From puppy pics to political news, Twitter is a wonderful place. It’s also home of a wave of flash fiction writers. Here are a few to follow to add some fiction to your feed, even when you don’t have time for short stories.
The absolute best Twitter flash fiction has to offer. Fantasy, mystery, and magical realism combined and intertwined in full stories under two-hundred-eighty words, with a philosophical bend that’ll make you contemplate the combination of genres.
This little bot may not know much, but it certainly has bizarre and whimsical grasp of mythological elements. At the risk of feeling like you’ve thrown a bunch of fantasy books in a blender, follow this bot for some strangeness on your feed.
For moody magical realism, look no further. Brief character sketches build strange and unlikely worlds, sci-fi flare, and elegant prose that are sure to have you excited for these stories on your feed.
Each week, Bookstr will be offering a look at some of the best novels in a particular genre for your continued reading list. Today, we’ll be recommending five recent young adult books for your reading pleasure. Young adult novels are generally written with a twelve to eighteen age bracket in mind but over half of the audience for YA novels are adults (as Bookstr readers can attest!) Young adult novels are often just as sophisticated as their adult contemporaries, often exploring themes self exploration, coming-of-age, relationships, trauma and love. Below, are some of our favorite recently published YA must-reads!
5. THe Haunted by Danielle Vega
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The Hauntedis a spooky new novel filled to the brim with ghosts. A teenage girl named Hendricks moves to the small town of Drearfield. Hendricks wants to a start a new life, trying to forget her dark and traumatic past, but things don’t work out as planned. She learns from her new friends about the notorious Steele House, a dark house, said to be haunted. And then, Hendricks ends up moving into Steele House with her parents. Here, she finds herself dealing with, whispers in the night, doors that lock on their own, and frightening apparitions that torment her with her own memories. Hendricks now has to grapple with the hauntings and take down the ghosts, if they don’t get her first!
4. Dealing in Dreams by Lilliam Rivera
Image via Amazon
Dealing In Dreamsis a dystopian thriller following a young woman called Nalah, leader of a gang of girls who roam the fierce streets of Mega City. Nalah, however, wants more out life than violent showdowns with the other gangs that prowl the streets at night. She wants a life in the esteemed Mega Towers, where only the elite get to go. To prove herself, Nalah must journey beyond the bounds of the city in search of a mysterious gang. As she journeys, she encounters peril, both outward and within, and begins to lose sight of everything she cares about as she grows closer to her goal.
3. Let me Hear a Rhyme by Tiffany D. Jackson
Image Via Amazon
On the streets of Brooklyn in 1998, hot on the heels of the murder of Biggie Smalls, another musically talented kid, Steph is murdered. But his friends, Quadir and Jarrell plan to make sure his music lives on. Promoting his music under the name the Architect, Steph becomes huge. As everyone listens to the Architect, a hot new music exec wants the Architect’s mixtape for himself. And as they become more famous, they must confront Steph’s past and figure out what happened to him, revealing secrets they kept from each other along the way as well.
2. King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo
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The dashing young king, Nikolai Lantsov, head of the once great Grisha Army, is leader of a country threatened by a bloody civil war. Nikolai must forge new alliances and stop an army gathering at his country’s borders. But inwardly, Nikolai is facing his own struggle. Dark magic rots him from within and slowly but surely, he’s struggling to beat the darkness that threatens to overtake him. Nikolai must journey across his country to conquer the darkness, even as the rising tide of the country’s war threatens to engulf all.
1. The Love & Lies of Rukhsana Ali by Sabina Khan
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The Love & Lies Of Rukhsana Aliby Sabina Khan tells the story of seventeen-year-old Rukhsana Ali who is secretly a lesbian. Unable to come out to her conversative Muslim parents, she can’t wait to go to college and escape her family. But her parents catch her kissing another girl and drag her off to Bangladesh for an extended vacation. In isolation, Rukhsana is met with her worst nightmare as she faces religious intolerance, bigotry, and homophobia. But she finds allies in this world and may even find strength within to forge her own future. This heartfelt novel showcases an aching portrait of isolation in your own culture and shows that love is love, no matter where it comes from.
In the wake of Darwinism, the world was left with one loaded question: what does this discovery say about God and the afterlife?This search for meaning helped to spawn the Victorian Era obsession with the supernatural, a movement that sought the answers to life’s big questions- by any means necessary. Seances, astral projection, and psychic readings caught the interest of the era’s intellectuals, including some of your favorite authors.
1. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
As it turns out, the author and creator of famous detective Sherlock Holmes was supernaturally gifted. Doyle was a devotee of the Spiritualist movement, a widespread pursuit of the mystical originating with three dubiously psychic sisters. In 1848, the Fox Sisters of Hydesville, NY used a pattern of taps to communicate with the spirits in their supposedly haunted house. In the United States, rampant industrialization (hello disease and poverty) led to a nationwideobsession with death. In a world where one-third of infants born in cities did not live over 1 year, the sisters thrived. Though they recanted their story in 1888, they later stated that they had beenpaid a bribe of $1,500 to… well, lie about lying. By that point, however, Spiritualism had its own supernatural power as a sweeping movement. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Spiritualist and mystery writer, was desperate to solve the greatest mystery of all: the secret of life beyond death.
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Conan Doyle’s fascination with the Fox Sisters led him to attempt a seance during his time as a physician. Known to fervently believe in telepathy, Conan Doyle publicized his beliefs during his notorious and brief friendship with magician Harry Houdini. Conan Doyle believed that Houdini had actual supernatural abilities, and, with his wife, convinced skeptic Houdini to participate in a seance. Conan Doyle’s wife claimed to receive a telepathic message from Houdini’s late mother; unfortunately, Houdini’s mother didn’t speak English. Yikes. Friendship over. Undeterred, Conan Doyle continued performing seances with his wife to contact his relatives who died in World War One. He would abandon his fiction writing at the height of his fame, focusing exclusively on his Spiritualist beliefs. After a lifelong obsession with ghosts, he eventually became one. Medium Estelle Roberts famously claimed to summon Doyle’s spiritin front of a large audience at his funeral in 1930.
The Mesmerist movement represented the crossover between proven science and faith in the unknown. A major part of Mesmerism was its focus on medical miracles and many (scientific?) attempts tocure disease with psychic energy. According to those who believed, a practitioner could put his patient into a trance and transfer his stronger energy into the weaker patient. This became (alarmingly!) a popular medical treatment in the 1830s and 1840s… not a time period known for its long lifespans. So much for your reason and skepticism, Dickens!
3. Henry James
Widely regarded as the bridge between American literary realism and modernism, The Turn of the Screwauthor Henry James had an occult connection through his brother. William James was a core member of the Society for Psychical Research, an organization of intelligentsia in pursuit of the secrets behind death. The Society sought to apply scientific principles to the unexplored territory of the supernatural. William himself was no crackpot, a Harvard man many call “the father of American psychology.” Although Henry James himself was not a member, the two brothers often stayed together, and Henry had frequent exposure to his brother’s ideas. One major area of William’s research was haunted houses, which he and the Society believed to be telepathic hotspots.
Image Via yourtownmonthly.com
The Society for Psychical Research had a documented impact on the rising Gothic literary moment. Elements of Gothic literatureinclude elements of horror, death, and gloom, along with the Romantic emphasis on intense emotions. William’s psychical investigations directly influenced Henry’s later ghost stories; it’s likely Henry also drew upon William’s paranormal research for his Gothic novel The Turn of the Screw.
As it turns out, anyone can believe in the supernatural, even the literary greats. So now the question is… do you?