The spooky season may have passed, but there are still opportunities to indulge in supernatural stories and ogling oddities to fill your year.

The Derby Public Library hosts three book clubs for library patrons, and Hauntingly Good Reads is the one with the peculiarities.

“We read a variety of books from paranormal to sci-fi and fantasy,” says Maycie Carman, Circulation Staff Member and book club facilitator. “Basically [we read] anything that is dark and twisty or has hint of some unknowable magic behind the scenes.”

Reading tends to be a solitary venture, but when cracking the spine on a chilling ghost story or a dense sci-fi, it can help to make the reading experience a collaborative effort.

Carman’s book club offers the chance to go beyond the words on the page and dive deeper into the story.

“Our club is really great at opening the meetings up to discussions. The answer to one question always seems to flow into another question for us to debate.”

Recently the club regaled themselves with a grandfather of Gothic literature, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving. In November, they traveled to planet Arrakis with Dune by Frank Herbert. December’s selection, The Heart-Shaped Box by Joe Hill, involves an aging rock star’s online purchase of a vengeful ghost.

Carman’s own reading tastes reflect the club’s theme, and she has big plans for 2022.

“I love reading a variety of stories from lighthearted to the dark and twisty but my favorites are fantasy books.” Two titles she is excited for next year’s meetings are Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix Harrow and The Saturday Night Ghost Club by Craig Davidson.

While Hauntingly Good Reads has been an established book club at the library for nearly nine years, the past few seasons have seen a decline in attendance. Carman hopes to bring a broader range of genres to the club and even a potential name change to reflect that shift.

“When Hauntingly Good Reads began they mostly read within the paranormal or horror genre so [it] was fitting, but we’ve expanded into sci-fi and fantasy books too. Maybe a rebranding would draw newcomers.”

No matter the name, this book club is sure to provide an excellent discussion on thrillers and chillers, and readers might discover a new favorite along the way.

Hauntingly Good Reads meets on the first Tuesday of every month at 7 p.m. in the Frank Fanning Room and invites all interested readers to attend.


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