse 4th wall breaking thriller. It's an indictment that it'd never get published in the mainstream but it should Yardley deserves a wider audience. A dark and original fairy tale full of fourth wall breaking explores the intricacies of destiny, death, beauty, personal relationships, and everyday life.

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stretchkev
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Bailedbailed

Yes, match fixing is bad and a thing in soccer. Corruption at the highest level taints the sport. Trouble with Declan Hill is that he is a crime reporter that wants the organized crime part of match fixing to be far more sinister than it actually is, far too conspiracy driven for my taste.

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stretchkev
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Pickpick

A very different coming of age story. A twelve year old boy determined to take part in a spelling bee and achieve one proud moment in his young life will ignore his drunk, abusive mother's death until after he achieves his goal. He just wants one proud moment before he disappears into the system. For days she rots in a festering house while the young boy continues to fend for himself and prepare for his big moment.

Reggie Jesus!! And also: stacked. 1mo
22 likes1 stack add1 comment
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stretchkev
Little Dead Red | Mercedes M. Yardley
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Pickpick

A modern day retelling of “Little Red Riding Hood“ of a young girl disappearing on her way to taking soup to her grandmother in a nursing home. Along the way she is preyed upon by a wolf she is all too familiar with. The mystery that unfolds and the actions of desperate mother seeing vengeance is a well written, perfectly paced, and twisted tale. Yardley has done this retelling justice even if the ending diverges from the original.

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stretchkev
My Bucketlist | Axel & Ash
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Bit of a TBR bucket list of some long-term books I want to get off the pile in next year or two. No real timeline to this, a reminder for things not forget.

RaeLovesToRead Love this... I need to make a Book Bucket List too! 😄 Neuromancer was seriously pants though...🤭 (sorry 😅) 3mo
stretchkev @RaeLovesToRead I think it might be a bust too... Even if it is a DNF it still off the list 🙂 3mo
22 likes2 comments
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stretchkev
Wordy Shipmates | Sarah Vowell
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Mehso-so

Two for One:

Laserwriter II: A very New York story; a New York of a certain time and place. Good story but I am very much not the New Yorker from that time or place.

Wordy Shipmates: Humorous recounting of the words spilled by the early colonists. Tries too hard to laugh out loud funny. Falls a bit flat.

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stretchkev
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Pickpick

A very comprohensive overview of the modern understaning of the peopleing of North America. It is expert account of the most current scientifc, cultural, and archeaological findings from the past right to the present. Can be dense she does not shy away from scitenific jargon, but isn't too academic to be outside the general audience grasp. Although it took me a minute to remeber all those lessons on DNA.

25 likes1 stack add
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stretchkev
Death Sentences | Chiaki Kawamata
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Pickpick

Death Sentences is a genre bending, page turner of a book that is impossible to fit into a box of any kind. Part hard boil detective, part literary survey of the surrealist movement, part dystopian science fiction, part thriller, all tied together by a Ring like plot device that is somehow incredibly readable.

BarbaraBB It sounds great but difficult too! 4mo
stretchkev @BarbaraBB The surrealist bits are pretty surface level, mostly there to add a bit of flavor, nothing too difficult. I no nothing about surrealism, besides learning a few names and a litany of “interesting“ deaths I'm still pretty clueless about them. Certainly a more cerebral aspect to the story than a typical thriller but not all that intellectually taxing either. Not everyone will be a fan of the stilted Japanese writing style. 4mo
BarbaraBB I mostly love that style. Thank you for explaining! I‘ll stack! 4mo
26 likes1 stack add3 comments
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stretchkev
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Bailedbailed

This one was too experimental for me to get a handle on.

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stretchkev
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Pickpick

While recovering from a nervous breakdown caused by her previous employment, an unnamed narrator takes a series of temp jobs. Looking for a perfect job that isn't really a job, more a simple task. With each new job requiring the narrator to become more emotionally invested, even as the job description becomes less challenging.

Really, this story is Tsumra's subtle exploration of Japanese workplace relations and entrenched gender bias.

Ruthiella Sounds great, though it also might hit a little too close to home. 😬 4mo
20 likes1 comment
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stretchkev
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Pickpick

Such a well written book, highly academic account of the very beginnings of Aum Shrinikyo to the destructive cult it has become. A study in the gradual turn to violence by a charismatic leader is universal and not unique to this one cult. There is something to be learned about all such movements from this incredibly thorough but readable study of a new religious movement turned sour.

Terrible cover.

Hazel2019 Lol yeah the cover could use some work. 4mo
17 likes1 stack add1 comment
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stretchkev
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Pickpick

A guy wrench account of a doc/victim of the days' after the atomic bombing of Hiroshima.

A personal diary not meant for publication it has a remarkable literary quality.

