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Monday, September 01, 2014

Time for RIP IX !

Time for Carl's RIP Challenge

The first challenge was in 2006 (that hardly seems possible), and that year I read:

 The House on the Borderland, a short novel by William Hope Hodgson, written in 1908.  I chose it because Hodgson was an influence on H.P. Lovecraft, who called Hodgson's work "cosmic horror."  I didn't like it all that much, in spite of all of the Gothic elements, but I'm glad I read it.

Lolly Willows or The Loving Huntsman by Sylvia Townsend.  This was actually The Book of the Month Club's first 1926.  My main interest was in the way Townsend rearranged The Wild Hunt myth.

The Wyvern Mystery by Sheridan J. Le Fanu, who cannot hold a candle to Wilkie Collins in any way, but remains a classic in the genre.

The Haunted Hotel by Wilkie Collins--not his best and written near the end of his life,   THH is very short.  But  Collins at his worst still beats Le Fanu.  At his best, Collins is Mr. Gothic for me.  The Woman in White by Collins remains one of my favorite books of all times.  I read it in high school (along with The Moonstone), then reread for a later RIP challenge and was delighted to find it still kept me engrossed, beginning to end.

The Keep by Jennifer Egan, a much more contemporary choice, but unlike the majority of readers, I didn't much care for it.

Death in the Garden by Elizabeth Ironside was a pleasure to read.  Has some similarities to Lolly Willows with a theme of a woman's quest for independence from a domineering male, but for me this story was eminently more readable.  Part I deals with Diana Pollexfen's acquittal of her husband's murder.  Part II moves to the days preceding his death, and Part III moves forward sixty years when Diana's grand-niece and heir finds Diana's diaries.

Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris is the first in the Harper Connelly series.  Harper can find dead people.  Got a missing body?  Harper might be able to help you locate it.  I've read a couple in this series since then.  While not a fan of the Sookie Stackhouse series by Harris (please don't hate me),  I have thoroughly enjoyed the Harper Connelly series.


I'm starting this year's Challenge with The Carpathian Assignment.  Initially, I got a garbled version from NetGalley, but when I mentioned that I was interested in the book, just couldn't decipher the e-manuscript, the publisher sent me an ARC in the mail.  Started it yesterday! 

You guessed it, Dracula and Transylvania.  

Visit Stainless Steel Droppings if you'd like to join the fun!  You can choose to read or watch films or television or combine the two.

I'm watching The Night Watchman's Journal, can't wait for the  next episodes to be released.  Another good Kdrama for this Challenge is Arang and the Magistrate.

My Eccentric figures for Halloween continue to take shape.
Marigold the Hedge Witch likes to be prepared.


  1. The Carpathian Assignment sounds good. Hope you've fun with this reading challenge!

  2. Okay you convinced me! My favorite time of year & my favorite genre (books or movies): oh the horror!

  3. Melody - It is interesting so far. The writing reminiscent of Stoker's style and tells the Dracula story from the perspective of Hungarians.

    I always enjoy reading for this challenge and seeing what others are reading for this challenge. :)

  4. Death in the Garden sounds like my kind of book.

  5. Deb - and I think The Walking Dead qualifies for Peril of the Screen, don't you? Not that you are a fan or anything...!

  6. Mac n' Janet - I always intended to read more by this author. I'm glad I looked back to 2006 and "rediscovered" her!

  7. I love Marigold the Hedge Witch! She really is prepared, isn't she?

    I always think this challenge starts the beginning of fall. I don't know why I forget it starts at the beginning of September.

  8. Thanks, Wendy! I spent more time on Marigold's clothes and details than on her body.

    I know, it seems like the RIP Challenge should match the weather better. September here means high nineties which doesn't feel much like fall!

  9. How is it possible that this is year 9 for RIP? I look forward to seeing what books you read and hearing more about The Carpathian Assignment!

  10. Oh I did NOT care for The Keep. You are not the only one!

  11. Stefanie - I know! And I still look forward to it after 9 years!

    Jenny - Oh, good! I remember all the positive reviews and feeling odd-man-out at the time!