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Book Club: October

For the month of October I wanted to choose a psychological thriller that took place around an abandoned school, that deals with an unexpected “suicide”, spirits, and a woman named Gloria who brings the past back into her life.

The Child Garden by Catriona McPherson is a riveting novel that will draw you from the very beginning. The story takes place around a school named Eden, that was once known as “An alternative school for happy children”. However, the school had closed its doors due to a suicide that had taken place behind its own walls. Years after it closed it became a care home, with only one neighbor named Gloria Harkness, due to the fact that her son is in the care home and she wishes to be near him.
Everything for Gloria begins to change when an old childhood friend comes back into her life, and tells her that a girl is stalking him, stating that she is from Eden. Gloria begins to unravel the past and uncovers secrets that she had never known about.

With it being October I believe that this book will keep you on the edge of your seat while you are lounging about in your home. So grab a nice hot drink, plop on the couch or bed, and dive into the world of The Child Garden, you won’t regret it.

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The Giggling Swings: A Short Story

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It is said that on all hallows eve, if you journey to the park that is situated on the outskirts of town you will be able to hear the voices of the little ones that were brutally murdered in 1943. Park your car a block away from the park, then walk towards it with caution. Keep your eyes wide open and your ears perked for you will hear the whispers and giggles of the little girls and boys.

At the stroke of midnight, you sit on the park bench, with your eyes wide open placed on the swings about fifty yards away. At first you may see nothing but once it is 12:01 the shadows appear and begin to dance around the swings. The giggles from all of the children will fill your ears to the brim, while you have a slight smile upon your face. But soon enough that smile will disappear, just as the giggles will submerge into the darkness. For the dark figure from 1943 has suddenly appeared.

The screams of the children fill the midnight air, bringing you to tears. One child notices you, a small little boy with a hat on his head and green eyes, his eyes are filled with dread and fear. He mouths to you in the dark, run. You cannot move, you’re frozen on the park bench. The dark shadow that has been glaring at the children turns its attention to you. Although you cannot see its face, you know it’s a man and he is smiling at you. Slowly he walks towards you, making your whole body quiver, your heart drop and your face turns pale. You wish to move, you wish to run away from the park back to your vehicle, then you realize that your fear is coming alive. The shadow is now towering over you, you take one last look at it┬ábefore you are taken off.

Next Hallows Eve…

You see a young man sitting on the park bench, it is now 12:01, all of the children have come out to play and hear a low laugh appear to your left. You know what’s about to happen, it has happened many times before, the shadow turns its attention to the man on the park bench and smiles that grimacing smile. You try to yell, try to get the young man’s attention, alas you fail. Your voice has been taken, your mouth shown shut and you are nothing but a wandering soul in the midnight hour. The young man sees the shadow, acknowledges it and suddenly he is joining you by your side.

Since 1943 at 12:01 this takes place, in a small town in the middle of nowhere at the park on the outskirts of town. This shall continue to happen until the end of time.

 

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The River of Styx: Poem

 

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I sit in the boat with my eyes glued on the river up ahead,
The sounds of the water rushing below us and his humming made everything so eerie.

The paddle raised out of the water,
then slowly went back in,
guiding us up this long river of the dead.
The man behind me stared blankly at the formation of the rocks,
with a stoic look on his face and a voice that hummed a song.
Before I knew it the boat had stopped,
the voice of the man behind growled “This is where you get off.”
One step onto the rocky terrain,
I knew this is where I will stay.
For the man behind these gates,
Is the one who holds my soul in his jars made from clay.

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Book Club: June

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For the month of June, I wanted to do something a little bit different. Since I have started this little book club, I have given you all recommendations for books that are more suited for adults. But for the month of June, I wanted to do something that would get the parents and their children involved in reading. So the chosen book is “Pumpkin Moonshine” by Tasha Tudor.

