What’s Up Buttercup • November Edition

What's Up, Buttercup?
What’s Up Buttercup is an overview of the past, present and future here on Words in a Teacup, posted around the middle of the month.

 

What's Been Going On:

  • WE MET ON NOVEMBER 1ST SO WE COULD GO AND SEE WELCOME TO NIGHT VALE IN HAMBURG AND IT WAS AMAZING (both the meeting and WTNV). We have photographic evidence too:

    There would’ve already been a post about it but some people on this blog are lazy butts.

  • Ren made a list of Top Ten new series she wants to start. We’ll see how that goes for her!
  • November’s Pick-For-Me is in full swing and while Isa’s not even midway through one of her picks, Ren has already finished one of hers! (Way to go, Ren, especially after you so steadfastly ignored the last couple of PFMs.)
  • Ren also made a list of her Top Ten books she wants to re-read. It goes without saying that Know Not Why (you should all read that, btw, it’s awfully cute and fluffy) and Harry Potter made the list. They’re both all-time favourites of ours.
  • The following week, we banded together and both contributed to the Top Ten Tuesday post! There are so many characters we wish would get their own books, it’s a miracle that we even like the books that they are only secondary characters in. Can you guess who wrote about which characters, though?
  • In blog-unrelated news, Isa is almost through her probation period (two more weeks!!! I can do this!!) of her apprenticeship. She’s also fallen into a pit of Fleetwood Mac and can’t get out. (You haven’t had a religious experience yet unless you’ve seen Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham be awfully cozy together post-breakup. And look at that cute dancing… I might be suffering from emotions due to this. Similarly, seeing them perform Rhiannon is like watching an exorcism and it’s amazing. 10/10 would recommend on-stage exorcisms if they include Stevie Nicks.)

 

Recently Reviewed

The Scandalous Sisterhood of Prickwillow Place by Julie Berry The Jade Temptress by Jeannie Lin Reunited by Hilary Weisman Graham The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley The Circus of the Damned by Cornelia Grey Bloodline by Jordan L. Hawk Black Dog by Cat Grant The Heiresses by Sara Shepard Also Known As by Robin Benway Precious Metals by L.A. Witt Horrorstör by Grady Hendrix

 

 

Coming Up Soon:

Upcoming Reviews
I Shall Wear Midnight (Discworld #38) by Terry Pratchett Waistcoats & Weaponry (Finishing School #3) by Gail Carriger Moon Called (Mercy Thompson #1) by Patricia Briggs

That’s it for this month, buttercups. What’s going on with you? Feel free to share in the comments, we’d love to hear from you!
Isa and Ren

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[Ren] Horrorstör by Grady Hendrix

Horrorstör by Grady HendrixReview copy badgeAvengers vs X-Men badgeTitle: Horrorstör
Author: Grady Hendrix
Published: September 23rd, 2014
Rating: 4 out of 5 teacups
Find it at: amazongoodreads

This is a horror story with a cover that looks like an Ikea catalog. I don’t know about you but that caught my attention right away. I’m not usually a fan of horror because I’m a scaredy cat, but sometimes it’s nice to read outside my usual genres. As such I don’t know if this story is original or if it’s full of tropes, I only know that I enjoyed it a lot.

The story is set in the Orsk store which (even the characters admit) is an Ikea knockoff. Someone has been vandalizing the store, so some employees decide to spend the night patrolling the show to catch the culprits in the act. This is obviously a Very Bad Idea because the vandals are not human.

I’ll leave it at that, because part of the fun for me was not knowing just what exactly was wrong with the store — was it ghosts? monsters? a curse? — and I liked the shift from normal slice-of-life account of a day in the life of an Orsk employee to the really creepy stuff going on at night. It helped that I read this book as I was travelling to visit Isa: if you’re alone on a train before dawn you can really appreciate the creepiness of usually crowded spaces when they’re empty and silent.

As for the characters, the story is told from the POV of Amy and I really like her. She avoids most of the usual pitfalls, such as suggesting to split up, and I was really rooting for her. I also rather liked Basil, and the Big Bad is suitably creepy. Some of the characters left me indifferent though, and there was at least one death when I thought, oh well, one less character to keep track of.

There is death, and creepy things, and bloody gory bits that I really hope I won’t dream about at night. Like I said, I’m squeamish. And then the chapter headers that look like pages from an Ikea catalog make a really jarring counterpoint. For me, it works really well.

Again, horror is not my genre so I couldn’t predict the ending at all. I really liked it though, it solves the plot but leaves a couple of things open-ended so I can wonder what’ll happen next. (Not in a baiting-for-sequel wait though, just… I can imagine those characters living on after the end of the book. And I always like it when an author does that.)

I haven’t been converted to horror and I doubt I’ll read other similar books in the future, but I think Horrorstör is an experiment that works and I’d happily recommend it to anyone, though if you’re like me you might feel tempted to keep the lights on at night afterwards.
Ren