What We've Been Reading
Book Reviews,  Reading Recommendations

What We’ve Been Reading #82

Today our team members are sharing three recent and recommended reads. We have a horror adjacent tale, a novella, and the true-crime story of a female serial killer. We hope you find something you’ll love!

Don’t forget to click either tag above to find more books worth your time ♥

Fauna by Christiane Vadnais

“Reminiscent of David Kronenberg, Kafka, and H.G. Wells… [Fauna] depicts the hypnotic Darwinian nightmare our negligence and denial will lead us to in the coming years.” – Le Devoir

A thick fog rolls in over Shivering Heights. The river overflows, the sky is streaked with toxic green, parasites proliferate in torrential rains and once safely classified species – humans included – are evolving and behaving in unprecedented ways. Against this poetically hostile backdrop, a biologist, Laura, fights to understand the nature and scope of the changes transforming her own body and the world around her.

Ten lush and bracing linked climate fictions depict a world gorgeous and terrifying in its likeness to our own.

Fauna, Christiane Vadnais’s first work of fiction, won the Horizons Imaginaires speculative fiction award, the City of Quebec book award, and was named one of 2018’s best books by Radio-Canada.

Amazon | Goodreads

Audra’s Teaser Review

A horror-adjacent read steeped in body horror, this one explores climate change and our role in the planet’s demise.

Read Audra’s entire review at Goodreads.

The Strange Tale of Miss Victoria Frank by Kelly Evans

Nikola Tesla, the visionary genius, is lecturing in New York City when he falls for Victoria, the mysterious young woman he sees night after night in the front row. The woman intrigues him; her curiosity is as great as his own, and her interest is wide-ranging.

But there’s something she’s hiding, a family secret so horrendous no one speaks of it. When Tesla finds out, he has a decision to make: listen to the inner voice warning him to stay away, or abandon his morality and help her with her own terrible science.

Amazon | Goodreads

Cassie’s Teaser Review

Kelly Evans’ book is just over the 100 page mark (in the physical paperback edition), which means it’s really quick to get through in a single sitting. With 2020 being the kind of year it has, I’ve relied heavily on books that I can pick up, get sucked into, and finish without having to stop – and The Strange Tale of Miss Victoria Frank was exactly what I was looking for. Quick, perfectly paced, and filled with enough mystery and action that by the time I finished, I was a little surprised at how much Evans managed to include in her story.

Read Cassie’s entire review at Let’s Get Galactic.

America’s First Female Serial Killer by Mary Kay McBrayer

America’s first female serial killer was not always a killer. America’s First Female Serial Killer novelizes the true story of first-generation Irish-American nurse Jane Toppan, born as Honora Kelley. Although all the facts are intact, books about her life and her crimes are all facts and no story. Jane Toppan was absolutely a monster, but she did not start out that way.

When Jane was a young child, her father abandoned her and her sister to the Boston Female Asylum. From there, Jane was indentured to a wealthy family who changed her name, never adopted her, wrote her out of the will, and essentially taught her how to hate herself. Jilted at the altar, Jane became a nurse and took control of her life, and the lives of her victims. 

Amazon | Goodreads

Alex’s Teaser Review

Before receiving this book, I had never heard of Jane Toppan. And now I can tell everyone about her! This would make a great intro to true crime book for readers trying to test the waters as it is not information overload or even stats upon stats. This book is sort of like a retelling and we get to witness the story from Jane’s side.

Read Alex’s entire review at Goodreads.

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

If you are a LOHF writer and have a book you’d like us to consider for a review please visit our review submission page here.

Laurie is one of our LOHF Admins. Laurie creates our review posts, coordinates review requests, oversees the Ladies of Horror Fiction directory, and manages our LOHF Goodreads group.

You can find Laurie on her blog Bark’s Book Nonsense, on Twitter as @barksbooks, on Instagram as @barksbooks, and on Goodreads.

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