Bump in the Night, a horror and true crime book swap
Poster by Ian Graham

We know D.C. Get our free newsletter to stay in the know.

Bump in the Night

Halloween might be a few months away, but fear not, horror fans. This Friday the 13th, Death Becomes Us and Recommend If You Like host a book-swap-cum-get-together for terror lovers and true crime fanatics. Bump in the Night takes place during your typical happy hour hours and encourages attendees to bring a nightmare-inducing book to trade for another white-knuckler. “We read and like to talk to other people that read about what they like to read,” says RIYL’s Brandon Wetherbee. “It’s like blind dating without any of the horribleness of blind dating.” RIYL, an arts and culture site, launched in June and hosted a cookbook swap earlier this summer, while Death Becomes Us is a true crime event production company. The partnering between the two groups was kismet, just like peanut butter and jelly or horror and true crime. As Jenn Tisdale of Death Becomes Us writes in the event listing, “horror and true crime have been intersecting for decades, which is why a mega book swap featuring both genres on Friday the 13th is an absolute must.” Tisdale offers real-life killer Ed Gein as an example of the overlap. Gein, who murdered two women in Plainfield, Wisconsin, in the 1950s and made keepsakes from human remains, has inspired a flood of fictional monsters and serial killers including Psycho’s Norman Bates, Silence of the LambsBuffalo Bill, and Leatherface, the chainsaw-wielding Big Bad of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. The book swap is free to attend and even those without a contribution are invited with RSVP to ensure the swap has enough spine-chillers for everyone to take home a new-to-them thriller. “We were always planning to do a horror and true crime book swap and just needed a reason why,” says Wetherbee. “Friday the 13th seemed like an obvious choice.” The event takes place from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Aug. 13 at Slash Run, 201 Upshur St. NW. riylmag.com. Free.