Pumpkin Moonshine is about a young girl who finds the fattest pumpkin at the pumpkin patch and wants to carve it for Halloween, but before she is able to carve the pumpkin, she must first take the pumpkin home safely without any problems and then she will finally be able to carve it just in time for the holiday. The book is very short, only forty pages long and was released 1938. This book was created by Mrs. Tudor for her niece and her niece’s husband.

The reason why I chose this book for the month of June, even though Halloween isn’t for a few months, is due to the fact that Tasha Tudor has been one of my favorite authors and illustrators. She helped illustrate, “The Secret Garden”, “The Night Before Christmas”, and “A Time to Keep”. Not only that, she has released many other books that she wrote and illustrated herself. Personally, I think she is one the best out there. Sadly though, in 2008, Mrs. Tudor passed away. Although she passed away, her books and artwork will always be treasured by those who have read her work and have studied her style of drawing. This book is perfect for young kids, and it is perfect the parents to get involved as well with this story. It would make a great bedtime story for the parents to read to their children. The book is available all over the internet and easily obtainable.

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Queen of the Dead Forest(Short Story)

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     The entire forest floor was covered by dried up brown and yellow leaves. They created their own patterns of swirls and other unique shapes all over the forest floor. The only sounds that whispered into the air was the light wind and the small animals who dared to move throughout the forest. Squirrels scurried all over the forest floor, trying to make it back to their homes in the trees. But they kept getting sidetracked by finding more nuts that kept falling onto the ground. The elk slowly moved between the trees. Cautiously looking around, trying to see any sign of life that might be lurking. Suddenly, the elk stopped right in his tracks. The sound of light footsteps start to fill the now empty air of the forest, and begin to get closer to where the elk stood.
Frozen still, the elk watched the woman come into view and he watched her every move.

     She took a few more steps, and was now in full view for the elk to see her fully. She didn’t see the elk that was frozen still on her right side, because he was partially hidden by an enormous tree that took up a good amount of space. She stood there for a moment, and then begin to lift her hands and arms up to the sky. As she lifted her chin towards the sky, her eyes closed and her mouth opened just slightly to let the fresh air fill her mouth with the sweetness of the autumn air. To her, it felt like it could rain any moment. This excited her, for the rain would cloak her and keep her hidden for tonight.

    After a few moments of standing like this, she began to speak, “Daluet norai teres.” She said those the words three more times. As she said the sentence one final time, she opened her eyes and noticed the dead leaves forming into a small tornado around her, and started to lift her off the ground and into the air.

    The elk still stood there, watching the woman being lifted into the air by the swirling dead leaves. His eyes widen more, as if he was terrified by what was happening in front of him. He didn’t dare move at this point, for he didn’t know what would become of him if he were to disturb this process that the women was going through. And he definitely didn’t want to know what she would do to him,  especially if she was capable of creating a swirling vortex of leaves.

       The tornado of leaves picked up its speed, swirling around her body and transforming her. Suddenly, the tornado slowly lowered her down and all of the swirling leaves came to a halt and fell to forest floor. There, on the ground, she laid. Her eyes were closed and her body in the fetal position. Then her eyes opened up.

     The elk watched the young woman get onto her knees and raise herself to her feet. She looked different now. She once had beautiful blonde curly hair, but now she had black and red curly hair. Before, she wore a steampunk vest with black skinny jeans and a pair of  boots. Now she wore a long black dress that hugged her curves perfectly. Her once manicured nails were now like long daggers jutting out of fingers. On top of her curly head of hair laid a black crown. Her new look made her look more fierce. It would make others quiver with fear when they saw her.

   The elk was terrified, he still stood in the same spot. Even as the rain began to fall, he stood there. Suddenly, she looked at the elk and smiled. She knew that he was there the entire time!
The rain began to pour down and she began to walk into the rain. Suddenly, the rain cloaked her. The rain had made her disappear into thin air, whisking her off to let her destroy anything that came across her path.