Sally's Staff Picks

Sally Woods at Murder By The Book since 2011

I read a bit of everything, so I've tried to include both old and new favorites. That said, my favorite genre is dystopian. Though,sometimes I think I read too much of it as I can get obsessed. Two of my favs are in this stack. ( I had to stop watching The Walking Dead when I started becoming too aware of my surroundings and looking for escape routes.)

Other favorite authors are Kevin Brockmeier, whose writing makes me happy, and Marianne Wiggins whose Evidence of Things Unseen is possibly my favorite book of all time.

Mystery wise, Tana French has a wonderful Irish series. I always look forward to anything by Laura Lippman and Megan Abbott. I'm trying to catch up on women crime writers from the 40's and 50's, the collection here is incredible. David Joy. His writing will stop you in your tracks with its beauty.

Sally's 2020 Top 10:

In no particular in order

The Invisible Life of Addie Larue by V.E. Schwab
And Now She's Gone by Rachel Howell Hall
Catherine House by Elizabeth Thomas
The Last Flight by Julie Clark
I See You So Close by M Dressler
If It Bleeds by Stephen King
Firewatching by Russ Thomas
The End of October by Lawrence Wright
Survivor Song by Paul Tremblay
The Two Mrs Carlyles by Suzanne Rindell

Bonus Fun Book!
Behind the Horror: True Stories that Inspired Horror Movies by Lee Mellor


Check out Sally's Recommendations Playlist on the MBTB YouTube channel.

Staff Pick Badge
Chasing the Boogeyman: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781982175160
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Gallery Books - August 17th, 2021

Chizmar will be a familiar name to some of you.   He is the publisher of Cemetery Dance magazine and the owner of Cemetery Dance Publications.

Chasing the Boogeyman is an absolutely fascinating and creepy read. It's a novel written as non-fiction true crime book. 

Richard plays himself in the book and a recent graduate returning to his hometown to get his writing career started.  Young girls are starting to disappear. The rumors are rampant about who or what is responsible.

As one girl after another go missing and the bodies are discovered, Richard decides to write about what is happening.  Richard gets involved and it all starts to get personal. 

Chasing the Boogeyman is an amazing blend of horror, memoir and true crime. I had to constantly remind myself this is a novel. A simply excellent work of fiction. I loved it. - Sally

Staff Pick Badge
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, Special Edition Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250830746
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Tor Books - October 5th, 2021

What an amazing book!  

"Never pray to the gods that answer after dark."  Words best remembered. Adeline doesn't want to belong to anyone and because of a deal she makes with the devil, no one is able to remember her. For 300 years, she lives from moment to moment. Never recognized. Always forgotten. Until one day she meets a man who does remember her. How is this possible? 

A richly told story covering several timelines: starting in 1714, when Addie meets Luc, the god of darkness, to present day.

A wonderful and intricate book by one of the best in the fantasy world. - Sally

Staff Pick Badge
Billy Summers Cover Image
ISBN: 9781982173616
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Scribner - August 3rd, 2021

Stephen King's latest is a story about a professional hit-man who decides the job he has just taken will be his last.  It's time to retire. That's when things things start to go a bit awry.

But, as you might expect from King, there's no horror or supernatural elements in this story.  It's a straightforward crime novel about a man whose life has suddenly taken an unexpected turn or two or three.

I loved "Billy Summers".  Billy is simply a good guy trying to right some wrongs in an unconventional job.

Stephen King has written an outstanding story. It's excellent - one of his best.  There's a wonderful cast of characters, both good and bad.  You won't forget them or Billy Summers anytime soon.

Highest recommendation! (Do keep an eye out for easter eggs!) - Sally

Staff Pick Badge
The House in the Cerulean Sea Cover Image
ISBN: 9781250217318
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Tor Books - December 29th, 2020

A 2021 Alex Award winner!
The 2021 RUSA Reading List: Fantasy Winner!
An Indie Next Pick!
One of Publishers Weekly's "Most Anticipated Books of Spring 2020"
One of Book Riot’s “20 Must-Read Feel-Good Fantasies”

Rovers Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316541961
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Mulholland Books - July 27th, 2021

Two immortal brothers crisscross the American Southwest to elude a murderous biker gang and protect a young woman in this “utter triumph and delight” from award-winning author Richard Lange (Jonathan Ames, author of A Man Named Doll)

Summer, 1976. Jesse and his brother, Edgar, are on the road in search of victims.