anthology, book review, fiction, multiple reviews, product review

Celebrate Halloween with Chronicle Books (Halloween-Themed Game & Anthology Review)

Halloween is coming! And since it’s one of my favourite holidays (if not my number one favourite), I thought that I would shade and review a game and book created by Chronicle Books (sent to me by Raincoast Books) which I think are spooktacular and quite perfect for preparing for, and celebrating, Halloween!

Name: Vampyre Hearts: A Trick-Taking Game
Creator: Forrest-Pruzan Creative
Format: Games
Publication: October 2018
ISBN: 9781452168418

This game was kindly provided by Raincoast Books, in exchange for an honest review.

Raise the stakes on the classic game of Hearts in a bone-chilling twist to the trick-taking card game! With the Queen of Vampyres hiding amongst your number, her thirst for Hearts may send everyone to an early grave. Can you strike her down before time runs out? Housed in a gorgeous coffin-shaped box, this set includes a deck of unique illustrated playing cards and rules for standard Hearts play as well as expanded rules and a token for a vampyric variation that adds hidden roles and ulterior motives to the fast-paced classic. Prepare for a thrilling and bloodthirsty game night for new players and experts alike!

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Title: Ghostly Tales
Creator: Chronicle Books
Illustrator: Bill Bragg
Type: Fiction
Genre: Horror, Short Stories, Classics
Publisher: Chronicle Books
Distributed by: Raincoast Books
Date published: July 25, 2017

A physical copy of this book was kindly provided by Raincoast Books, in exchange for an honest review.

A vengeful phantom lurks in a country graveyard.
A whaling crew becomes trapped on a haunted ship.
A human skull is kept locked in a cupboard, but
sometimes at night, it screams. . . .

This collection of tales transports the reader to a time when staircases creaked in old manor houses, and a candle could be blown out by a gust of wind, or by a passing ghost. Penned by some of the greatest Victorian novelists and masters of the ghost story genre, each story is illustrated with exquisitely eerie artwork in this special gift edition featuring an embossed textured case and a ribbon marker.

Oh, Whistle, and I’ll Come to You, My Lad – M.R. James
The Old Nurse’s Story – Elizabeth Gaskell
The Signalman – Charles Dickens
The Body-Snatcher – Robert Louis Stevenson
The Captain of the Pole-Star – Arthur Conan Doyle
The Phantom Coach – Amelia B. Edwards
The Screaming Skull – Francis Marion Crawford

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– Vampyre Hearts –

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I was drawn to this game because of the shape of the box as well as the illustrations on the exterior of the box (there’s a garlic illustration below the read heart, and I love it)! I had also never come across a vampire-themed card game / deck of cards before, and was very intrigued. Before opening the box, I figured that the cards would be styled like the coffin-shaped box, and would be quite neat. But what I found inside surpassed my expectations quite a bit! The hearts, spades, diamonds, and clubs were all specifically designed for this card game, and each face card has a unique illustration of (what I’m assuming) is a vampire. They’re all different, and I definitely have some favourites. All in all, I’m quite impressed and cannot wait to play this game with my friends!

– Ghostly Tales –

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The cover of Ghostly Tales looks absolutely fantastic, and definitely screams Victorian horror to me! For those of you who don’t know, I like both horror and the Victorian era, so this book was basically made for me. The beauty of this book’s design also continues into the interior of the anthology, with the end paper being designed to look like a Victorian wallpaper with parts of human skeletons snuck in. When I dove deeper into Ghostly Tales, I found that each short story begins with its own unique full colour illustration related to what it contains. This book also comes with an attached black silk bookmark, and I just love how it’s designed, inside and out. As for the stories themselves, I had read works by Elizabeth Gaskell, Charles Dickens, and Arthur Conan Doyle before, and loved their writing in this book. I was also happy to be introduced to some Victorian writers who I either had not read before now, or had not even heard of! All in all, this book is just beautiful (especially if you’re into the Victorian + horror like me), and is just an amazing reading choice for this time of the year!


13 thoughts on “Celebrate Halloween with Chronicle Books (Halloween-Themed Game & Anthology Review)

  1. That game sounds so cool! I need to find some people to play games with or games that can be played with two players. lol Our game group is very tiny, family small. I can’t wait until the kid is old enough to play games.

    I’m not sure I’ve got Halloween books really set up. I’ve got some monster-y type books, like The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein, to read. I want to get to The Girl in the Well.

    1. Doesn’t it?! I can’t wait to play it! And I hope that you’ll get to check it out and play it 🙂

      And oooo those both sounds creepy and dark! I’ll be reading the Elizabeth Frankenstein one very soon!

        1. I picked it up the other day and couldn’t put it down until I’d read like 20 pages in one go, haha. To explain, that’s rare for me because I get VERY easily distracted! Haha. I’m excited to read more. It’s a bit slow right now, but I’m sure it’ll pick up 😀 I’m so glad that you really enjoyed it!

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