Thursday, December 31, 2020

December 2020: Monthly Recap

The Ladies of Horror Fiction team wound down the year with Christmas themed movie nights, an LOHF gift guide, interviews, reviews, a readalong, and we shared a lot of resolutions the Ladies of Horror Fiction in the community have planned for 2021! Thank you to Madeleine Swann and Alexis Henderson for taking the time to answer our questions and to all of the amazing LOHF who shared their resolutions with us this month. And thank you to the readers who continue to participate and support what we do all year long!

News and Announcements

December 2020 LOHF New Releases
Each month the Ladies of Horror Fiction team posts all of the books we are aware of that will be releasing during that month.

#LadiesFirst21 Challenge
The Ladies of Horror Fiction team is hosting the Ladies First challenge again for the New Year! To participate in the challenge, simply choose a Ladies of Horror Fiction book as your first book of the year and share it with us on social media under #LadiesFirst21!

#LOHFMovieNights
The Ladies of Horror Fiction hosted the following movie watch parties of horror movies starring and/or directed by women:

Reviews

What We’re Reading #74

What We’re Reading #75

What We’ve Been Reading #76

What We’ve Been Reading #77

Special Topics and Guest Posts

A Spooky LOHF Gift Guide to Womxn-Owned Businesses
‘Tis the season! To support small womxn-owned businesses creating creepy gifts, that is. For you and your fellow friends looking for horror inspired clothing and unique darkly delicious decor, artwork, and more, take a look at some of these incredible shops.

Author Spotlight: Madeleine Swann
Please join us in welcoming Madeleine Swann to Ladies of Horror Fiction! Team member Tracy was excited to ask Madeleine some great questions and we think you will dig the answers!

Q & A with Alexis Henderson | The Year of the Witching
We were given the opportunity to send over our burning questions to Alexis Henderson, and she gave us the inside scoop on The Year of the Witching, her process, what she’s reading, and what’s next!

2021 Resolutions: LOHF Author Edition
In our excitement to prepare for the year ahead, we thought it’d be fun to ask a few authors in the horror community to contribute some of their bookish or writing related New Years Resolutions for us to share with all of you!

YA/MG Horror Spotlight December 2020
Check out the books that were released in December as well as what our team has been reading and reviewing.


Jen is one of our LOHF admins. Jen manages the technical side of the Ladies of Horror Fiction website. She also keeps a spotlight on middle grade and young adult horror each month.

You can also find Jen on her blog Book Den, Twitter as @bookden, Instagram as @bookdenjen, on Goodreads, and Letterboxd.

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

What We've Been Reading #77

Today our team members are sharing three recent and recommended reads with links to five reviews. We have an eclectic mix of light-hearted sexy horror, an epic tale of revenge and a beautiful collection of classic weird tales. We hope you’ll find something you’ll love!

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

All You Need Is Love & A Strong Electric Current by Mackenzie Kiera

Can you keep a secret? Sadie has a fetish. She likes it cold. The only man who has understood and loved her for this perversion is her ambulance partner and boyfriend: Michael. So, when Michael unexpectedly gets run over by a snowplow, Sadie will stop at nothing to keep him alive, to keep bringing him back from the dead again and again for one thing and one thing only.

But when Michael begins to deteriorate, when things that were once hard become loose and floppy, Sadie finds herself taking lives instead of saving them. In an effort to keep Michael’s organs pumping, Sadie has to go against her paramedic training and human instincts and kill instead of rescue. But she’s doing it in the name of love, so it’s okay. Right? Totally. When does love turn to obsession? How far will Sadie go for the one she loves?

Book 14 in the Rewind-or-Die series: imagine your local movie rental store back in the ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s, remember all those fantastic covers. Remember taking those movies home and watching in awe as the stories unfolded in nasty rainbows of gore, remember the atmosphere and textures. Remember the blood.

Amazon | Goodreads

Audra’s Teaser Review

I’m not sure what just happened, but I am sure that I loved every second of it.

Read Audra’s entire 5 star review at Goodreads.

Alex’s Teaser Review

All You Need is Love and a Strong Electric Current is another fun and quirky addition to the Rewind or Die series from Unnerving. It embodies that whole catalog with its throwbacks and modernized twists. I see this one making the rounds with all my friends and us all having some great discussions!

Read Alex’s entire review at Goodreads.

