Category: Award Winners


Categories: Award Winners

2011 Horror Reading List Winner

The Reference and User Services Association (RUSA) announced the winners of its annual Reading List awards in several categories, including science fiction, for books published last year.


The Dead Path by Stephen M. Irwin

Summary: Guilt ridden Nicholas Close retreats to his family home in Australia after the tragic death of his wife, only to encounter an ancient malevolence lurking in the nearby woods. Childhood nightmares and fairytale motifs combine in this emotionally powerful tale of implacable evil. Arachnophobes beware!


It by Stephen King

Summary: A promise made twenty-eight years ago calls seven adults to reunite in Derry, Maine, where as teenagers they battled an evil creature that preyed on the city's children. Unsure that their Losers Club had vanquished the creature all those years ago, the seven had vowed to return to Derry if IT should ever reappear. Now, children are being murdered again and their repressed memories of that summer return as they prepare to do battle with the monster lurking in Derry's sewers once more.

Faerie Tale: A Novel of Terror and Fantasy by Raymond Feist

Summary: The town records have it listed as Erl King Hill, 'Hill of the Elf King'. To the locals it is known simply as the old Kessler Place. A great ramshackle house, it stands among deep woods, full of memories and myth. There are strange stories about the old place: talk of haunted woods, strange lights that dance like fire, buried treasure and lost children, now long forgotten. But for the Hastings Family, Gloria and Philip, and their eight-year-old twins, Sean and Patrick, and Philip's teenage daughter, Gabrielle, it is the stuff of dreams.

Dark Hollow by Brian Keene

Summary: After two miscarriages, writer Adam Senft's marriage is on the rocks, and his only satisfaction comes from his bond with his dog, Big Steve. One day, on a walk through local woods rumored to be haunted, man and dog come across a strange sight: a woman performing fellatio on a statue of a satyr—which comes to life and sees them. Soon, all the women in town begin disappearing, summoned to the woods by the satyr's hypnotic piping. When Adam gathers the menfolk to hunt down the satyr and retrieve the women, what they uncover is an unholy evil bent on protecting itself and spreading its seed.


Categories: Websites, Award Winners

2011 Black Quill Award Winners

Just discovered the Dark Scribe Magazine, a virtual magazine dedicated to the terrific books that keep readers up at night. Tons of great stuff but the most impressive feature is that the fact that they just announced their 4th Annual Black Quill Awards, which honors the best in dark genre (horror, suspense, and thrillers).

Here are the winners:


EDITOR'S CHOICE: A Dark Matter by Peter Straub

Summary: The charismatic and cunning Spenser Mallon is a campus guru in the 1960s, attracting the devotion and demanding sexual favors of his young acolytes. After he invites his most fervent followers to attend a secret ritual in a local meadow, the only thing that remains is a gruesomely dismembered body—and the shattered souls of all who were present. Years later, one man attempts to understand what happened to his wife and to his friends by writing a book about this horrible night, and it’s through this process that they begin to examine the unspeakable events that have bound them in ways they cannot fathom and find themselves face-to-face with the evil triggered so many years earlier.


READER'S CHOICE: Sparrow Rock by Nate Kenyon

Summary: Six high school students have survived nuclear war in a high-tech bomb shelter, but they-re not alone. Mutated insects are hungry and the human survivors are the only prey.


EDITOR'S CHOICE: Haunted Legends edited by Ellen Datlow and Nick Mamatas

Summary: Darkly thrilling, these twenty new ghost stories have all the chills and power of traditional ghost stories, but each tale is a unique retelling of an urban legend from the world over.


EDITOR'S CHOICE: Occultation by Laird Barron

Summary: Pitting ordinary men and women against a carnivorous, chaotic cosmos, Occultation's eight tales of terror (two never before published) include the Theodore Sturgeon and Shirley Jackson Award-nominated story "The Forest" and Shirley Jackson Award nominee "The Lagerstatte." Featuring an introduction by Michael Shea, Occultation brings more of the spine-chillingly sublime cosmic horror Laird Barron's fans have come to expect.

