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Literary Trick-or-Treat: 8 Book & Candy Pairings

If Halloween’s about one thing, it’s the delicious candy. But! If Halloween’s about two things, it’s the delicious candy and good books (We’re Tor. We’re nerds).

Check out these pairings of sweet treats and matching reads!


the fragile threads of power by v.e. scwab in front of an array of sour patch kids watermelonsThe Fragile Threads of Power & Sour Patch Kids Watermelon

The tag for Sour Patch Kids might be Sour, Sweet, Gone—but not V. E. Schwab! They are BACK, returning to the expansive world(s) they created in the Shades of Magic Trilogy. The Fragile Threads of Power features both new characters and old, which is why we’ve paired it with Sour Patch Kids Watermelon. It’s everything you love and a little more. A little different. Familiar, yet new. 


traitor of redwinter by ed mcdonald in front of an ad for zombie skittles, reading BEWARE OF ROTTEN ZOMBIE SKITTLESTraitor of Redwinter & Zombie Skittles 

For very brief spans in 2019 and 2020, Skittles ran a special limited-time Halloween campaign, delivering unto us Zombie Skittles. They’re just like regular Skittles, but a few—visually indecipherable from their more delicious brethren—were zombies, and tasted awful. Traitor of Redwinter by Ed McDonald is way cooler than Zombie Skittles because it brings all the scary candy’s suspense without tasting abominable (probably just tastes neutrally of paper, if you tried to snack on it). 

On Sale 10.24.23


Bookshops & bonedust by travis baldree in front of a golden array of wrapped reese's peanut butter cupsBookshops & Bonedust & Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup  

The much-loved Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup owes its storied position in candy history to its artful fusion of two flavors: Chocolate. Peanut butter. We honor Bookshops & Bonedust by Travis Baldree by pairing it with the peanut butter cup, because it too is a smooth blend of distinct flavors. Viv is a mercenary, but a warrior stuck in recovery in a tiny beach town. But adventures seldom play out as you expect. This sleepy town and its cozy bookshop are full of peanut butter, or they are peanut butter and adventure is the chocolate. This metaphor makes sense. We will not be taking any questions. 

On Sale 11.7.23


devil's gun by cat rambo next to a suspicious bad of 'Disco's' candy Devil’s Gun & Disco’s

Cat Rambo’s Disco Space Opera series (and playlist! Check out their playlist!) began with You Sexy Thing and continued with Devil’s Gun, named respectively after the rock time tunes “You Sexy Thing” by Hot Chocolate and “Devil’s Gun” by C.J. & Co. Fittingly, we have elected to pair this sci-fi adventure with Disco’s, a candy we’ve never heard of before and seems to be available primarily in the United Kingdom? But whatever. C’est la vie. We did it for the name. 


the first binding by r.r. virdi being flanked by two shiny gummi sharksThe First Binding & Giant Gummy Shark 

For R.R. Virdi’s hugely epic The First Binding, we’re hauling in the world’s largest gummy shark. Like this massive gummified carnivore confection, The First Binding will sustain you for a while. One will feed your body, and one will nourish the soul.  

Now Available in Paperback!


Starter villain by john scalzi in front of a rainbow array of sour patch kidsStarter Villain & Sour Patch Kids (Original)

Starter Villain by John Scalzi is the story of a hapless guy who inherits his uncle’s supervillain business, including among other assets, an array of espionage-ready cats. We pair it with the original Sour Patch Kids, harkening back to that aforementioned tag, Sour, Sweet, Gone. This is a book of cozy opposites—namely surprisingly cool supervillains. 


exadelic by jon evans in front of a rainbow array of monster energy drinks in different flavorsExadelic & Monster Energy 

Far from a traditional Halloween trick-or-treat staple, these energy drinks nevertheless taste like candy, and pair perfectly with Jon Evans Exadelic, which is a book about occult magic and computer code. A trusty goto beverage for exhausted software engineers everywhere, this sweet, sugary drink counts as candy for the purposes of this article, and is the perfect fuel to keep you awake late into the night as you read Exadelic


sandymancer by david edison in front of some red hot candiesSandymancer & Red Hots 

David Edison’s Sandymancer is a classic fantasy adventure of mad god-kings, regular people with extraordinary powers, and lots of hot climates. The final note is what inspires us to dedicate a spot on this feature to Red Hots. Can you feel the heat? Hopefully you can’t taste the sand. Hopefully you have escaped the ire of mad gods. 

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Dive into Something Sweet with These Book + Candy Pairings!

Nothing heralds in the fall season better than seeing Halloween candy displayed front and center in stores. This spooky holiday season, trick or treat yourself to a good book and matching candy. Take a bite out of entries in beloved franchises, thrilling conclusions to series or start a new series, because nothing screams scary season more than candy, thrills, and a good book.

By Lizzy Hosty


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The God is Not Willing by Steven Erikson + Mike and Ikes

Like that first Mike and Ike after that dark period of time when Mike and Ike were split up (and sold candy as “Mikes” or “Ikes” only), coming back to the world of Malazan with the new Witness trilogy is sweet relief. The first book in the trilogy, The God is Not Willing, takes place several years after three warriors brought chaos to the Silver Lake. Now, there is a new threat rising for the Teblor, and they’re running out of time.

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The Devil You Know by Kit Rocha and Starbursts

In this second book in the Mercenary Librarians series, Maya has a price on her head ever since escaping TechCorps where she was genetically engineered for genius and trained for revolution. And Gray, whose days are numbered due to his body rejecting his modification, has decided to protect Maya during his final days. Starbursts are the perfect candy to eat while reading, because you can use the paper wrappers as bookmarks! Or as small tissues for your tears. Whichever works.

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Invisible Sun by Charles Stross and Candy Corn

Invisible Sun by Charles Stross is the techno-thriller conclusion to the Empire Games trilogy, and newest installment in the Merchant Princes universe. With alternating timelines, renegades on the run, and robotic alien invaders, it’s up to a disgraced worldwalker and her intertemporal extraordinaire agent of a mother to neutralize the livewire contention before it’s too late. Invisible Sun goes perfectly with candy corn – even the color scheme is matching!

 

 

 

 

Perhaps the Stars by Ada Palmer and M&Ms

In the last book of the Terra Ignota series, World Peace turns into global civil war when the veil covering the facade of utopian stability is lifted. Is the key to salvation to remain Earth-bound or, perhaps, to start anew throughout the far reaches of the stars? Perhaps the Stars by Ada Palmer can best be complemented by classic chocolate M&Ms – in Halloween packaging, of course – to get the rich, sweet taste of a concluding book that hits just right.

 

 

 

 

Isolate by L. E. Modesitt Jr. and Witch’s Brew Kit Kats

Just as the Witch’s Brew Kit Kats brings a new flavor to the standard Kit Kats, so too does L. E. Modesitt Jr. brings us a sharp new series The Grand Illusion, starting with Isolate. The novel follows Steffan Dekkard, an isolate – one of the few who can withstand empaths – and his security partner Avraal Ysella, an empath, as they become embroiled in political espionage and danger after they and their employer become targets of an assassin.

What’s your favorite candy and book pairing? Tell us in the comments!

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