The Fourth Whore by E.V. Knight

The Fourth Whore by EV Knight

Kenzi Brooks watched The Scribble Man collect her brother’s soul after a hit and run when she was seven. He gave her a present that day – a lucky rabbit’s foot. Sixteen years later, she no longer believes in The Scribble Man, she believes in survival and does what she has to in the slums of Detroit. When thugs kill her mother and beat Kenzi to near death, she accidentally releases Lilith from her prison within the time-worn keychain.

And Hell hath no fury…

Lilith is out for revenge. Revenge against God, Sariel (Angel of Death and Kenzi’s Scribble Man), and all of mankind for relegating her to nothing more than a demoness for refusing to submit to her husband. She’s put together an apocalyptic plan to destroy everyone who has forsaken her. Forget the Four Horsemen, Lilith is assembling the Four Whores.

Will Kenzi rise against her to save the world and The Scribble Man or will she become The Fourth Whore?

Amazon | Goodreads

Emily’s Teaser Review

The Fourth Whore is the debut novel from EV Knight! The story is creative, and the writing is vivid.

Read Emily’s entire review at Goodreads.

Laurie’s Teaser Review

I’m giving THE FOURTH WHORE 4 ½ stars and I would easily recommend it to anyone with a strong stomach looking for a gripping tale of sublime unbridled fury and the humans caught up in the fiery flames of revenge.

Read Laurie’s entire review at Goodreads.

Women’s Weird Strange Stories by Women 1890 – 1940

Early Weird fiction embraces the supernatural, horror, science fiction, fantasy and the Gothic, and was explored with enthusiasm by many women writers in the United Kingdom and in the USA. Melissa Edmundson has brought together a compelling collection of the best Weird short stories by women from the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, to thrill new readers and delight these authors’ fans.

Amazon | Goodreads

Jen’s Teaser Review

If you are a fan of the old Weird Tales stories or you love a great literary ghost story, do yourself a favor and pick up a copy of Women’s Weird. Horror has such incredible women in its history; I would love nothing more than to know these tales were getting the audience they deserve.

Read Jen’s entire 5 star review at Book Den.

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.

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

YA/MG Horror Spotlight December 2020

The Ladies of Horror Fiction team is putting a spotlight on Young Adult and Middle Grade horror each month. Below we are featuring the books that were released in December as well as what our team has been reading and reviewing.

Young Adult New Releases

For Better or Cursed by Kate Williams

Adventures in Babysitting meets Buffy the Vampire Slayer in this funny, action-packed sequel about a coven of witchy babysitters who realize their calling to protect the innocent and save the world from an onslaught of evil.

Esme Pearl’s life used to be all about bumming rides and babysitting. Sure, it wasn’t glamorous, but it was predictable. All that changed when Cassandra Heaven came to town, and they discovered their complicated, and connected, legacy: Esme and Cassandra are Sitters, supernaturally-gifted teens armed with an ever-changing grimoire of Sitter witchcraft to help them protect the innocent and keep evil demons at bay. You know, the typical teenage stuff.

But just as Esme is starting to adjust to–and maybe even like–her new normal, life lobs another glitter bomb her way. The Synod–the Sitterhood’s governing circle–has called a Summit, a once-in-a-generation gathering that promises training, education, and whole lot of ice-breakers.

Esme should be excited–a Summit might mean she can finally get the answers she desperately wants–but she can’t shake a building sense of panic. Especially since Cassandra’s not acting like herself; Esme’s dad is MIA; Pig is out of dog food; Janis is scared to be alone; and there’s a guy who seems too good to be true, again. Worst of all, it soon becomes clear, there’s no one watching the kids. It’s obvious the Summit is a haute mess, but will it be a deadly one, too?

Expected publication: December 15th 2020 by Delacorte Press | Amazon | Goodreads

Young Adult Books Reviewed

This month Laurie reviewed and recommends Horrid by Katrina Leno. Be sure to check out Laurie’s review of Horrid (“I thought this was a quirky and thoroughly creepy book from beginning to end.”)

Jen read and reviewed Fractured Tide by Leslie Lutz. You can check out Jen’s review of Fracture Tide (“It’s a thrilling book, and the strange setting adds a lot to the experience.”)

Middle Grade Books Reviewed

This month Jen also reviewed the following middle grade novels:

Ghost Squad by Claribel A. Ortega. Don’t miss Jen’s 5 star review of Ghost Squad (“Ghost Squad is cute, scary, funny, and heartwarming.”)

