Columns > Published on October 2nd, 2012

New This Month: October Reads

Every month I'll be toiling in the dank, dark mines of literary obscurity, scouring the catalogues of every major publisher to bring the LitReactor faithful a few choice titles hitting the shelves. The following is a brief look at what's worth checking out in October. Full disclosure: unless otherwise noted, none of the below books have been reviewed by myself or other LitReactor staff. These are just a few recommendations based on publisher's notes and my own opinions. Without further ado:

'Total Recall: My Unbelievably True Life Story' by Arnold Schwarzenegger 

October 1st

Okay, okay... everybody knows that celebrity autobiographies are made up of 50-75% ghostwriter copy, and are often self-serving, gloss over unflattering moments, and offer no real insight whatsoever, but... c'mon, it's AHNAALD! This one's worth a read for one reason above all others: reading it out loud in Schwarzenegger's voice. Oh man, has anybody been tapped for the audiobook version yet? Curiously, October seems to be the month for celebrity autobiographies: Peter Criss and Pete Townshend also have tell-all memoirs dropping.

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'This Book is Full of Spiders: Seriously Dude, Don't Touch It' by David Wong

October 2nd

Longtime editor and author of John Dies at the End David Wong has returned to fiction with this sequel, that finds protagonists David and John in the middle of a zombie apocalypse, that may or may not have been triggered by an advent of zombie books and movies, and that exists despite a notable lack of actual zombies. If you're not confused/intrigued yet, a shadowy cabal of shape-shifting terrors is also involved.

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'Blasphemy: New and Selected Stories' by Sherman Alexie

October 2nd

Native-American author Sherman Alexie has been writing compelling and unique fiction since 1996, most of it centering around his own experiences growing up on the Spokane reservation. Alexie shines light on one of America's most overlooked minority classes, and this collection of his work contains new stories written especially for this volume, as well as certifiable classics, such as 2003's incredible What You Pawn I Will Reedeem, which appeared in The New Yorker in 2003.

[amazon 0802120393 inline]


'Son' by Lois Lowry

October 2nd

One of three veteran writers releasing a long-anticipated novel this month, Lois Lowry drops her fourth entry into the same series that brought us The Giver, Gathering Blue, and Messenger. In this conclusion, Claire, a wandering soul who washes up on the shores of a distant land, only possess the memory that her former home had no feelings or colors... and that she had a son who was taken from her. As you can imagine, this doesn't sit too well with our protagonist, and her quest to find her child may have unthinkable consequences.

[amazon 0547887205 inline]


'Pirate Cinema' by Cory Doctorow

October 23rd

Trent McCauley is a brilliant sixteen-year-old who obsesses over making intricate mash-ups of recycled bits of old films downloaded from the Internet... essentailly a visual Girltalk. However, as in real life, this sort of behavior falls under the heading of "copyright infringement". Unlike the world we know, in Trent's native England, a third offense results in your entire household's access being cut off for one year. When this happens to Trent, he flees to London, and eventually falls in with a group of artists who are working on a collaborative project that may be mankind's only hope against a piece of looming legislation that could destroy artistic freedom as we know it.

[amazon 0765329085 inline]


'The Racketeer' by John Grisham

October 23rd

For fans of legal thrillers, the author of A Time To Kill is back with a new one for you. It begins with the untimely death of a judge, and is told from the perspective of an imprisoned, disbarred attorney, who just might know what happened to the poor guy in the black robes... for a price.

[amazon 0385535147 inline]


'Back to Blood' By Tom Wolfe

October 23rd

Recent work notwithstanding (can we all just pretend I Am Charlotte Simmons never happened?), Tom Wolfe is the master of an old dog who isn't giving up the hunt any time soon, and in his most recent novel, the man in the white suit is elbow-deep in the world of Miami Beach. The publisher's notes aren't heavy on plot, but rest assured that it involves a lot of crazy-goings on, corruption, and a full cast of characters, including a sex-addicted therapist, a cop, Haitian gangsters, a mayor, a police chief, and shady Russians.

[amazon 0316036315 inline]

Happy reading, everybody! As always, leave a few lines: do these sound interesting? Anything been overlooked? Picked up one of these titles and loved/hated it? Let us know!

About the author

John is a copy editor and contributing writer at LitReactor, and also does work for He holds a film degree from the University of Texas at Austin, and is currently hard at work on several as-yet unnamed projects.

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