This month our guests for Shelf Edition are Audra and Ouija, or you may know them as @ouija.doodle.reads! Audra is an avid bookworm and editor who spends the rest of her free time watching horror movies and kickboxing, and Ouija is a goldendoodle with a nose for good fiction, haunted houses, and tennis balls.
Book title links will bring you to the book page at Goodreads.
Do you have any recent favorite LOHF books?
My favorite discovery of this year has been The Driver’s Seat by Muriel Spark. Though it isn’t a new book, it captured me so completely that when I finished reading it, I turned right back to the start and read it again. Chilling, suspenseful, and simply brilliant.
For the writerly readers, I’ll recommend this horror-adjacent read: Bunny by Mona Awad. Another darkly humorous book (I guess I’m going through a phase), this one delves deep into MFA writing programs and how the act of creation can be a type of black magic—literally.
What LOHF books do you have on your TBR?
I keep a pretty good stack of ladies of horror books stacked beside my bed so I can pick one up in between other reads. Kathe Koja and Bari Wood are giants I’ve yet to read, and they are staring me down. Cry Your Way Home is Damien Angelica Walters’s short story collection that I’ve been trying to get to, especially since I adored her story from the Fright into Flight collection. I’m also planning an end of summer re-read of all of Shirley Jackson’s books, and then I want to read Ruth Franklin’s mammoth biography of her I’ve been putting off!
Where do you find recommendations? Are there any LOHF books that have been recommended to you that you loved?
I have been developing a list of women horror writers for quite a while! Reading short story collections is a great way to find new authors. When I read a story I like in a collection, I check to see if that writer has any novels and I’ll add her to my list to keep an eye on.
Now, I definitely find most of my recs from social media, especially the LOHF team. I read The Between with the LOHF readalong in February and fell in love with Tananarive Due’s writing, so I’ve started collecting more of her books to read; The Good House is up next.
Where do you shop for books?
I love my local indie, Boulder Bookstore, for all new releases. Like most bookworms, I am magnetically attracted to all used bookstores—you just never know what kind of treasure you’re going to find! I recently chanced upon a hardcover first edition of Elizabeth Engstrom’s When Darkness Loves Us at the kookiest used store in New Orleans.
Are there any upcoming LOHF releases you’re excited about?
- Ania Ahlborn’s new release, If You See Her is sitting on my bedside table and I can hardly restrain myself from taking a peek before the LOHF readalong for July.
- Cherie Priest’s The Toll (Tor, July)—I haven’t read any of her books yet, but I’m impressed by her ability to cross genres: from steampunk to ghost stories, bring it on.
- Nicole Cushing’s A Sick Gray Laugh (Word Horde, August)—I can’t say that I “liked” her previous novel, but I definitely appreciated the gross, dark places it went.
- Katie Lowe’s The Furies (St. Martin’s, October)—an occult coming-of-age story for girls—that’s all I need to know.
- Lauren Beukes’s Motherland (Mulholland, May 2020)—I adored The Shining Girls and even though this one is pitched as noir/suspense/sci-fi (can’t wait to see how she pulls all that off) I’m keeping her on my horror ladies list.
Where can people find you on social media?
Thank you for joining us, Audra & Ouija! Our bookshelves also thank you! If you would like to be featured on a future shelf edition please leave a note in the comments. We’d love to see your shelves!