For a complete list of winners, click on this link.


Categories: Award Winners

2009 Shirley Jackson Award Winner for Best Horror Novel

The 2009 Shirley Jackson Awards winners were announced on Sunday, July 11th 2010, at Readercon 21, Conference on Imaginative Literature, in Burlington, Massachusetts. The award honours outstanding achievement in the literature of psychological suspense, horror, and the dark fantastic.

The winner for best horror novel was:

Big Machine by Victor LaValle

Summary: Ricky Rice was as good as invisible: a middling hustler, recovering dope fiend, and traumatized suicide cult survivor running out the string of his life as a porter at a bus depot in Utica, New York. Until one day a letter appears, summoning him to the frozen woods of Vermont. There, Ricky is inducted into a band of paranormal investigators comprised of former addicts and petty criminals, all of whom had at some point in their wasted lives heard The Voice: a mysterious murmur on the wind, a disembodied shout, or a whisper in an empty room that may or may not be from God.

Evoking the disorienting wonder of writers like Haruki Murakami and Kevin Brockmeier, but driven by Victor LaValle’s perfectly pitched comic sensibility Big Machine is a mind-rattling literary adventure about sex, race, and the eternal struggle between faith and doubt.


Categories: Award Winners

RUSA's Best Horror Books of 2010

Several months ago, the Reference and User Services Association (RUSA) announced the winners of its annual Reading List awards in several categories, including horror.

Last Days by Brian Evenson

TITLE CURRENTLY UNAVAILABLE. Please request through Interlibrary Loan.

Summary: This is a down-the-rabbit-hole detective novel set in an underground religious cult. The story follows Kline, a brutally dismembered detective forcibly recruited to solve a murder inside the cult. As Kline becomes more deeply involved with the group, he begins to realize the stakes are higher than he previously thought. Attempting to find his way through a maze of lies, threats, and misinformation, Kline discovers that his survival depends on an act of sheer will.


Pilo Family Circus by Will Elliott

Summary: “You have two days to pass your audition. You better pass it, feller. You’re joining the circus. Ain’t that the best news you ever got?” Delivered by a trio of psychotic clowns, this ultimatum plunges Jamie into the horrific alternate universe that is the centuries-old Pilo Family Circus, a borderline world between Hell and Earth from which humankind’s greatest tragedies have been perpetrated. Yet in this place—peopled by the gruesome, grotesque, and monstrous—where violence and savagery are the norm, Jamie finds that his worst enemy is himself. When he applies the white face paint, he is transformed into JJ, the most vicious clown of all. And JJ wants Jamie dead!

Misery by Stephen King

Summary: After a car crash, writer Paul Sheldon is saved by his number one fan. She brought him home, splinted his mangled legs, and all he had to do in return was write a very special book, one all about her favourite character. Because if he didn't, if he was bad, she would be cross - very cross.

Crash by J. G. Ballard

Summary: In this hallucinatory novel, the car provides the hellish tableau in which Vaughan, a "TV scientist" turned "nightmare angel of the highways," experiments with erotic atrocities among auto crash victims, each more sinister than the last. James Ballard, his friend and fellow obsessive, tells the story of this twisted visionary as he careens rapidly toward his own demise in an intentionally orchestrated car crash with Elizabeth Taylor.

Short List:

The House of Lost Souls by F.G. Cottam

Summary: The Fischer House was the scene of a vicious crime in the 1920s - a crime which still resonates as the century turns. At its heart was a beautiful, enigmatic woman called Pandora Gibson-Hoare, a photographer of genius whose only legacy is a handful of photographs and the clues to a mystery. Paul Seaton was lured to the house ten years ago and escaped, a damaged man. Now three students will die unless he dares to go back. But this time he has Nick Mason at his side, and maybe Mason's military skills and visceral courage will be enough.

