What We've Been Reading
Book Reviews,  Reading Recommendations

What We’ve Been Reading #125

Today our team members are sharing three recommended reads by Chloe N. Clark, Sylvia Plath and Carmen Maria Machado. We hope you find something you’ll love!

Please click either tag above to read more team recommendations.


Escaping the Body poems by Chloe N.Clark

Chloe N. Clark’s poetry collection takes readers through a catalog of the speculative body. Escaping the Body is a surreal and profound journey through space, forests, monsters, myths, spells, magic tricks, forests, and the body. Escaping the Body is a collection of dreams of the flesh, exploring the cosmic rifts between the soul and the body, encouraging readers to escape their body in search of the liminal space beyond skin and bones.

Goodreads | Amazon

Cassie’s Teaser Review

This is my first read by the author, but I’m excited to look into more – I really liked it! It’s a darker poetry collection, which is my favorite. I love the emotions in here, the words perfectly conveying everything from hurt to anger to apathy.

Read Cassie’s entire review at Goodreads.


Mary Ventura and the Ninth Kingdom by Sylvia Plath

Never before published, this newly discovered story by literary legend Sylvia Plath stands on its own and is remarkable for its symbolic, allegorical approach to a young woman’s rebellion against convention and forceful taking control of her own life.

Written while Sylvia Plath was a student at Smith College in 1952, Mary Ventura and The Ninth Kingdom tells the story of a young woman’s fateful train journey.

Lips the color of blood, the sun an unprecedented orange, train wheels that sound like “guilt, and guilt, and guilt” these are just some of the things Mary Ventura begins to notice on her journey to the ninth kingdom.

“But what is the ninth kingdom?” she asks a kind-seeming lady in her carriage. “It is the kingdom of the frozen will,” comes the reply. “There is no going back.”

Sylvia Plath’s strange, dark tale of female agency and independence, written not long after she herself left home, grapples with mortality in motion.

Goodreads | Amazon | Bookshop

Audra’s Teaser Review

It’s pretty amazing to think that Plath originally wrote this story when she was just 20—it shows her raw talent and and pure storytelling power. I wish we could have gotten more fiction work from her.

Read Audra’s entire review at Goodreads.


In The Dream House by Carmen Maria Machado

For years Carmen Maria Machado has struggled to articulate her experiences in an abusive same-sex relationship. In this extraordinarily candid and radically inventive memoir, Machado tackles a dark and difficult subject with wit, inventiveness and an inquiring spirit, as she uses a series of narrative tropes—including classic horror themes—to create an entirely unique piece of work which is destined to become an instant classic.

Goodreads | Amazon | Bookshop

Alex’s Teaser Review

ALL. THE. STARS. Wow! Carmen Maria Machado bares all in this memoir, IN THE DREAM HOUSE. It is smart. It is clever. It is raw. It is brilliant! Exploring queer domestic abuse on the most personal level, Machado shares her painful experiences with us but does so in such a way that can leave readers empowered and setup to be, quite simply said, better people.

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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