Book Chatter: Chilling reads for chilly days

With the autumnal equinox coming up fast, you might have noticed some changes happening around you. Leaves are turning orange. Days are getting shorter and colder. Pumpkin spice lattes are taking over social media.

"Forward, men! Avenge our pureed brethren!"

“Forward, men! Our brethren must be avenged!”

With these changes, of course, come renewed reasons to curl up on the couch for a few hours with a good book. And what better book to read during an autumn storm than something spine-tingling?


First on my recommendation list is Gillian Flynn’s bestseller Gone Girl, which spins the tale of a beautiful, vivacious woman who suddenly goes missing from her small midwestern town. A quarter of the way through, I thought I had an idea of what had happened. Halfway through, I was feeling pretty smug about my hunch.

And then in the space of a couple of pages, Flynn completely pulled the rug out from under me. I didn’t see that plot twist coming at all, and I couldn’t have been more delighted by my shock. Flynn is a maestro in Gone Girl, twitching strings and pulling curtains even more masterfully than even the antagonist. You’ll be thoroughly chilled and winded by the end, I promise.


Next up is Suzanne Rindell’s excellent first novel, The Other Typist. Rose Baker is a typist at a police station in 1923, measuring out her days in bland meals and lukewarm coffee. Then a new woman joins the typing pool: the unspeakably glamorous Odalie, who decides to take Rose under her wing and show her a whole new side of New York City. For the increasingly devoted Rose, it’s all champagne and silk dresses until a whispered story reaches her ears — a story that hints at Odalie’s involvement in something dark … something that could drag Odalie down, and take Rose right down with her.


Finally, there’s Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None (formerly Ten Little Indians). If you’ve been meaning to put some Agatha Christie on your “completed” shelf but you weren’t sure where to start, And Then There Were None is an excellent entry point. It follows ten strangers who were summoned to a remote island for a weekend. As they begin to share their stories and the reasons they came to the island, it becomes increasingly clear that their mysterious host had only one reason for bringing them all there — and it involves a sinister poem and ten small figurines that are being broken one by one …

Pro tip: Check the weather forecast before doing a solo trip to a creepy island.

Pro tip: Check the weather forecast, take your phone charger, and tell someone when you plan to return from a solo weekend trip to a creepy island.

What spine-tingling reads do you have lined up for the next stormy day?


Photo credits: Pumpkin horde from beeki and Andreas Achenbach painting via tpsdave on Pixabay; book covers via Better World Books.


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