The Séance by John Harwood

Summary: This crisply written mystery is told in several sections, from three alternating points of view. Constance Langton, a young woman living in London in 1889, opens the narrative with a first-person description of how she came to be involved in the world of ‘spiritualists’ and séances, in an effort to help her mother who has never got over the death of Constance’s baby sister years before. We then go back in time almost 20 years, to hear the narrative of John Montague, which details the mysterious goings on at the utterly sinister-sounding Wraxford Hall—the site of several unsolved deaths. By the time we reach the narrative of Eleanor Unwin, whose seeming psychic abilities threaten to destroy her life, we begin to have an inkling of how these first two stories are linked.

The Unseen by Alexandra Sokoloff

Summary: After experiencing a bad breakup and some disturbing dreams, a young psychology professor from California decides to get a fresh start by taking a job at Duke University. She soon becomes obsessed with the files from the world-famous Rhine parapsychology lab experiments, which attempted to prove if ESP really exists. Along with a handsome professor, she uncovers disturbing cases, including one about a house supposedly haunted by a poltergeist, investigated by another research team in 1965. Unaware that the entire original team ended up insane or dead, the two professors and two exceptionally gifted Duke students move into the grand, abandoned haunted house to replicate the investigation, with horrifying results.

The Little Stranger by Sara Waters

Summary: Follows the strange adventures of Dr. Faraday, the son of a maid who has built a life of quiet respectability as a country doctor. One dusty postwar summer in his home of rural Warwickshire, he is called to a patient at Hundreds Hall. Home to the Ayres family for more than two centuries, the Georgian house, once grand and handsome, is now in decline - its masonry crumbling, its gardens choked with weeds, the clock in its stable yard permanently fixed at twenty to nine. But are the Ayreses haunted by something more ominous than a dying way of life? Little does Dr. Faraday know how closely, and how terrifyingly, their story is about to become entwined with his.


Categories: Award Winners

2009 Bram Stoker Award Winners

The 2009 Bram Stoker Awards were handed out last week. Presented annually by the Horror Writer's Association, the Stokers honor "superior achievement" in the horror genre. Here is the short-list of this year's winners:

Superior Achievement in a Novel:

Audrey's Door by Sarah Langan

Summary: Built on the Upper West Side, the elegant Breviary claims a regal history. But despite 14B's astonishingly low rental price, the recent tragedy within its walls has frightened away all potential tenants . . . except for Audrey Lucas. No stranger to tragedy at thirty-two—a survivor of a fatherless childhood and a mother's hopeless dementia— Audrey is obsessively determined to make her own way in a city that often strangles the weak. But is it something otherworldly or Audrey's own increasing instability that's to blame for the dark visions that haunt her . . . and for the voice that demands that she build a door? A door it would be true madness to open . . .

Superior Achievement in a First Novel:

Damnable by Hank Schwaeble

Summary: After being disgraced and wrongly imprisoned, special military operative Jake Hatcher finds himself standing watch against an unimaginable threat to humanity. For he's about to discover that the streets of New York City have become a secret battleground between forces he cannot comprehend.

For a complete list of the winners, click on this link.


Scream Awards 2009 ... and the winners are ...

Check out all the nominees and winners here!

Honoring the Best in Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Comics and Horror

Best Horror Movie:

1) Dead Snow

2) Drag Me to Hell WINNER!

3) Friday the 13th (remake)

4) Let the Right One In (Sweden)

5) My Bloody Valentine 3D

6) Splinter

Best Foreign Movie:

1) Dead Snow (Norway)

2) Eden Lake (England)

3) Let the Right One In (Sweden) WINNER!

4) Martyrs (France)

5) Pontypool (Canada)

6) Timecrimes (Spain)

My thoughts:
2009 was a pretty ho-hum affair in Hollywood, including way too many sequels (Saw 6, The Final Destination, H2, Grudge 3) and poorly rendered re-makes -- Last House on the Left, Friday the 13th, My Bloody Valentine) -- just to name a few.

