For weeks and months at a time, my blog hosts the occasional post and then waits wearily for another dose of inspiration to follow it. Sometimes that inspiration comes. Sometimes it doesn’t. I spend so much time writing — columns for Thrive, columns for Flash Fiction Chronicles, freelance work and of course, my own novels and short stories — that my blog kinda just hangs out like a hot rod that only goes out for a spin now and then. And it’s not even hot.

As an aspiring fiction writer with a few novels under submission, it seemed like a wise plan to have an online presence — ergo, this blog. There was just one problem: I had/have nothing to say. (Well, that’s not completely true. I have things to say, but I usually use other avenues to say them — such as those listed above).

Meanwhile, outside of blog and writing life, I have happily fielded questions from fellow bookworms about what they should read next. If there’s anything I love more than writing, it’s books (which is still writing, but whateve). I read several books a week and always have one nearby just in case I have to wait for something, whether the wait is three minutes or thirty. For some reason it has only just occurred to me to unite my quiet blog with my excitable book recommendations.

So instead of telling you what NOT to read, I’m gonna tell you want you NEED to read, assuming you have a similar aesthetic as me. Just be warned: my aesthetic ranges from L. Ron Hubbard to Fyodor Dostoevsky.

So, take my recommendations for what you will — and if you’re one of those folks who has stroked my ego by asking for my ever-inspiring book recommendations, consider this your first one. And it’s a good one. Yes, indeed.

Every now and then I get really annoying about books that I like. For a while, it was The Underneath by Kathi Appelt. You couldn’t shut me up about The Underneath. Now I’m on a mission to spread the word about Miss Peregrine and her school of peculiar little orphans, one of whom you see levitating on the cover (didn’t notice that at first, didya?). This is the story of an awkward teenage kid who travels to a dreary out-of-the-way island to find out if his grandfather’s tall tales about invisible children, vicious monsters and fire-carrying girls are true or make-believe. The novel is interspersed with strange and eerie photos, giving it an element of spookiness and realism that few novels like this can accomplish. Get it. Trust me. If my well-woven words don’t convince you, then watch the trailer, which I have also been posting annoyingly on people’s walls:

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