Ladies of Horror Fiction Instagram Challenge Weekly Recap
Instagram Challenge,  Reading Recommendations

The “Villain” Recap

Who is the first villain that pops to mind when you think of books? For a lot of us it could be Lord Voldemort, Sauron, Randall Flagg, Dracula, and so on.   But thanks to this prompt we were able to find out about so many others!

(Psst: Miss last week’s recap of “Heart”? Check it out here.)

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My next Night Worms read sounds *super* interesting. The promo on the back says… “Bridget Jones meets the Exorcist” 😂😂😂 I gotta say, ‘nuff said ✋🏼 This book is also for the #ladiesofhorrorfiction prompt today “villain”. That wicked antagonist being cancer. Eff cancer. Our main character in this book, Eleanor goes to a remote town to recover from cancer treatments only to discover the town is pretty creepy and someone or someTHING keeps knocking on her door at night. This book is marketed as a horror/comedy and until I finish and review, you can check out @book.happy @bookishmommy and @gowsy33 for their reviews 👍🏼 thank you @fsgoriginals for this book! #horrorbooks #shirleybarrett #fsgoriginals #horrorbuff #nightworms

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Mother.horror shared The Bus On Thursday by Shirley Barrett.  Cancer is a villain we see in this story, but it is not the only one!

“Bridget Jones meets The Exorcist in this wickedly funny, dark novel about one woman’s post-cancer retreat to a remote Australian town and the horrors awaiting her
It wasn’t just the bad breakup that turned Eleanor Mellett’s life upside down. It was the cancer. And all the demons that came with it.

One day she felt a bit of a bump when she was scratching her armpit at work. The next thing she knew, her breast was being dissected and removed by an inappropriately attractive doctor, and she was suddenly deluged with cupcakes, judgy support groups, and her mum knitting sweaters.

Luckily, Eleanor discovers Talbingo, a remote little town looking for a primary-school teacher. Their Miss Barker up and vanished in the night, despite being the most caring teacher ever, according to everyone. Unfortunately, Talbingo is a bit creepy. It’s not just the communion-wine-guzzling friar prone to mad rants about how cancer is caused by demons. Or the unstable, overly sensitive kids, always going on about Miss Barker and her amazing sticker system. It’s living alone in a remote cabin, with no cell or Internet service, wondering why there are so many locks on the front door and who is knocking on it late at night.”

Booksinthefreezer gave us this stunning shot of Rebecca by Daphe du Maurier.  Who or what could the villain be in this one?!

“Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again . . .

The novel begins in Monte Carlo, where our heroine is swept off her feet by the dashing widower Maxim de Winter and his sudden proposal of marriage. Orphaned and working as a lady’s maid, she can barely believe her luck. It is only when they arrive at his massive country estate that she realizes how large a shadow his late wife will cast over their lives–presenting her with a lingering evil that threatens to destroy their marriage from beyond the grave.”

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Day 27 of the #ladiesofhorrorfiction is Villain. . . I was really struggling with this prompt today. I had to enlist @book.happy to help me because I haven’t actually read this one yet. It’s high up on my list, I just haven’t gotten to it yet. According to Emily, this book fits the prompt, so yay! 😂 . . This is a huge wake up call for me. I don’t make it a priority, or at least I didn’t, to seek out women who write horror/thrillers, and so my selection is very limited. I’ve literally used all the books I’ve already read that I own this month, which means I’ve read fewer than 30 horror books by women. That’s incredibly sad to me. However, now that I’m aware of it I intend to buy more books by women. So something positive has come from this experience. . . Do you find yourself reading more men than women? And in this case I’m specifically referring to horror. . . #bookstagram #villian #behindhereyes #sarahpinborough #horror #thriller #womenwriters #readmorewomen #womenwhowrite #eyeopener #booklover #booklove #bookworm #readersofinstagram

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Have you ever heard of Sarah Pinborough?  Well, thanks to this great photo by gowsy33 you can no longer say that!  In this picture we see Behind Her Eyes, which has one of the MOST talked about book endings I have come across!

“Louise is a single mom, a secretary, stuck in a modern-day rut. On a rare night out, she meets a man in a bar and sparks fly. Though he leaves after they kiss, she’s thrilled she finally connected with someone.

