October 2021 TBR

October has always been a comforting month for me. I’ve always been happiest in Autumn, although it’s also the month when I feel the most homesick for the North Carolina mountains.

This month, I wanted to choose books for my TBR that have a cozy autumnal theme to them or that remind me of home. Most people likely think of October TBRs as the perfect place for horror books because of Halloween, but I actually prefer to read the spookier stuff come winter.

Let me know if you’ve read any of these books, and also what books you’re planning on reading this month!

Let’s start with the three books that take place in and around Asheville, NC.

First up, we have Thomas Wolfe’s Look Homeward, Angel. I’ve been to his grave a few times and I’ve drank sake on the porch of his house (which is now a museum) at 3 am on an autumn night, so it seems obvious that I should read one of his books. Look Homeward, Angel is considered to be semi-autobiographical and follows the life of the main character, Eugene Gant, from birth to the age of nineteen.

I took an English class in college where we read Ron Rash’s The World Made Straight and I adored it. Rash is actually a professor at the university where I went, although I never had the pleasure of meeting him. The Cove is one of his more well-known novels. Laurel Shelton is believed to be a witch by the townspeople and lives tucked away in the mountains. One day a mute stranger stumbles into the woods and she nurses him back to health.

Denise Kiernan’s The Last Castle is a non-fiction book about the Biltmore Estate, the lavish mansion built by George Vanderbilt in the mid-1890s. The Biltmore Estate is a lot of fun to visit, and this book has been on my TBR for awhile.


I just finished reading Frank Herbert’s Dune and have become completely obsessed with it, so I want to read its sequel, Dune Messiah, this month.

When I was at Barnes and Noble to pick up Dune Messiah, I also grabbed the Barnes and Noble edition of Isaac Asimov’s The Foundation Trilogy. I’ve always wanted to read one of his novels, and since the Apple TV adaptation of the series is currently being released, it seemed like the right time.

Leigh Bardugo’s King of Scars has been on my TBR for the past two months and I’ve just failed to get to it. Following King Nikolai, King of Scars and it’s sequel Rule of Wolves picks up where the Shadow and Bone trilogy leaves off.


Kurt Vonnegut is one of my favorite writers, but I’ve never read any of his non-fiction. Armageddon in Retrospect is a collection of essays on war and peace. It was published posthumously.

I haven’t heard many people mention Paula Brackston’s The Witch’s Daughter, but I came across it at a thrift store and it sounded pretty interesting. The tagline was enough to hook me: “My name is Elizabeth Anne Hawksmith, and my age is three hundred and eighty-four years. Each new settlement asks for a new journal, and so this Book of Shadows begins.

Like Vonnegut, Salman Rushdie is one of my favorite authors. Every one of his books that I’ve read thus far have become favorites. I’ll admit that Midnight’s Children, one of his better-known novels, intimidates me, although I can’t quite put my finger on why that is. 1,001 children were all born at midnight and each of them has an extraordinary gift. The novel takes place in 20th century India.


Rosamunde Pilcher’s A Place Like Home is a collection of fifteen romantic short stories. I don’t know too much about any of the individual pieces, but I’ve heard good things about this collection. Plus, the cover is gorgeous.

Finally, we have All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy, the first book in The Border Trilogy. Up to know, the only McCarthy book I’ve read has been The Road, which I consider one of my favorite books of all time. This novel is much different from The Road, however, as it follows the story of the last in a long line of Texas ranchers.


As always, I’ve chosen an ambitious TBR, but I’m really excited about reading all of these books. Let me know if you’ve read any of these and what you’re planning on reading in October!

Author: Penny W

Absolutely bookish.

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