New To The Queue

New things to read, watch, listen to

New To the Queue is a semi-monthly thing around here wherein I give you a tiny glimpse into some of the books, movies, tv shows and bands I’ve recently added to my never ending queue of things to read/watch/listen to. For past posts, go here!

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24 Halloween/Fall Must-Reads

halloween reads for people who like scary and people who don't like scary books

There is just something about Fall that makes me pick up very specific books. I mean, sure, I will read just about any book at any time but I *am* a person who reads based upon their mood and sometimes the weather or the seasons will affect that.

All during the Fall I find myself craving mysteries, horror, murder-y type books, thrillers, supernatural, Gothic lit, dark and atmospheric or just anything that has a real ~Fall vibe~…..don’t ask me to define what that is for you…it’s just a FEELING that I get.

So, I figured I’d put together a list of a list of books perfect for your Fall/Halloween reading needs — whether you like scary books or prefer less scary and more mystery or atmospheric. Some of the books I’ve read and some are on MY must read list for this Fall!

Grab a PSL, get cozy in a sweater and head to your nearest bookstore or library to snag one of these! (Also, check out these Halloween reads  and these ones I recommended through the years).

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30 Things About The First Year Of My 30’s

I celebrated my 31st birthday this past Saturday which was a blast — 3 out of my 5 ladyfriends have birthdays within days of each other (no literally the 11th, 15th and 16th) so the other two planned an awesome birthday celebration for the 3 of us and all of our husbands. I had such a great time.

I was feeling rather reflect-y of how this time last year I was FREAKING OUT about turning 30 (idk it felt like a really big deal to me) so I thought it would be fun to talk about all that happened in my first year of being 30 and all the things I’ve learned this year — because it was a pretty extraordinary year!


1. Year 30 was the best year I’ve had in a long time!! I love that I irrationally feared it but it honestly was one of the BEST YEARS IN A LONG TIME.

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What I’ve Been Reading Lately

book recommendations and books to read


Well hellooo there.  Haven’t talked about what I’ve been reading lately as I’ve been a little MIA considering September was quite the doozy of a month.  I don’t even know if I remember how to write posts these days lol.

Here’s some of what I’ve been reading lately (and I really want to hear what you guys have been reading lately because I’m SOOOO out of the loop):




Wild by Cheryl Strayed


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The Girl On The Train Movie Giveaway


I told you last week I had another book-to-movie related giveaway coming your way and here it is! The Girl on the Train has been a popular thriller everyone’s been reading and the movie is out NOW! (If you are curious what other book to movies are coming out soon check out my 24 Books To Read Before The Movie Comes Out In 2016 & 2017 post).


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Monthly Rewind: September 2016


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Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children Book & Movie Giveaway

As you may know from my 24 Books To Read Before The Movie Comes Out In 2016 & 2017 post, I am ridiculously excited for this movie adaptation. I LOVED Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs and I’m really excited to see how this book will be translated on the big screen. Plus TIM BURTON IS A PART OF THIS (I typically love his stuff).

miss peregrines movie poster

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Do Your Reading Habits Fluctuate By Season?

I had mentioned here and there on the blog, over this course of this summer, how I was barely reading because I was just doing so many other things — which is 10000% fine with me. But I was thinking about it and realize I have certain patterns when it comes to my reading habits.

I realized I read WAY LESS during the summer which is interesting because I always used to have this notion that I read MORE in the summer — ALL THE SUMMER READING.  I’ve found this to be less true lately. 

pool reading


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Q&A With David Arnold, Author of Mosquitoland & Kids of Appetite



I’m so, so delighted to have David Arnold on the blog again (you can check out our first chat here). I loved his debut novel Mosquitoland and recently devoured (in the midst of a major reading rut) his latest Kids of Appetite which I cannot wait to write about in more detail. It was FANTASTIC truly. I fell in love with this group of characters and totally was engaged by the structure of the novel and how things unfolded.

So, grab a cuppa something and get to know David Arnold a bit more as we talk about his book Kids of Appetite, music and more!



1. If books used pick-up lines when readers stood by the shelves trying to choose which book to pick up, what would Kids of Appetite’s pick-up line be?

I imagine KOA trying to woo readers with a song, something like Marvin Gaye’s Let’s Get it On.

2. I always love knowing the spark (a character’s voice, seeing something in the news, a line of dialogue) that led to the writing of a book. What was the spark of inspiration that produced Kids of Appetite?

I’d recently finished rereading S.E. Hinton’s The Outsiders, and I adore the band Arcade Fire, and I realized that the feeling I got while reading that book was similar to the feeling I got when listening to that band. If you’ve never heard Arcade Fire perform, it feels like at any minute they might hurl their instruments into the audience then run down the street for an ice cream cone, and The Outsiders captures this same sort of youthful recklessness. I wanted to try and write a book from that place.


