What is a haunted house story if not a story about grief? Ghosts serve as stand-ins for anything from unresolved family trauma to untold horrors from past generations. And that’s what makes ghost stories so much fun. It’s not about the ghosts, themselves, but about what they represent for those being haunted. Grady Hendrix’s How to Sell a Haunted House understands that idea perfectly. One-part traditional haunted house story, one-part rumination on inherited grief and trauma, and one-part campy horror delight, How to Sell a Haunted House is a bombastically confident, deeply emotional, and wholly unpredictable joyride. It doesn’t necessarily give you what the synopsis implies, but it’s an undeniably wild ride from start to finish. (4.5 out of 5 wands)Continue reading
If you’ve ever seen a slasher film, then you’re familiar with the Final Girl. She’s the girl who makes it through the end of the movie, vanquishing the Killer and surviving the bloodbath. But what happens to a Final Girl after the credits roll and the story’s over? How does she cope with all of that trauma and survivor’s guilt? Is she ever able to move on and escape the shadow of the Monster that hunted her? Grady Hendrix’s The Final Girl Support Group explores all of these questions, acting as both a love letter to slasher films and a deconstruction of the genre and many of its tropes. It’s a fast-paced, thrilling read that you won’t want to put down. Hendrix delivers a novel that’s every bit as action-packed and horrific as the best horror films. But he also deftly explores the trauma of multiple Final Girls – all of whom are inspired by some of the most popular horror franchises. If you’re a fan of horror movies, The Final Girl Support Group is a must-read. (4.5 out of 5 wands)
(NOTE: I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley and the publisher. All thoughts are my own.)
The FInal Girl Support Group
Written by Grady Hendrix
Lynnette Tarkington is a real-life final girl who survived a massacre twenty-two years ago, and it has defined every day of her life since. And she’s not alone. For decades she’s been meeting with five other actual final girls and their therapist in a support group for those who survived the unthinkable, putting their lives back together, piece by piece. That is until one of the women misses a meeting and Lynnette’s worst fears are realized—someone knows about the group and is determined to take their lives apart again, piece by piece. But the thing about these final girls is that they have each other now, and that no matter how bad the odds, how dark the night, how sharp the knife…they will never, ever give up.