March Book Haul

It’s Friday in my world – may not be when you read this post – but today was pay day! It’s also fish fry night, pay all the bills night, pay rent, and buy all the books night.

I’ve been good with my purchasing power, but lately I just wanna splurge on all the things I’ve wanted for a while. Example: I bought a new Lodge enameled cooking pot for the kitchen, and I began prepping my living room for its first fresh coat of paint in over five years. Things are happening in this writer’s household!

This weekend I added a few more things to my TBR pile. Might as well, right? Especially since all the things “adulting” are taken care of for the month!

I may be working a 12-hour shift on a Friday (resulting in another missed fish fry), but that won’t stop me from buying my next round of books. I always try to include a healthy mix of fiction and nonfiction. Did I succeed? Here’s my book haul for the month of March.

House of Shadows by Darcy Coates

Publisher: Black Owl Books
Pub Date: 15 October 2015
Length: 294 pages

Sophie’s world is shattered when disaster bankrupts her family. She’s still reeling when she’s offered an unexpected solution: Mr. Argenton, a wealthy stranger, has asked for her hand in marriage. Marrying Mr. Argenton will save her family, but it condemns Sophie to a life in Northwood, a vast and unnaturally dark mansion situated hours from civilization.

Still, she has no choice but accept the offer and hope the darkness won’t swallow her whole.

It’s a struggle to adjust to her new position as mistress over the desolate house. Mr. Argenton’s relatives are cold, and Mr. Argenton himself is keeping secrets. Even worse, the house is more than it seems. Doors slam. Inhuman figures slink through the surrounding forest. A piano plays itself in the middle of the night. Blood drips a macabre warning down the walls. Day by day, Sophie is inevitably pulled towards the terrifying truth at the heart of this gothic mystery: Northwood’s ancient halls are haunted, and the man she married―the man she’s coming to love―is hiding an unforgiveable truth about his ancestral home…and the spirits that now haunt them both.

This particular story might be darker than I’m used to, but I did recently enjoy HIS DARK KISS, so who knows? HIS DARK KISS is a Gothic romance that was definitely a bit out of my wheelhouse in terms of genres I typically read. However, I do love a good supernatural tale. Is this also kind of a thriller? I guess I’ll find out!

The House on Tradd Street by Karen White

Publisher: Berkley
Pub Date: 16 October 2008
Length: 352 pages

Practical Melanie Middleton hates to admit she can see ghosts. But she’s going to have to accept it. An old man she recently met has died, leaving her his historic Tradd Street home, complete with housekeeper, dog—and a family of ghosts anxious to tell her their secrets.

Enter Jack Trenholm, a gorgeous writer obsessed with unsolved mysteries. He has reason to believe that diamonds from the Confederate Treasury are hidden in the house. So he turns the charm on with Melanie, only to discover he’s the smitten one…

It turns out Jack’s search has caught the attention of a malevolent ghost. Now, Jack and Melanie must unravel a mystery of passion, heartbreak—and even murder.

I am always on the hunt for something new. This series intrigued me, but I’d found the third book instead of the first. And I couldn’t justify starting anywhere in the middle. This was the first book to arrive from my book buying spree that Friday afternoon, and even though it’s a worn copy, I appreciate that I don’t have to break in a new cover at all. Looking forward to reading a new-to-me author.

Widow’s Walk by Wendy Webb

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Pub Date: 26 February 2020
Length: 226 pages

Escaping a troubled marriage, Annie Cameron brings her autistic son Charlie and mother-in-law to Mico Island. With the friendship of Winston Mann and his wife, their new home becomes a sanctuary. Until the dreams start.

Years ago the Manns’ son mysteriously drowned. Winston thinks the woman who once lived in Annie’s house caused his death. Except she’s been dead for two hundred years.

Charlie and his mentally fragile grandmother sense a malevolent presence in the house. But they don’t know how to fight back as Annie slowly becomes possessed.

Now Annie has discovered the door to the widow’s walk and the house’s dangerous past. A storm is brewing. Someone waits to finish what was started long ago. And Annie will keep a promise she never made.

WIDOW’S WALK is the third story on this list to take place in a house, and I rather like the idea of her books having darker themes. While I have read THE HAUNTING OF BRYNN WILDER, and want to read both THE STROKE OF WINTER and THE END OF TEMPERANCE DARE, I wasn’t too thrilled with the Brynn Wilder story. The story felt slow, then wrapped up way too quickly. But I’m willing to give another story of hers a try. WIDOW’S WALK it is!

The Orphan of Cemetery Hill by Hester Fox

Publisher: Graydon House
Pub Date: 15 September 2020
Length: 311 pages

Boston, 1844. Tabby has a peculiar gift: she can communicate with the recently departed. It makes her special, but it also makes her dangerous.

As an orphaned child, she fled with her sister, Alice, from their charlatan aunt Bellefonte, who wanted only to exploit Tabby’s gift so she could profit from the recent craze for seances.

Now a young woman and tragically separated from Alice, Tabby works with her adopted father, Eli, the kind caretaker of a large Boston cemetery. When a series of macabre grave robberies begins to plague the city, Tabby is ensnared in a deadly plot by the perpetrators, known only as the “Resurrection Men.” In the end, Tabby’s gift will either save both her and the cemetery—or bring about her own destruction.

And now we’ve reached a story that does not mainly take place in a house. Well, that’s what I’m assuming based on the book’s title! This story does carry on the somewhat gothic theme of this month’s book haul. How that happened, I have no idea. Every once in a while we all go through book phases, right?

Guide to Literary Agents: 30th Edition

Publisher: Writer’s Digest Books
Pub Date: 14 December 2021
Length: 320 pages

No matter what you’re writing–fiction or nonfiction, books for adults or children–you need a literary agent to get the best book deal possible from a traditional publisher. Guide to Literary Agents 30th edition is your go-to resource for finding that literary agent and earning a contract from a reputable publisher. Along with listing information for more than 1,000 agents who represent writers and their books, the 30th edition of GLA includes:

  • Hundreds of updated listings for literary agents and writing conferences
  • Informative articles on crafting effective queries, synopses, and book proposals (and the agent query tracker)
  • Plus, a 30-Day Platform Challenge to help writers build their writing platforms
  • Includes 20 literary agents actively seeking writers and their writing

It’s kind of funny to me how many of today’s purchases feature a house. And I know I may be jumping the gun with the last one, but I prefer having a physical resource on hand rather than getting lost in the Internet-verse when the time does come. I’ve got loads of overtime coming my way at work in the coming weeks, so I don’t know when I’ll be able to get my TBR pile under control. (Yes, I know I haven’t posted a review in a while)! Here’s to hoping I can crack open a book in the coming days!

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Budding #historian. Writer of #adventures and #sciencefantasy. Lover of mushrooms and libraries. Fan of #chocolate, #books and Pennsylvania history.

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