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stretchkev
Seven Japanese Tales | Junichiro Tanizaki
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Pickpick

The tattooist is about control, exacting pain - creating works of art. After meeting a woman of formidable potential, all the power is shifted to her. He loses himself to her and becomes the subjugated. Having withstood the pain with grace, the young woman rises to become like the women of the paintings, to reach her true potential.

This was my first bit of fiction from Junichiro Tanizaki, and I was blown away, great story from beginning to end.

Cathythoughts Great review! I never read The Makioka Sisters yet ( I‘ve had it awhile) so I‘ll stack this one 👍🏻😁 (edited) 5mo
Graywacke Yes, great post! A new author name to me. 5mo
23 likes1 stack add2 comments
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stretchkev
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Pickpick

A group of misfits use their unique skills to deliver the dead to their rightful resting place even if it entails some righteous retribution. Twisted, darkly comic manga that is graphic and is basically all the content warnings.

Digged every episodic story, and look forward to dipping into this series from time to time.

WARNING: graphic and doesn't shy away from horrible humans. Not for everyone!

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stretchkev
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Mehso-so

A bit too cozy of science fiction for me. Plus, I actively hate the robot. Think I need a story with a bit of teeth to keep me hooked.

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stretchkev
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Pickpick

I was never a dinosaur fossil kid, coming late to geology I got to fall for this little guy => the Trilobite.

Existing for some 270 million years, with 25,000 species, makes this in my book one of the coolest animals to ever roam the sea floor.

Full of spectacular pictures, this recently published this book is a definitive, well written reference to everything Trilobite, I mean everything from origin to what we understand about their color.

Graywacke This is cool. What do we know about their color? 5mo
stretchkev @Graywacke with some recentish examples cross-sectional analysis has revealed coloration striations that indicate the mottling, and even some of the exotic coloration with in the fossil record are in fact valid and not just hallmarks of the fossilization process. Obviously, the exoskeleton coloration is altered by the fossilization process but with new techniques and well-preserved examples are shedding light on camouflages, sexual selection, etc 5mo
stretchkev Any conclusion about colors and what they mean of course is a contentious topic with tons of debate. Still interesting to see the state of the science.

There are all kinds of things that I learned about Trilobites from this work that can't quite be covered in a Litsy review.
5mo
See All 7 Comments
rockpools And this right here is one of the reasons I love Litsy. Super fascinating randomness! 5mo
LiteraryinLawrence Trilobite will always remind me of the show Friends. 😋 5mo
Graywacke @stretchkev of course. I‘ll have to hunt down or wait for a longer review from you. I‘m taking home trilobite mottling. Lovely detail to imagine. 5mo
stretchkev @Graywacke Plan on getting something up on CR as soon as I find some way to post more of the beautiful 'examples' for general interest. Got to figure out an easy hosting site for multiple pictures at once. 5mo
25 likes7 comments
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stretchkev
Horrorama | Lucas Mangum, Matt Harvey, A S Coomer
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Panpan

A collection of 3 novellas inspired by B horror type movies. Maybe too inspired. These were cheesy side for me. Straight bargain bin B horror - the second story was probably the best of the 3. At least it didn't devolve into cheesy plot devices like the others.

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stretchkev
Untitled | Untitled
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Quick half year check-in on the BIF 2022 Challenge. A bit behind but I think I have this covered by the end of the year.

vivastory What did you think of the Hightower? I haven't read it, but I'm intrigued.... 6mo
stretchkev @vivastory It was really well written and good story about how far a mother's grief will drive her. One of the best body horror/ghost stories I've read in a while. Read it in a single sitting. It'll be on the list of the best reads of the year, but not sure if it'll be a favorite book list of all time type of read. Should review it here at some point lol.

I have her other book on the TBR, so hopefully her quality stays strong.
(edited) 6mo
BeeMagical I love the name of this challenge😂👏🏻 6mo
stretchkev @BeeMagical it's a great podcast for adding an endless amount of book recommendations! 6mo
vivastory Thanks! I just placed an order for it. I have really been enjoying indie horror authors the past few years, so looking forward to it. 6mo
12 likes5 comments
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stretchkev
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Pickpick

Akutagawa is a masterful short story writing. Translating the Dostoevskys' Parable of the Onion into Japanese cultural setting was so, so well done. A bad person saved from himself by making better choices, and the consequences of selfish choices, what compassion really means. A lot to think about in such a compact story.

Graywacke Cool 6mo
18 likes1 comment
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stretchkev
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Pickpick

A good primer on the history of flat earth ideas as well as the current state of the movement. Goes into how this fringe belief can lead down other often darker conspiracies. Can get lost in the weeds at times chasing those links. Written as reaction to Trump and other conservative movements which is going to date this one quickly.

