The October Book Club welcomes you to real fall! (Unless you are here in Houston, then welcome to fall for a few days and then it will be hot an humid again and then it will be cold and rainy again and then it will be humid again and we repeat forever until it is summer). I am so excited for the promise of cooler weather. Something about it makes tucking in with a book so much sweeter! Don’t you agree?
In honor of the season, the October Book Club pick is definitely a little on the creepy side. The Dollhouse, by Sara Ennis, checks all the boxes for a cozy psychological thriller! Deranged mad man with family issues? Check. Creepy obsession? Check. Clever pursuit? Check.
After, you have your reading secure there are some great options for the entire family below. Be sure to peruse our family picks for October – there is something for everyone. Let’s read!
October Book Club Pick
Alfred needs Dolls. Blonde, blue-eyed human dolls that will help him rewrite his past and change his future.
When Peter Baden’s daughter Olivia was abducted nearly a year ago, he left his career as a respected journalist to find her. Now he spends his days searching for Olivia, and helping other families of abducted children survive the emotionally and physically exhausting experience of finding a missing child.
Twins Angel and Bud are used to making do. Their dad is in prison, and mom won’t win parenting awards. Bud thrives on neglect, but Angel isn’t so strong.
Now they’re captives in a place called the Dollhouse, and things have gone from bad to worse. The Dolls are forced to re-stage old photographs, but satisfying Alfred is not easy. He has a twisted sense of humor and a violent temper that explodes when things don’t go his way — and sometimes when they do.
Angel knows that if she and the other Dolls are to survive this warped playtime, she can no longer be needy and afraid. She must prove how strong she can be — fast.
There aren’t many photos left …
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You can read this book for free from archive.org.
Expressive text and art tell the story of the life cycle of trees as it has never been told before — in reverse. Here’s a lyrical depiction of the life cycle of trees, told one step at a time, based on newly researched information.
The steps are described in simple but evocative text, each starting with â€œBefore . . .â€ for a rhythmic telling. For example, â€œBefore we stood tall, we clothed ourselves in bark and crowned ourselves in leaves, waving eagerly at the sun.â€…
A joyful, universal story of a day in the life of Little Bird.
A heartening read-aloud about a day in the life of Little Bird, who sings the world alive, flies with Cloud, travels with Wind, nestles with Moon, and dreams of flying among the stars.
Sally Morganâ€™s poetic language and Johnny Warrkatja Malibirrâ€™s sensitive artwork combine to make this a beautiful, distinctive publication with global appeal. Printed on FSC-certified paper with vegetable inks.
Family Read Aloud
Our Read Aloud pick, The Trumpet of the Swan, is perfect for older to middle grade students. A sweet narrative about fitting in, adapting to challenges, and how music can fill your life with joy!
Like the rest of his family, Louis is a trumpeter swan. But unlike his four brothers and sisters, Louis can’t trumpet joyfully. In fact, he can’t even make a sound. And since he can’t trumpet his love, the beautiful swan Serena pays absolutely no attention to him.
Louis tries everything he can think of to win Serena’s affectionâ€”he even goes to school to learn to read and write. But nothing seems to work. Then his father steals him a real brass trumpet. Is a musical instrument the key to winning Louis his love?
Tween | Middle Grades
Our Tween/ Middle grades pick, The Hideaway, is a bit dark and definitely deals with some themes you may want to prescreen. However, it is wonderfully written and has enchanting graphic-novelesque black and white artwork throughout – which younger readers will love!
Told in two alternating narratives, The Hideaway tells the story of Billy McKenna, who runs away from home and takes refuge in an overgrown graveyard. The first narrative is told from his perspective, whereas the second thread tells of the situation at home and the police search for Billy.
Covering themes of domestic violence, families, childhood, and being separated and reunited, this is an important and beautifully illustrated book for middle grade readers right up to adults.
Our Young Adult picks are the completion of The Hazelwood trilogy by Melissa Albert. The first book in the series, The Hazelwood, is one of the best modern day fairytales we have had the pleasure of reading. These finale books are the perfect ending to an enchanting, gothic story.
In The Night Country, Alice Proserpine dives back into a menacing, mesmerizing world of dark fairy tales and hidden doors of The Hazel Wood. Follow her and Ellery Finch as they learn The Hazel Wood was just the beginning, and that worlds die not with a whimper, but a bang.
With Finchâ€™s help, Alice escaped the Hinterland and her reclusive grandmotherâ€™s dark legacy. Now she and the rest of the dregs of the fairy tale world have washed up in New York City, where Alice is trying to make a new, unmagical life. But something is stalking the Hinterlandâ€™s survivorsâ€”and she suspects their deaths may have a darker purpose. Meanwhile, in the winking out world of the Hinterland, Finch seeks his own adventure, andâ€”if he can find itâ€”a way back home…
Before The Hazel Wood, there was Althea Proserpineâ€™s Tales from the Hinterland…
Journey into the Hinterland, a brutal and beautiful world where a young woman spends a night with Death, brides are wed to a mysterious house in the trees, and an enchantress is killed twiceâ€•and still lives.
Which ones will you be reading this month?
Note: Many of our books were read courtesy of NetGalley ARCs. While this does give us a sneak peak all suggestions and opinions are our own – we have no obligation to provide positive reviews. We will never recommend books we would not read ourselves or share with our own family. Additionally, italicized descriptions are from the publisher. Throughout the month we are so excited to discuss our opinions on all these picks – please join us here, on our Bookstagram, and in our Facebook discussion group!