3. One of my favorite things ever in books/tv shows/movies are ragtag groups of misfits who maybe wouldn’t otherwise become friends and I fell in LOVE with the group of individuals that made up the Kids of Appetite. Tell me one or two of your favorite bands of misfits from another novel/show/movie.

Well, The Outsiders is one of those, obviously. Off the top of my head, two others would be Wes Anderson’s Moonrise Kingdom and Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go.

4. I loved the idea behind the Super Racehorse that comes out throughout the novel. What does the idea of “Super Racehorse” mean to you and 1) tell us someone in your life who you think is a Super Racehorse and 2) someone maybe in the public eye whom you don’t know but exudes the qualities of a Super Racehorse.

Well, you can be a Super Racehorse on a micro level (say you fix the garbage disposal, or you ace a test), but you can also be one on a macro level, which is a lot harder to define. I dedicated KOA to both of my grandfathers, who passed in the last few years, and I think for me, they’re the ultimate Super Racehorses. As far as someone in the public eye who I don’t know, but who exudes the qualities of a Super Racehorse, I’m going with Mindy Kaling.

5. I’ve loved watching your career blossom from when you were awaiting your debut novel, Mosquitoland, being published and now as Kids of Appetite is on the verge of being out in the world. What is the biggest lesson you think you’ve learned along the way?

Enjoy the process. Enjoy the people. Do your work, and don’t get hung up on what other people are doing or getting. Just be you—in person, and on the page.

6. I always love imagining who characters I love would be friends with from different books! Tell me another character from any book that you think Vic and Mad (individually) would be friends with and why.

This is a shipping question, isn’t it? It’s a shipping question in disguise. I’m old, Jamie. I barely understand the concept, but I will try: I think maybe Vic would like to be friends with Theo Decker (as a kid) from The Goldfinch. They could talk art and family, and I think they have similar philosophies on a few things. And I think Mad would be friends with Cassie O’Malley from Kerry Kletter’s The First Time She Drowned.

7. One of the things I loved about Mad was her unadulterated passion for The Outsiders and her Hinton Vortex theory — what’s that one book for you?

When I was in middle school, I just read Jurassic Park over and over again until the cover literally fell off. Other books I reread are J.D. Salinger’s Glass family novellas, Harry Potter, and The Lord of the Rings.

8. I always love the little tidbits of music (especially the Elliott Smith) in your books and I loved that both Vic and Mad had favorite songs that were really did mean a lot to them. SO, what is your all time favorite song AND a current favorite song that you’ve been playing on repeat a lot lately?

If I had to pick one all time favorite song, I guess it would have to be Jeff Buckley’s rendition of Hallelujah (written by Leonard Cohen). Or Debussy’s Clair de lune. Or maybe Elliott Smith’s Speed Trials. (Sorry! I gave you three.) As far as what I’m listening to now, it’s been a lot of The Antler’s Familiars and Daughter’s Not to Disappear. Oh, and I recently got Sufjan Steven’s 10th Anniversary Blue Marvel Edition of Illinois on vinyl, so I’ve been rediscovering that too.




Kids of Appetite

Victor Benucci and Madeline Falco have a story to tell.
It begins with the death of Vic’s father.
It ends with the murder of Mad’s uncle.
The Hackensack Police Department would very much like to hear it.
But in order to tell their story, Vic and Mad must focus on all the chapters in between.

This is a story about:

1. A coded mission to scatter ashes across New Jersey.
2. The momentous nature of the Palisades in winter.
3. One dormant submarine.
4. Two songs about flowers.
5. Being cool in the traditional sense.
6. Sunsets & ice cream & orchards & graveyards.
7. Simultaneous extreme opposites.
8. A narrow escape from a war-torn country.
9. A story collector.
10. How to listen to someone who does not talk.
11. Falling in love with a painting.
12. Falling in love with a song.
13. Falling in love.

Stalking Jack the Ripper Giveaway

In the Fall I am obsessed with picking reads that just have that FALL feeling (here are some of my recs) and since the first day of Fall was yesterday I’ve already started to pick what books I’m going to read to get me in the ~mood~ for Fall — especially because here in Philly it was like 80 yesterday (I’m so not complaining but man I want to bust out my boots and flannel so hard) so I need ALL the help I can get to think of Fall because my brain is still in summer mode.

One of the books FOR SURE on my list, like on my nightstand, is Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco which just came out this week! I mean, JACK THE RIPPER + Victorian era + a highborn lady who is super into forensics trying to track him down. I’ve heard rave reviews from fellow book friends and I’m super excited to dive into it!

Stalking Jack the Ripper

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