25 likes1 stack add
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stretchkev
Hide | Kiersten White
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Mehso-so

Highly character driven and graphically light horror. Nice to have some very developed characters driving a story forward. It's a very good read. Just didn't like the characters decisions at the end. Didn't fit the tone. Bleak, absolute bleakness would fit better for this particular story.

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stretchkev
Hide | Kiersten White
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Nice little sentiment for a horror story!

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stretchkev
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Pickpick

Objectively not a good book, but reminds of the best 80s paperbacks:

- Terrible, awful irredeemable protagonists
- Paper thin characters used as pawns to drive action
- Body Horror that is on the borderline of gross
- Violence for violence‘s sake
- Questionable politics/philosophies -->regressive
- No sense of morality or reflection

Did wish it ended on a question rather than an answer, but that's western writing for you, wouldn't exactly rec.

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stretchkev
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Pickpick

Two intertwined families navigating injustice, the meaning family, and what it means to be a good person. In complex world of racial tensions and senseless violence. Not a comforting story about forgiveness. A realistic look at coming to terms with hard truths and what shape life can assume when your family is destroyed by an act of violence without justice being served, however that is defined.

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stretchkev
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Mehso-so

An immensely talented author, whose ideas and feminist ideals we're ahead of there time. But one also clearly conflicted by an inner turmoil. Each story has a great hook. A premise that's worth exploring. With flat, numb conclusions.

I think how this book was translated played a role in how flat and banal the endings where. I think Suski had a much more powerful voice that'd be better served with just one translator.

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stretchkev
The Test | Sylvain Neuvel
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Pickpick

The Test is impossible to summarize without giving away the plot. It‘s a harrowing read, filled with questions about ethics, psychology, and trauma. The test explores lots of dimension in a little over a hundred pages. Very worthwhile and short read.

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stretchkev
Pet Sematary | Stephen King
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Mehso-so

Not the biggest King fan. At least not his novels. To me they're overwritten. At least the narration of Michael C. Hall was very good. And for once the ending didn't suck. Probably King's creepiest horror novel, maybe would have been my favorite if I hadn't read It first.

Done with King's novels.

TheNeverendingTBR Have you read this? 8mo
stretchkev @TheNeverendingTBR Yeah a long time ago. Was the best Vampire book I ever read. Solid number 3 in the King too 5. Although everything after 3 for me is just ok. Excluding short stories, those I tend to like much more than the longer works. 8mo
30 likes1 stack add2 comments
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stretchkev
FantasticLand: A Novel | Mike Bockoven
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This is a surprisingly good story for something terribly named. Totally fun horror adjacent thriller!

ReadingOver50 One of my favorites! 9mo
27 likes1 stack add1 comment
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stretchkev
Some of Your Blood | Theodore Sturgeon
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Mehso-so

Certainly interesting dive into the psychos of a sociopath. Not exactly the most memorable of stories. I think how easy it was to "crack" the protagonist wasn't very realistic but the story would have dragged so for the best.

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stretchkev
The Other Black Girl | Zakiya Dalila Harris
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Mehso-so

Taking on interoffice politics, microaggressions, abject racism, and black hair care within the publishing industry was interesting for sure. I think as topics goes and feel and atmosphere it fits the horror genre. But the story is let down by a confusing narrative structure and stilted dialogue. The ideas are there, but for me the writing doesn't quite match the concept.

Addison_Reads I felt the same way about this one. I am curious to read more from her in the future because she has great ideas. 9mo
5feet.of.fury I was really enjoying it and then got to a certain point and was like “wait, wtf is this book about??” 😂 👩🏾‍🔬 8mo
stretchkev @5feet.of.fury For sure not the best transition to horror ever. In retrospect, not sure what this story was trying to be. 8mo
26 likes3 comments
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stretchkev
Slender Man | Anonymous
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Mehso-so

A mostly fun mixed media yarn about an internet age urban legend. The investigation and gossip bits was more interesting than the fictionalized story bits. Not particularly spooky, but neither is the slender man legend so... fitting

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stretchkev
The Summit of the Gods | Baku Yumemakura
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Pickpick

This is an enthralling manga about mountaineering that was unexpectedly fascinating. I still don't understand the drive to scale cliff faces in the winter. This certainly makes a dent in ignorance. Looking forward to Vol 2!

SRWCF Cool layout! I am endlessly fascinated by the fearlessness in those individuals who like to rock climb in any condition. 10mo
stretchkev @SRWCF It is a definitely a different mindset. Hard to understand how much risk they're willing to take. 10mo
30 likes2 comments
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stretchkev
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Mehso-so

A well researched well written book on an incredibly interesting topic.

Had some structural issues for me but i don't think the odd chapter breaks and reiteration are reasons not to read this one.

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stretchkev
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Pickpick

A beautifully written and harrowing novel that focuses on how the people that suffered under the Pinochet regime; the victims, the community, and the victimizers, all those who ended up broken. It's an impressive book about coming to terms with unspeakable events.