Outside of Hollywood however, some really great films were made, and I can't think of a year when so many stellar horror flicks were released. Sam Raimi's triumphant return to horror was the best thing to happen in Hollywood, but if you want to see some harrowing horror that's original, beautiful and traumatizing, check out the nominations above, especially Eden Lake and Let the Right One In.

The Cryptkeeper


Shirley Jackson Awards announced

The 2008 Shirley Jackson Awards were announced on Sunday, July 12th 2009, at Readercon 20, Conference on Imaginative Literature, in Burlington, Massachusetts.

Click here for a complete list of winners and nominees.


The Shadow Year

by Jeffrey Ford

Product Description: On New York's Long Island, in the unpredictable decade of the 1960s, a young boy spends much of his free time in the basement of his family's modest home, where he and his brother, Jim, have created Botch Town, a detailed cardboard replica of their community, complete with figurines representing friends and neighbors. Their little sister, Mary, smokes cigarettes, speaks in other voices, inhabits alternate personas ... and, unbeknownst to her siblings, moves around the inanimate clay residents. There is a strangeness in the air as disappearances, deaths, spectral sightings, and the arrival of a sinister man in a long white car mark this unforgettable shadow year. But strangest of all is the inescapable fact that all these troubling occurrences directly cor-respond to the changes little Mary has made to the miniature town in their basement.

Properly creepy, but from time to time deliciously funny and heart-breakingly poignant, too. For those of you—and you know who you are—who think the indispensable element for good genre fiction is good writing, this is not to be missed. -- Kirkus Reviews, Starred

Think Ray Bradbury’s Green Town stories, Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird and Stephen King’s The Body (made into the film Stand by Me) and you get an idea of the tone of Ford’s latest fine work. Grade: A -- Rocky Mountain News



Categories: Award Winners

2008 Bram Stoker Awards

The winners of the 2008 Bram Stoker Awards were announced at a banquet a couple of weeks ago during the Stoker Award Weekend at the Burbank Marriott Hotel, near Los Angeles.

Best Novel:

Duma Key by Stephen King

Summary: A terrible construction site accident takes Edgar Freemantle's right arm and scrambles his memory and his mind, leaving him with little but rage as he begins the ordeal of rehabilitation. A marriage that produced two lovely daughters suddenly ends, and Edgar begins to wish he hadn't survived the injuries that could have killed him. He wants out. His psychologist, Dr. Kamen, suggests a "geographic cure," a new life distant from the Twin Cities and the building business Edgar grew from scratch. Hence, Edgar leaves Minnesota for a rented house on Duma Key, a stunningly beautiful, eerily undeveloped splinter of the Florida coast. Now Edgar paints, sometimes feverishly, his exploding talent both a wonder and a weapon. Many of his paintings have a power that cannot be controlled...

For more information about the other award winners and the award, check out their website


2008 World Horror Award Winner

The International Horror Guild Awards, which recognize outstanding achievements in the field of horror and dark fantasy, were announced last month on Halloween.

The winner of the best novel was Dan Simmons' The Terror. The novel tells the story of Captain Francis Crozier and the men of the ill-fated 1845 Franklin Expedition who fight to survive frigid temperatures, tainted food, a dwindling coal supply, and an unseen predator stalking their ship.


Banned Books Week Sept 27 - Oct 4, 2008

RPL is celebrating Banned Books Week and you can join in the fight against censorship by reading a banned book!

The 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books of 1990–1999

Top 100 Banned/Challenged Books in 2000-2007

Check out this list of banned books posted on

Find these banned/challenged books in the RPL catalogue:

American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis

Animal Farm by George Orwell

The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison

Carrie by Stephen King

The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier

Cujo by Stephen King

Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak

Forever by Judy Blume

The Giver by Lois Lowry

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

Lady Chatterley's Lover by D.H. Lawrence

Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Naked Lunch by William S. Burroughs

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

The Satanic Verses by Salman Rushdie

Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut

To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller

Ulysses by James Joyce

Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe

The Witches by Roald Dahl

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