I think I have made my adoration for autumn rather apparent lately. I can’t help it since, at this time of year, I am in my element. I am more upbeat and content than usual. There is something in that autumn air, it adds a bit more pep to my step as the leaves crush under my feet.
So I guess it’s only natural that I developed two bookish traditions to do during my favourite season. One relatively new, only I have been doing for quite some time. So long, in fact, that I don’t remember exactly when I started doing it. I don’t just mean binge on horror novels, although I tend to do that too, but small personal things. I thought it would be a fun idea to share them with you.
For the past three years, I have been rereading one book in particular in October. The novel in question A Night in the Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny. What’s so special about this book? Well, it is an absolute acid trip in the best way possible. The story is written from the perspective of a guard dog named Snuff. A guard dog who works for Jack the Ripper. That isn’t even the weirdest part.
Snuff and Jack are players of “The Great Game”, and they are up against some rather familiar faces. To name a few, Sherlock Holmes, Rasputin and Doctor Frankenstein. Although they are often referred to as their titles such as “the great deteicive” and “the good doctor”. Each player has a familiar of their own, and they are our main characters since Snuff chats with them and often teams up with one, the cat Graymalk, familiar of Crazy Jill the Witch.
A Night in the Lonesome October is trippy, spooky and at times funny but always oddly charming.
The best part is each chapter takes place during one night in October. So, every night in October, I read that night’s corresponding chapter. My copy is only about 240 pages so it can be read in a day, but I think it’s fun to read a bit each night. It helps keep the spooky vibes going all month long.
Another tradition I’ve done for years is one my mum taught me. You see, as kids, my mum would tell us that the first falling leaf we caught was our “magic leaf”. Yeah, cheesy, I know, but it stuck. I may be a grown woman, but dammit, I still try to catch falling leaves when given half a chance. When I do manage to snatch that first leaf, these days I press it into whatever book I’m reading.
Funnily enough, what inspired me to share these bookish autumnal traditions was what happened yesterday. I caught my first leaf of the year! A small little yellow one this year, it all but fell in my hand. It almost felt magical, I was beaming for hours afterwards. It’s currently resting between the pages of my copy of The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Tales by H. P. Lovecraft.
I’ve been trying to come up with some more autumnal reading traditions, so if you have any of your own, please let me know!