26 likes1 stack add
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stretchkev
Enter the Aardvark | Jessica Anthony
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Panpan

Supposed to be a cutting political satire. More a collection of tired clichés about politics told in a provocative way.

Some interesting tidbits about aardvarks', so no at all bad.

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stretchkev
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Pickpick

Such a bizarre and surreal collection of short stories.

Lots of twisted cosmic and body horror with illustrations that have forever been burned into my mind.

Graywacke Cool picture 11mo
28 likes1 comment
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stretchkev
Untitled | Untitled
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Made some more of my crazy official today. I do love label makers and my ereaders.

Anyone else name there's?

stretchkev And yes Octavo makes more sense than Quarto for an 8-inch device, but I like the sound of Quarto better, it is somehow less pretentious of the two pretentious sounding words (edited) 11mo
readordierachel This is a cool idea 💡 11mo
28 likes2 comments
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stretchkev
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Pickpick

After losing his love, Thiago, becomes increasingly disillusioned with his life. When weird occurrences keep happening. He makes a break for a new life far away from his troubles or at least he hopes.

This book is truly one of the more deeply creepy things I've read in while. Its a sinking pit of dread and sorrow until all that's left is the darkness. No escape just the dark. A confusing, bizarre enjoyable as hell read.

Cathythoughts Sounds interesting! Stacking 11mo
Reggie I have already stacked this or else I would have after reading your review. 11mo
30 likes2 comments
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stretchkev
Untitled | Untitled
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This looks open enough to accommodate my absolute chaotic style of reading, and I know where to get plenty of recommendations it is a fun podcast.

vivastory I enjoy this podcast too 11mo
Chrissyreadit Off to add another podcast to my playlist 11mo
Reggie I miss Rachel being on there with Stephanie. Another horror fiction podcast you might like is Talking Scared. Just a word of caution you might want to read the book before listening to any episode because he has a penchant for spoiling books. 11mo
stretchkev @Reggie Rachel is the best, she and Stephanie were great together. Have to check in with Rachel's youtube channel to get her awesome recommendations, but those two bouncing off each other is the best. I'll be sure to check out Talking Scared, so many horror podcasts focus on movies (which is great) but look for the more book focused ones. 11mo
27 likes4 comments
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stretchkev
Untitled | Unknown
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Thanks @Liz_M and @Graywacke for tagging me in #Top21of21 Feels like a good year with plenty of Japanese Lit and dark works topping the list.

It certainly is the most I've read in a year! Hard to get it to just 21.

Graywacke Oh, terrific collection 11mo
Ruthiella I‘m going to read this next week for sure 11mo
stretchkev @Ruthiella It really is an affecting book, that is so hard to fit into any one box. I hope you enjoy it whenever you get to it! 11mo
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Lcsmcat I liked The Great Passage a lot, too. 11mo
stretchkev @Lcsmcat It was surprising how much I ended up liking this one 11mo
BarbaraBB I love all the Japanese fiction. 11mo
Chelsea.Poole Nice! I have Penance scheduled for a challenge in 2022. For social horror I believe. 🤔 11mo
stretchkev @Chelsea.Poole It‘d certainly work for that prompt! Real World might too if looking for a backup. 11mo
Chelsea.Poole Thank you! And the covers are so similar too! 11mo
Reggie Cirque Berserk and The Fire Next Time! 11mo
45 likes11 comments
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stretchkev
The Trees: A Novel | Percival Everett
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Pickpick

An amazingly good dark humor revenge tale from a societal perspective.

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stretchkev
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Mehso-so

Certainly some interesting tidbits here. Doughty's humor was a miss for me too cringe but that is the way it goes. Glad i tried her book might look into her talks some more, it is an interesting subject in small doses.

28 likes1 stack add
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stretchkev
The Sniper | Kuo-Li Chang
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Bailedbailed

A thriller full of ‘guy‘ details. Not much story here or at least not a compelling one.

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stretchkev
My Heart Is a Chainsaw | Stephen Graham Jones
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Mehso-so

Great writing and fun book. Wish it was drawn out more.

Addison_Reads There's supposed to be a sequel to this one. 12mo
stretchkev @Addison_Reads Yeah, heard that in an interview with Jones on some horror podcast I listen to. I think it'll be a wait and see kind of book for me, love the concept if he'd tone down the slasher killing the entire town bit I'd for sure be on board 12mo
21 likes2 comments
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stretchkev
Paperbacks from Hell | Grady Hendrix
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Mehso-so

Fun little trip down pulp horrors hay day. Remembered quite a few titles I forgot and added a couple of the gems from this retrospective. Grady was perfect for this well versed in the subject but doesn‘t treat it reverence. You got to laugh at some of this, an ultra serious tone would have been wrong here.

I forgot what it was like to sift through the trash to find the garbage!