For Halloween lovers and haters


Another month, another series of books for the Mary Sue Book Club! Although second to September in my opinion (for the reasons I laid out last time), great October because it’s both officially-officially fall. and the start of a scary season. For that reason, we’ve made sure to include seasonally themed choices that range from gruesome murders to campy paranormal romances. Also included, on the mark, is an Ethiopian retelling of Charlotte Brontë’s classic Jane eyre.

If you’re one of the few who doesn’t find the silliness or terror involved in Halloween fun, fear not … there’s a newly translated graphic novel about a mom bear and cubs, a Chinese fantasy YA, and more here just for you.

Team by Maggie Tokuda-Hall and Lisa Sterle

Four people face with werewolves and full moon in the background.  (Image: Greenwillow Books.)

(Image: Greenwillow Books.)

This paranormal romance / thriller (graphic novel) follows a new transfer student, Becca, after being taken under the wing of the popular girls at her elite new school. She is surprised and then intrigued when she finds out that the clique is made up of werewolves who specifically prey on boys who take advantage of girls. What she sees as justice becomes less and less clear as time goes on. To further complicate matters, Becca realizes that she is in love with another member of the pack.

Team releases October 5.

My Monticello: Fiction by Lana Harper

Drawing of the Monitcello estate.  (Image: Henry Holt & Company.)

(Image: Henry Holt & Company.)

Comprised of six very different tales of people fleeing a white supremacist militia in Charlottesville, this book explores shared stories and a complicated legacy, all in the house of (IMO) the worst, the most hypocritical historic plantation of the founding father. This book, along with other works by Harper, has received rave reviews from literary icons like Roxane Gay.

My Monticello releases October 5.

GREEDY: Notes from a bisexual who wants too much by Jen Winston

Typography / title read "Greedy: Notes From A Bisexual Who Wants Too Much" book cover.  (Image: Atria Books.)

(Image: Atria Books.)

This collection of essays offers a comedic introspection on the author’s experience with sexism, biphobia and self-esteem. After a bisexual celebration (out or out) for Bisexual Awareness Week, it’s always good to delve deeper into the real stories that make these claims so important.

GREEDY: Notes from a bisexual who wants too much releases October 5.

OK yes by Mari Ahokoivu and translated by Silja-Maaria Aronpuro

Watercolor of a bear as the cover of the book.  (Image: Levine Querido.)

(Image: Levine Querido.)

Originally published in 2018 in Finnish, this newly translated graphic novel mixed science fiction, fantasy and Finnish mythology. The story follows a mother bear protecting her children and adopted creature, as the deities of heaven watch over them. A glance at these lush and moving illustrations, made us very excited to read this book.

OK yes released on October 12.

Gold Fire Jade by June CL Tan

Two warriors with swords back to back.  (Image: Harperteen.)

(Image: Harperteen.)

When two lost souls cross paths, they each see themselves as a tool to reclaim the past and regain control of their future. Altan pursues his inherited throne, and Ahn aims to understand his magical powers and learn more about his lost family. This dark fantasy pays homage to the xianxia novels from the early 1900s.

Gold Fire Jade releases October 12.

Flowers for the sea by Zin E. Rocklyn

The cover of the book depicts a woman pulled by tentacles.  (Image: Tordotcom.)

(Image: Tordotcom.)

Among the survivors sung in the ark is pregnant and ostracized Iraxi. Like the others on the boat, she escaped the now inundated kingdom from which they came. While the monsters beyond the boat and the depletion of resources are of great concern, Iraxi is also concerned that her new child might not be fully human. The disturbing gothic and dystopian novel is perfect for fans of horror and / or sci-fi.

Flowers for the sea releases October 19.

In these wicked walls by Lauren Blackwood

Black woman with two braids in front of an aged turquoise wallpaper.  (Image: Wednesday books.)

(Image: Wednesday books.)

Described as an ‘Ethiopian inspired fantasy tale of Jane eyreThe paranormal fantasy novel follows an exorcist, Andromeda, hired to clean the spaces of the evil eye. Desperate to develop a clientele to hire her even without a license, Andromeda begins working for the demanding and wealthy Magnus Rochester (who lives in a mansion in the middle of the desert). Despite the rise of paranormal activity and deadly secrets, she begins to fall in love with Magnus.

In these wicked walls releases October 19.

She’s killing me: the real stories of the deadliest women in history by Jennifer Wright

Book cover for "She kills me" featuring women in the doorway with a KNIFE.  (Image: Abrams Image.)

(Image: Abrams Image.)

Perfect for fans of real crime and thrillers, She kills me shares 40 stories of women who have committed homicide. Some did it out of fear and self-defense, while others took life for revenge and pleasure. Either way, the role of women in the murders is under-discussed, as we are often seen as the victims and not the perpetrators of the violence. This non-fiction book is not for the faint of heart. After you finish that, maybe check out his 2017 book Get well soon: the worst plagues in history and the heroes who fought them

She kills me releases October 26.

(Image shown: Tordotcom, Greenwillow Books and Atria Books.)

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