Moonlight Murder

Moonlight Murder

Welcome to the Fourth Annual game of Halloween bingo! This is the time of year to read horror and mystery, scary books with gothic themes and other dark fiction.

Favorite past bingo squares

This game has been a creative exercise for me and OB since the beginning, when we first brainstormed the idea on twitter instant messaging in 2016! I have had a blast every year trying to come up with a few, or sometimes more than a few, new ideas for squares. These are some of my favorites:

 

  

 

These were new categories for the 2018 bingo game, and I still really like all three of them. There's a lot of room for creative interpretation to all of them.

 

  

 

I love books set in London, which just lends itself to supernatural and mystery fiction, and I have a huge weakness for anything gothic, especially old fashioned gothic romance. I always love whatever I pick for these squares. And I think that the Baker Street Irregulars square is just cute, the nod to Sherlock Holmes makes me smile, and I enjoy YA mystery a lot.

 

 

And, I know that this post is really just for past bingo squares, but I have to say that I am over the moon delighted with this new one for this year! It's my favorite of the new nine, although I am pretty excited about all of them!

 

New Space #8

 

 

Paint it Black: Any book with a cover that has a lot black or has the word black on the cover, in the title, author or as a character name, or involves rock and roll in some way. 

New Space #7

 

This one is fairly obvious and is a twist on the "Terrifying Women" of years past - the only question is what does "international" mean? Basically, it means international to you - the reader. I'm in the U.S., so "international" means women mystery authors from Europe, South America, Asia, etc...

Halloween Bingo Pre-Party: Favorite Authors
Endless Night - Agatha Christie Greygallows - Barbara Michaels Snowfire - Phyllis A. Whitney Scorpia Rising - Anthony Horowitz

The most obvious choice for me is, of course, Dame Agatha! Her books have been featured significantly in my prior games :

 

Mystery on the Blue Train for Terrifying Women

The Thirteen Problems for 13

Hickory Dickory Dock for Terrifying Women

Endless Night for In a Dark, Dark Woods

The Moving Finger for Terror in a Small Town

Hallowe'en Party for Pumpkin

 

However, other authors who showed up a lot in my prior bingo games include both Barbara Michaels and Phyllis Whitney, who write old-fashioned gothic romance:

 

Ammie, Come Home by Barbara Michaels for Reads with Booklikes Friends

The Walker in the Shadows by Barbara Michaels for Fear the Drowning Deep

Houses of Stone by Barbara Michaels for Gothic

Grey Gallows by Barbara Michaels for Haunted House

The Lost Island by Phyllis Whitney for Terror in a Small Town

Snowfire by Phyllis Whitney for Gothic

Listen for the Whisperer by Phyllis Whitney for Gothic

Columbella by Phyllis Whitney for Romantic Suspense

 

Last year, Anthony Horowitz was my wild card author - I was on a road trip during a chunk of September, and we listened to 4 Alex Rider books on the trip!

 

Links to my old bingo update posts:

 

Halloween Bingo updates 2016

Halloween Bingo updates 2017

Halloween Bingo updates 2018

 

New Space #6

 

Psychological thrillers, plot twists and suspense, unreliable narrators and other mind-fuckery. And, as an aside, any Halloween Bingo book that takes place within or related to an insane asylum, haunted or otherwise, would qualify!

Halloween Bingo Pre-Party: second group of prompts!

Since we are coming to the end of the first round of pre-party prompts, I thought I'd better get the second round up and ready!

 

Booklikes-opoly 2019: coming to the end!

The game is officially scheduled to end Saturday, but I am calling my game over once I finish The Winter Mantle, hopefully today. I am currently much more interested in making book plans and piles for Halloween bingo!

 

I can't even apologize for derailing the end of the game with my excitement over Halloween bingo - my favorite game of the year - but I won't make the mistake of planning to extend a game into August again!

 

Halloween Bingo Pre-Party: Favorite Seasonal Covers

I've missed a few days, so I'll loop back and a write some posts for those as well. But this one is a pretty easy lift, so here goes!

 

Hallowe'en Party - Agatha Christie 

 

This one has made an appearance in several prior posts, but I can't resist adding it here, too, because it's basically perfect.

 

Wicked Autumn - G.M. Malliet  The Haunted Season: A Max Tudor Mystery (A Max Tudor Novel) - G. M. Malliet  

 

I love the covers from this series of cozy mysteries, and the two autumn/Halloween installments are delightful.

 

 

The Fall - Bethany Griffin  

 

I basically bought this book for the cover alone, and I still haven't read it. 

 

The Replacement - Brenna Yovanoff  Anna Dressed in Blood - Kendare Blake  

 

YA has some great fall/gothic/Halloween-ish covers. I love both of these, with their pops of red. I've read The Replacement, by Brenna Yovanoff, which would be a great Halloween bingo read, but I haven't read Anna Dressed in Blood.

 

Just looking at these covers makes me ready for fall!

New space #5

 

Any mystery, suspense, supernatural or horror that takes place at a school - high school, college, boarding school, etc.

New Space #4

You get two new spaces today - I've been having chromebook issues at home over the weekend!

