Weekly Update for October 31, 2021

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Weekly Update at Introverted Reader

Welcome to my weekly update for October 31, 2021!

Happy Halloween!

Are you and/or your kids dressing up? I love costumes but I’ll probably just stick with my “Boo!” shirt this year.

My husband and I spent an afternoon on Folly Beach this week. It was so nice to soak up the sun and listen to the waves while reading my book! The beach is my favorite place to read. Where’s yours?

I need opinions, please. I found out that there’s going to be a young adult book festival here in Charleston in a couple of weeks. Some authors I really like will be there (Grady Hendrix, Tahereh Mafi, Ransom Riggs, Kwame Mbalia, Margaret Stohl…) Organizers require everyone attending to show proof of vaccination or a negative covid test within so many days and wear masks so I would probably feel safe attending. But as an adult reader, would you attend a young adult book festival? Or would you let the teens have their time alone? I edged around one in Texas and had Jennifer Donnelly sign some books a couple of years ago but I felt too unsure to go to any panels. My husband will probably be at work so I’ll be on my own and I’m pretty timid. What’s the proper thing to do?


  • My sister dressed as Carmen Sandiego
  • Folly Beach
  • Folly Beach Park
  1. My sister and her dog dressed as Carmen Sandiego for a virtual Halloween office party. I was surprised by how serious Thor looked–for one picture anyway!
  2. Folly Beach County Park from the main park building
  3. A view over the Folly River from the park. If you look closely on the left, you can see the two white triangles of Charleston’s iconic Cooper River Bridge (Arthur Ravenel Bridge) in the distance.


The Final Girl Support Group by Grady Hendrix–4 Stars

The Necromancer’s House by Christopher Buehlman, read by Todd Haberkorn–2.5 Stars

Small Spaces and Dead Voices by Katherine Arden–4 Stars (Joint book review)


Hotel Oblivion (The Umbrella Academy #3) by Gerard Way and Gabriel Bá–3 Stars

World War Z by Max Brooks, read by a full cast–3 Stars

Dead Voices (Small Places #2) by Katherine Arden, read by Renee Dorian–4 Stars

The Power of Style: How Fashion and Beauty Are Being Used to Reclaim Cultures by Christian Allaire (Cybils Nomination)–4 Stars

Last Witnesses (Adapted for Young Adults) by Svetlana Alexievich, translated by Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky (Cybils Nomination)

Currently Reading:

The Hollow Places by T. Kingfisher

The Gathering (Shadow House #1) by Dan Poblocki, read by Dan Bittner

The Rebellious Life of Mrs. Rosa Parks (Young Readers’ Edition) by Jeanne Theoharis, adapted by Brandy Colbert and the author

Reading Challenge Update:

I’m including this in an effort to hold myself accountable. I’ll try to remember to update at the end of each month. Challenge title links go to my personal progress page and host links go to the relevant sign-up page.

Up Next:

I’ve been a little distracted by horror as Halloween has been approaching, but I’ll be buckling down to read more Cybils nominations. Luckily for me, my category overlaps nicely with Nonfiction November so I should get more focused than I have been. If you read nonfiction, I hope you’ll join Nonfiction November! Last year was the first year I participated. I had so much fun and added so many books to my TBR!

What did your week look like?

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz hosts The Sunday Salon and Kimberly at Caffeinated Book Reviewer hosts Sunday Post. Kathryn at Book Date hosts It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

Other Posts You May Enjoy:


  1. Definitely OK in my book for adults to attend the YA book festival! We adults go to children’s book festivals, right? There will be parents, teachers, librarians, etc. there with you, I would imagine. I’m always shy about speaking to the authors, too!

  2. I would say go for it and attend the festival! (It seems a lot of others agree, too.) If you feel awkward about it you can always let the teens have priority in panel seating or whatever, but you shouldn’t feel like you can’t go just because you’re not a teenager.

    How are you liking The Hollow Places? I enjoy T. Kingfisher’s work a lot, but I’m not sure if I’d be up to reading her horror books.

    1. I finished Hollow Places last night and thought of you. I know you love her non-horror books. I’m not sure exactly what it is about horror that you dislike, but I have a feeling you should probably avoid Hollow Places and The Twisted Ones. It started out funny and light-hearted but it got really creepy. Mostly it was just suspense of the kind seen in A Quiet Place, if you watched that movie. There wasn’t any real gore/slasher stuff, but there was definitely some very disturbing imagery of people caught in an inter-dimensional reality and it not going well for them. At all.

      1. Hmm. Thanks for the suggestions. I had been thinking that I should avoid her horror, but it’s good to have that confirmed. I can often handle suspense, but not as much when combined with body horror or graphic images. I guess I’ll just be happy that she’s writing both fantasy and horror, so that there’s still stuff of hers I can enjoy. 🙂

  3. I would love to go to a book festival, especially the one you mentioned. I’m a pretty introverted person as well, and I’ve been to several comic conventions and lamented the lack of things that interested me. This is something I would totally do, even if it’s just once.