When Louise arrives at work on Monday, she meets her new boss, David. The man from the bar. The very married man from the bar…who says the kiss was a terrible mistake but who still can’t keep his eyes off Louise.

And then Louise bumps into Adele, who’s new to town and in need of a friend, but she also just happens to be married to David. David and Adele look like the picture-perfect husband and wife, but then why is David so controlling, and why is Adele so scared of him?

As Louise is drawn into David and Adele’s orbit, she uncovers more puzzling questions than answers. The only thing that is crystal clear is that something in this marriage is very, very wrong, but Louise can’t guess how wrong―and how far a person might go to protect their marriage’s secrets.”

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“Villain” is the word today for our #ladiesofhorrorfiction challenge & THE SHINING GIRLS is my pick. I’m one of the last people in the book world to give this a read but somehow I missed it when it was making a splash. I found this copy at a used bookstore and snapped it up. The reviews by my #goodreads friends are all over the place which kind of makes me want to read it more. And a time traveling serial killer as the villain? I need to know more!! . . Have you read it? Did you like it? . . #bookstagram #bookstagrammer #bookish #horror #fortheloveofreading #booksofinstagram #readersofinstagram #igbooks #igreads #igreaders #bookworm #booknerd #booknerdigans #literature #amreading #reader #literature #literary #horrorfiction #serialkiller

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Our very own barksbooks shared The Shining Girls by Lauren Beukes.  Any ideas on the villain(s) here??

“Harper Curtis is a killer who stepped out of the past. Kirby Mazrachi is the girl who was never meant to have a future.

Kirby is the last shining girl, one of the bright young women, burning with potential, whose lives Harper is destined to snuff out after he stumbles on a House in Depression-era Chicago that opens on to other times.

At the urging of the House, Harper inserts himself into the lives of the shining girls, waiting for the perfect moment to strike. He’s the ultimate hunter, vanishing into another time after each murder, untraceable-until one of his victims survives.

Determined to bring her would-be killer to justice, Kirby joins the Chicago Sun-Times to work with the ex-homicide reporter, Dan Velasquez, who covered her case. Soon Kirby finds herself closing in on the impossible truth . . .

The Shining Girls is a masterful twist on the serial killer tale: a violent quantum leap featuring a memorable and appealing heroine in pursuit of a deadly criminal.”

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Villain. “Olivia Mead is a headstrong, independent girl—a suffragist—in an age that prefers its girls to be docile. It’s 1900 in Oregon, and Olivia’s father, concerned that she’s headed for trouble, convinces a stage mesmerist to try to hypnotize the rebellion out of her. But the hypnotist gives her a terrible gift instead: she’s able to see people’s true natures, manifesting as visions of darkness. Olivia sees her father for the monster he is.” Here’s another book that’s been languishing on my tbr for way to long. I love this cover, I’m pretty sure that’s what made me pick it up. How’s your Monday going? I ran a million errands and I could close my eyes and go right to sleep. Except I’ve got lots to do here at home before my work week starts tomorrow. Ah, adulting. 😂😂😂 #ladiesofhorrorfiction #bookstagram #bookreader #bookcollector #booksandflowers #vintagebooks #thecurefordreaming #catwinters #bookishphotography

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Our final photo on the Villain recap is from dlgillis20 who beautifully showcased The Cure For Dreaming by Cat Winters.

“Olivia Mead is a headstrong, independent girl—a suffragist—in an age that prefers its girls to be docile. It’s 1900 in Oregon, and Olivia’s father, concerned that she’s headed for trouble, convinces a stage mesmerist to try to hypnotize the rebellion out of her. But the hypnotist, an intriguing young man named Henri Reverie, gives her a terrible gift instead: she’s able to see people’s true natures, manifesting as visions of darkness and goodness, while also unable to speak her true thoughts out loud. These supernatural challenges only make Olivia more determined to speak her mind, and so she’s drawn into a dangerous relationship with the hypnotist and his mysterious motives, all while secretly fighting for the rights of women. Winters breathes new life into history once again with an atmospheric, vividly real story, including archival photos and art from the period throughout.”


We hope that this post highlights that there are so many more villains our there than we may know!  Who is your favorite (or least favorite!) villain in horror books?  Let us know below!

Check back next week as we share our highlights from books dealing with “weather.”

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