 

 

Non-fiction that has elements of suspense, horror or mystery, including true crime, both contemporary and historical. Examples would be The Suspicions of Mr. Whicher by Kate Summerscale, In Cold Blood by Truman Capote, or The Amityville Horror by Jay Anson. If you have another idea, run it by me - just remember that it has to fit into the general Halloween Bingo criteria of mystery, suspense, horror or supernatural!

New Space #3

 

This is a multi-genre square! Any book that relates to a dystopian society, such as The Handmaid's Tale or The Hunger Games, would qualify! 

Quilt Preview

I'm not going to share full pictures until the quilt gets to Char, but I thought it would be fun to give you a preview!

 

 

It's not quite done, and the colors aren't quite right in the photo, but it's close and will be in the mail by the end of next week!

New Space #2

 

This is a horror square! You can read anything written by Stephen King or Joe Hill, or recommended by Stephen King (as long as the recommendation is otherwise eligible for Halloween Bingo). 

 

I found links to lists of his recommended books on Book RiotSimon and Schuster, and on twitter.

Halloween Bingo Pre-Party: Vampires, Werewolves, Zombies or other?
Glass Houses - Rachel Caine Vampire Academy - Richelle Mead Hotel Transylvania - Chelsea Quinn Yarbro Anno Dracula  - Kim Newman World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War - Max Brooks The Girl with All the Gifts - M.R. Carey

This is a tough one for me, since I have, at various times, enjoyed each of them, but, also, each of these tropes became oversaturated at some point or another! If I had to choose, right now, I would choose werewolf by elimination, because I overdosed on vampires and I never really liked zombies, although there a couple of zombie books I liked a lot.

 

I was never a fan of Twilight. My YA vampire romance catnip were the Morganville Vampires and Vampire Academy - those were the ones that my daughter read, and that I read along with her. Oh, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer, on television, of course.

 

Now that I've put some distance between myself and far too much sexy vampire fiction, there are a few series that I'm interested in again, though! The Chelsea Quinn Yarbro St. Germaine series has been recommended by several of my friends here - including Linda Hilton, whose bookish taste is impeccable. The first book, Hotel Transylvania, is on my list of possibles for this years game of Halloween Bingo, unless someone who knows the series recommends a different starting point! I also have a copy of Anno Dracula on my kindle that has been there for years, and that looks like something I would love!

 

Moving on to zombies, they just didn't appeal to me. Sexy vampires are silly, but there is nothing sexy about a zombie. On the other hand, World War Z is worth reading, and The Girl With All the Gifts is excellent, with a great ending. Too many authors blow the ending, and Carey nailed it.

 

There are exactly zero is one possible zombie books that I am sufficiently interested in to plan to read for Halloween bingo at this point, although I'll keep my eyes on the posts for something that might interest me. No, wait, there's Feed by Mira Grant. I might read that one!

 

So, that brings me to werewolves, which brings me to urban fantasy. Urban fantasy is replete with shifters of all sorts, and I pretty much lump werewolves with shifters. My favorite shifter has to be Mercy Thompson, who is actually a skin walker (shifts into coyote form), not a werewolf. I read the hell out of Mercy Thompson and keep meaning to do a reread! And I can't mention shifters without pointing to Kate Daniels, which may be the actual best UF series ever written. 

 

 

New Space #1

 

The idea for this new space comes courtesy of Linda Hilton!

 

Generally, in order to qualify for Halloween bingo, all books must fit into one of the general genres of horror, mystery, suspense or supernatural. This space is filled by any Halloween bingo book that has been adapted to film or television.

 

For extra fun, you can watch the adaptation - although this is an opitonal add on!

Halloween Bingo Is Back

 

And it's bigger and better than ever!

 

There are a few game changes that I'll reveal here, so that everyone can start getting ready!

 

First, we are bringing back the old AND revealing some new! Because this year, there will be daily bingo calls, and while the cards will still have 25 spaces (with one free space), there are a total of 61, yes SIXTY-ONE, possible spaces, so we will be calling a space each and every day.

 

There are 9 new spaces, in addition to the 52 recycled spaces. I am going to reveal the 9 new spaces over the next 9 days, with the first one to follow this post, to give ample opportunity for coming up with book ideas.

 

Once I reveal the 9 new spaces, I'll give you the full list of spaces - the others will be familiar to you if you've played the last 3 years. Some of them have been tweaked a bit, but they are generally spaces we've used in the past.

 

I have also generally divided the possible spaces into 4 focus sub-categories: horror, mystery/suspense, supernatural, and multi-genre.

 

Because there are so many spaces to work with, it's going to be too difficult for me to avoid specific spaces. Instead, when you request your card, tell me which sub-categories you want to focus on and I will weight your card from those groupings. If you don't care, and just want a random selection, tell me that, and I will oblige.

 

Because I am not letting you opt out of specific spaces this time around, I am introducing a new twist. Also, I just like to introduce new twists.

 

You might remember that I gave everyone a wild card author last year? Well, we're not doing that this year. Instead, I am giving everyone three opportunities to use a transfiguration spell:

 

 

 

This way, if you end up with a space or two or even three that just doesn't work for you, just whip out your metaphorical wand and turn it into something else! No repeat categories, though, obviously. You can transfigure your spaces one at a time, at any time, up to 3 spaces.

 

That's all for now. 

currently reading

Progress: 40%
The Lake House: A Novel - Kate Morton
London - Edward Rutherfurd