What We've Been Reading
Book Reviews,  Reading Recommendations

What We’ve Been Reading #17

The Ladies of Horror Fiction have a new batch of books to recommend!

Book Cover Wilder Girls by Rory Power

Wilder Girls by Rory Power

It’s been eighteen months since the Raxter School for Girls was put under quarantine. Since the Tox hit and pulled Hetty’s life out from under her.

It started slow. First the teachers died one by one. Then it began to infect the students, turning their bodies strange and foreign. Now, cut off from the rest of the world and left to fend for themselves on their island home, the girls don’t dare wander outside the school’s fence, where the Tox has made the woods wild and dangerous. They wait for the cure they were promised as the Tox seeps into everything.

But when Byatt goes missing, Hetty will do anything to find her, even if it means breaking quarantine and braving the horrors that lie beyond the fence. And when she does, Hetty learns that there’s more to their story, to their life at Raxter, than she could have ever thought true. 

Goodreads | Amazon | Better World Books

Emily’s Teaser Review

Wilder Girls is Rory Power’s debut novel, and I absolutely adored it. This book went in a different direction than I was expecting, and it totally worked for me. The writing is gorgeous, and the story is entertaining and creative. I was immediately invested, and it was so hard to put this book down.

Click here to see Emily’s full review at Goodreads.


Chocking Back The Devil by Donna Lynch Book Cover

Chocking Back the Devil Poems by Donna Lynch

Choking Back the Devil by Donna Lynch is an invocation, an ancient invitation that summons the darkness within and channels those lonely spirits looking for a host. It’s a collection that lives in the realm of ghosts and family curses, witchcraft and urban legends, and if you’re brave enough to peek behind the veil, the hauntings that permeate these pages will break seals and open doorways, cut throats and shatter mirrors.

You see, these poems are small drownings, all those subtle suffocations that live in that place between our ribs that swells with panic, incubates fear. Lynch shows her readers that sometimes our shadow selves–our secrets–are our sharpest weapons, the knives that rip through flesh, suture pacts with demons, cut deals with entities looking for more than a homecoming, something better, more intimate than family.

It’s about the masks we wear and the reflections we choose not to look at, and what’s most terrifying about the spells is these incantations show that we are the possessed, that we are our greatest monster, and if we look out of the corner of our eyes, sometimes–if we’ve damned ourselves enough–we can catch a glimpse of our own burnings, what monstrosities and mockeries we’re to become.

So cross yourselves and say your prayers. Because in this world, you are the witch and the hunter, the girl and the wolf.

Goodreads | Amazon | Better World Books

Tracy’s Teaser Review

I loved this brutal, beautiful horror poetry from Donna Lynch. Almost all of these pieces were 4-5 stars for me. The longer ones are stunning; however, it was the brief ones that damaged me. The selections of just a few lines, or even a single page, boast an unparalleled stark brutality. 

Click here to see Tracy’s full review at Goodreads.


Book Cover Things We Lost In The Fire by Mariana Emriques

Things We Lost In The Fire Stories by Mariana Enriquez

In these wildly imaginative, devilishly daring tales of the macabre, internationally bestselling author Mariana Enriquez brings contemporary Argentina to vibrant life as a place where shocking inequality, violence, and corruption are the law of the land, while military dictatorship and legions of desaparecidos loom large in the collective memory. In these stories, reminiscent of Shirley Jackson and Julio Cortázar, three young friends distract themselves with drugs and pain in the midst a government-enforced blackout; a girl with nothing to lose steps into an abandoned house and never comes back out; to protest a viral form of domestic violence, a group of women set themselves on fire. 

But alongside the black magic and disturbing disappearances, these stories are fueled by compassion for the frightened and the lost, ultimately bringing these characters—mothers and daughters, husbands and wives—into a surprisingly familiar reality. Written in hypnotic prose that gives grace to the grotesque, Things We Lost in the Fire is a powerful exploration of what happens when our darkest desires are left to roam unchecked, and signals the arrival of an astonishing and necessary voice in contemporary fiction. 

Goodreads | Amazon | Better World Books

Toni’s Teaser Review

I think that each story gives you a small glimpse into some of the political and social unrest in Argentina wrapped in horror stories. The stories aren’t particularly gory. But personally, I think that is more horror in the everyday that is discussed in each of the stories. There is so much to the backstories where the stories are taking place that I was very glad there was information about the landscape in Argentina while the author was growing up.

Click here to see Toni’s full review at The Misadventures of a Reader.


Thanks for joining us today and we hope you found something to add to your tbr list! Please share your recent reads with us in the comments below.

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