October is just around the corner, which means it's only a couple of weeks until Halloween, and since it is never too early to get into the spirit it's the perfect time to get a head start on that Halloween reading list. And when it comes to horror, nothing beats a good anthology.
Slasher Girls and Monster Boys features 14 stories that all draw inspiration from a classic book, film, or song – not necessarily from the horror world – and use it to create something new …and terrifying.
Even though I am a huge horror fan, I trend to be rather picky about the kind of horror I enjoy. So most anthologies end up being really hit or miss, but with this one I can honestly say that there wasn't one story that I felt like skipping. Every single one–even those with themes I usually don't care for–was so well written that it kept me interested (and chilled) throughout. Plus, my favorite part of it was probably to identify what each story is based on. Here are a couple of my personal highlights:
The Birds of Azalea Street by Nova Ren Suma
The first story of the collection, is about teenage girls, a creepy neighbor and birds (lots of birds). On the eerie instead of the scary side, it's perfectly situated at the beginning of the book, as it sets the mood without being too much.
Verse Chorus Verse by Leigh Bardugo
This one takes place in a rehab facility and deals with the pressures and sacrifices that come with being a teen idol. The theme definitely makes this one stand out a little, and without spoiling anything I have to say that the inspiration for this story is right up my alley.
The Flicker, The Fingers, The Beat, The Sight by April Genevieve Tucholke
Tucholke is the only one of the authors I was actually familiar with, so I expected to like this one. And I wasn't disappointed. The story mixes one of my all time favorite books with a famous urban legend. That said, it isn't anything new, but sometimes a feeling of familiarity can make things scarier than they actually are. So in a way this works in the story's favor.
Stitches by A.G. Howard
This might be the goriest out of the stories. The imagery is nothing for the faint hearted, but if you're not turned off by a little blood (and severed limbs) it's an excellent read with a very classic horror feel.
All in all, I was really impressed with this anthology and would recommend it to anyone who loves a good scare.
Peace, Love, and Lobsters