recommendations

Spooky Film Recs 2021 — the Horror of Grief and Alienation

The final category of this year's horror collection is my favorite -- Grief and Alienation. For me, the most gut-wrenching horror is not about terror. It's about loss. My standard disclaimer: I prefer horror about people and relationships, with stories that emphasize...

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Spooky Film Recs 2021 — Survival Horror

This collection of films features protagonists with a strong will to live. The characters must dig deep and use their brains and brawn to negotiate the horror landscape. Ultimately, their stories are more about survival than transformation. A reminder: I prefer horror...

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Spooky Film Recs 2021 — Sci Fi Horror

'Tis the season for horror! Gather around, children -- today's offerings feature pandemics, ecological calamities, medical misdemeanors, and alien incursions. What fun! FULL DISCLOSURE: I crave horror about people and relationships, with stories that emphasize the...

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Spooky Reads for 2021

This year it's been far too easy to put a book down. Many of us have suffered from diminished attention span during the pandemic, of course, and accepting this has made it easier to let go of books that aren't working for me. Lately I've found it particularly...

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Green Man / Green Knight

I've seen The Green Knight. It's a dark film, often bizarre and at times inscrutable. You'll find little of the pageantry or romance we often associate with Arthurian films. You'll also find little in the way of schmaltz or Hollywood sparkle. This adaptation is gritty...

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The Right Writing Retreat

Writing is hard work, especially when you must squeeze it in alongside the daily commitments of employment, relationships, domestic engineering, childrearing and pet wrangling. Sometimes the only way to get anything done is to abandon these commitments altogether! If...

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June Tea and a Book — Timeless, by Moira Croghan

Timeless is a celebration of Mackinac Island and its cottage architecture. The book includes historical context and gorgeous exterior and interior design photography -- perfect for fine coffee tables everywhere! That said, I must also tell you that this post is much...

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April Tea and a Book: Eva Ibbotson

I first encountered Eva Ibbotson in the YA section of our local Borders bookstore in the early 2000s -- back when I was teaching high school English (and Borders still existed). I began with A Countess Below Stairs and so enjoyed this story of a Russian countess...

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February Tea and a Book: WWII Child Evacuee Stories

Recently I read When the War is Over, by Barbara Fox. This memoir of the author's mother, Gwenda Brady Gofton, focuses on her childhood years as a WWII evacuee in Cumbria. After a couple of false starts in other evacuation areas, Gwenda and her older brother Doug...

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December Tea and a Book: Calm Christmas

One of the few positive things about this terrible pandemic is that it's forced us all to spend more time with ourselves. In our own heads. Dreaming, reading, planning, growing. I'll confess that I love being alone. I inherited this trait from my mother, and many of...

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What to watch for Halloween

I just wrapped up this year's Spooky Film Recommendations, but there's more I wish to share. In case some of you are planning a bit of horror viewing over the weekend, I wanted to list my favorites from 11 years of blogging horror -- and I'm going to put the films in...

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Spooky Film Recs, part IV

Here we are with the final chapter of 2020's Spooky Film Recommendations. I intended these to be "ghost-free" horror, but a few ghosts wormed their way in despite my best efforts. The films are listed in the order that I viewed them. As always, all synopses are from...

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2020 Spooky Film Recs, Part III

Ah, my very favorite category of horror -- Ghosts and Hauntings! Strangely enough, I struggled to find good options this year. Had several false starts before I decided to share these five films with you. (All synopses from imdb.com) Doctor Sleep (2019) -- Rated R...

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2020 Spooky Film Recommendations, Part II

Each of the following films has been featured on one or more "Feminist Horror Film" lists. What does "Feminist Horror" even mean? I'm using the term for films featuring female protagonists with agency who don't need a man to rescue them or explain anything. For...

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