    1. A good friend asked me to go to Walker Stalker Con several years ago, when we both still watched The Walking Dead. I’d been to several book festivals by then so I thought I knew what to expect. I was shocked by the amount of money I was expected to pay for every single little thing! I’m used to just showing up to a book festival, listening, maybe buying a book and getting it signed. No outrageous costs involved!

  4. I’d say do what your heart wants. Who says we can’t read YA at any age. While I am not big into it I do read it from time to time and enjoy it. The best books and authors are for any age. Sign of a good book. Well obviously not adult stuff for children but you know …

  5. I used to love to read at the beach (when we lived in San Diego), but it’s pretty chilly here in Oregon, so I’d have to say now my favorite spot is either in bed or stretched out on our couch in the RV.

    I would definitely go to the YA festival. Authors love large audiences and authors of YA books know that they have a big adult following, too. Sounds like fun to me!

    I’m getting ready to post my RIP wrap-up and I’m enjoying the nonfiction books that I started for Nonfiction November. I have a feeling my reading will grind to a halt toward the end of the month, though. We have a large family gathering for Thanksgiving and I’m in charge of most of the shopping & cooking. But, as I said, I love to read in bed, so maybe the holidays won’t interfere too much.

    Have a good week, Jen!

    1. My husband and I joked that the Oregon coast is the coldest, windiest place we’ve ever been! We’d walk out on the sand bundled up from head to foot with our teeth chattering and still find the occasional sun bather in a bathing suit though. They’re made of tougher stuff than we are! It surely is a beautiful place though.

      Thanks for the vote about the YA book festival!

      Good luck with the shopping and cooking! My husband’s work schedule only goes through the 13th of this month so we haven’t made any holiday plans yet.

  6. I would attend the YA festival, but probably hang out in the back of panels, etc so the teens had priority.

    You are doing so well on your challenges! I am starting to feel the pressure of the end of the year.

    1. Oh, hanging out in the back is a good idea.

      Good luck with your challenges! I only have a few books left but I’m running out of steam. I’m slowly reaching the conclusion that monthly challenges are not for me. ShelleyRae’s more open-ended style of the Nonfiction Challenge is much more my speed.

  7. The beach sounds wonderful right about now. And happy Halloween! Ours was last night sine they changed trick or treating to Saturday. We had a ton of kids!

    As for the book festival- I would say go. There’s such a wide range of YA now and so many adults read them. And let us know how it turns out 🙂

    I’ve been curious about the Arden books- I want to read those.

    1. Thanks for the YA book festival vote!

      I highly recommend everything I’ve read by Arden so far–The Winternight Trilogy, Small Space, and Dead Voices.

      We had candy and turned our light on but got 0 trick or treaters! We kind of expected it since we’re in a campground. Even families who went camping over the weekend were probably back home getting ready for school by trick-or-treat time. That just means more leftover candy for us!

  8. I’m all in for beach reading! We’ve been to Charleston a few times, but have never made it to Folly Beach. It looks beautiful!

    If you’re interested in attending the YA event, then I think you should go! I wouldn’t let not being a “young adult” stop you… there are YA readers of all ages.

    Nonfiction November is my favorite blogging event. I’ve already started reading from my NF stack. Happy to see Svetlana Alexievich’s work adapted for a younger audience. Happy Halloween.

    1. Folly Beach is gorgeous! We went back out for a walk there yesterday.

      I’ve been looking forward to Nonfiction November for a while now. I hadn’t heard of Alexievich until Last Witnesses was nominated for a Cybil award. It was certainly a powerful book.

  9. Of course you should go to the Book Festival! And tell us all about it. And you might get some goodies. Ooh yea.

    Gosh, you’ve read a lot lately. Good for you! I still need to read Katherine Arden. Will make a point of bumping her up on the TBR.

    Have a good week Jen and do go to the festival. Happy reading!

    Elza Reads

    1. I need to start reviewing more of what I read instead of spending quite so much time with my nose in a book! Oh well. I decided when I revived my blog that I wouldn’t pressure myself to post and I would just do what I felt like doing.

      I hope you enjoy Katherine Arden when/if you get around to reading some of her books! I think they’re fantastic.

  10. I think if you enjoy the author and the books, it is fine to go to the festival. We aren’t doing anything for Halloween this year. I am loving the fall weather though.

    Anne – Books of My Heart This is my Sunday Post

  11. I love to read at the beach, too. We have two nice beaches close to us. The photos of Folly Beach are great…it looks beautiful.

    Absolutely! You should definitely go to the young adult event. Who says young adult books are just for young adults? And who says what a young adult is anyway? Yes, go and share with us here!

    I’m eager to hear about your Cybils reads during Nonfiction November. Perfect timing.

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