The Girl and the Ghost by Hanna Alkaf. Be sure to check out Jen’s review of The Girl and the Ghost (“This book has everything I want in a middle grade novel.”)

The Haunting by Lindsey Duga. You can also read Jen’s review of The Haunting (“This is exactly the kind of middle grade book I would have loved as a kid.”)


Have you read any of the books we read or reviewed this month? Let us know what YA or MG books you have read recently!


Jen is one of our LOHF admins. Jen manages the technical side of the Ladies of Horror Fiction website. She also keeps a spotlight on middle grade and young adult horror each month.

You can also find Jen on her blog Book Den, Twitter as @bookden, Instagram as @bookdenjen, on Goodreads, and Letterboxd.

Monday, December 28, 2020

2021 Resolutions: LOHF Author Edition

2020 has been a mixed bag for us all, hasn’t it? Last New Years feels like it happened a decade ago instead of just 12 normal months. I’m sure I’m not the only one ready to say goodbye to the last year, and welcome the next one with open arms!

In our excitement to prepare for the year ahead, we thought it’d be fun to ask a few authors in the horror community to contribute some of their bookish or writing related New Years Resolutions for us to share with all of you! From blogging to new books, let’s see what some of our favorite #LadiesOfHorrorFiction have planned for 2021!



I’ve never been very good at making (or keeping!) New Year’s Resolutions, but for 2021, I’m just hoping to have a little more fun, both as a writer and a reader. 2020 has been such a hard year for all of us, so next year, I’m definitely aiming to take out more time and enjoy the process as a writer and my time as a reader. Sometimes, in the chaos of life, it can be easy to lose sight of how lucky we all are to be part of such a great genre with so many fantastic writers, reviewers, and readers; if nothing else, I’d like to focus on that more for 2021.

Gwendolyn Kiste, author of Boneset and Feathers | Twitter

During 2021, I plan to keep reading and collecting the books that catch my eye. I might even tackle several 800+ page epics I have on my TBR pile. I also hope to write up a storm & spend more time with the (many) neglected first drafts sitting on my hard drive. Grinning face with smiling eyes

Yolanda Sfetsos, author of The Bone Factory | Twitter

My writing resolution is to write every day!

Briana Morgan, author of Unboxed | Twitter

Every year, I set a goal to read 100 books. For 2021, I’m not setting a goal at all. I want to see what happens when I read without something constantly measuring me against other people or feeding me statistics–Goodreads, I’m looking at you, kid. I’ll be curious to see how this changes my reading habits and speed, and I’m low-key hoping the freedom will quiet the you’re-not-reading-enough voice that often lives in my head and just let me enjoy the act of getting happily, pleasantly lost again.

Stephanie M. Wytovich, author of The Apocalyptic Mannequin | Twitter

I’d really like to write more short stories. I’ve written five novels in the last couple of years, none at less than 70k words, but really struggle with short-form. Horror lends itself so perfectly to the short sharp shock, though, that I’d really like to remedy that – and ideally get a collection of stories out by this time next year. Once I’ve written the lesbian splatterpunk Western I have planned, anyway!

Nat Edwards AKA TC Parker, author of Saltblood | Twitter

As far as writing resolutions for 2021 go, I have a goal to use my blog more (I have some fun ideas that I’m really excited about!), to also work on more short fiction, and to finish this ocean horror book I started! My other goal, which is something I tell myself every year, is to stop comparing my productivity to other writers. Social media can be great, but it can also make you feel so behind or like you’re not successful enough. I’ll take quality over quantity any day!

Sara Tantlinger, author of Cradleland of Parasites | Twitter

2021 will see me relocate to my rural roots and begin writing full-time. I’m hoping the landscape will turn the pages as surely as Tommy, Betty and Fiddler turned the Wheel in the Five Turns!

Stephanie Ellis, author of The Five Turns of the Wheel | Twitter

For 2021, I want to cut down on swearing in my writing. HAHAHAHA ok but really, my resolutions for my writing are the same as for the rest of my life: to be braver, more patient, and more forgiving.

Laurel Hightower, author of Crossroads | Twitter

My 2021 resolutions: to remember that reading and writing are for me FIRST. To write for the sheer pleasure of it—without worrying about who will see it, or where or if it will be published. To read more of what lights me up, and to follow my own reading interests unabashedly. To remember why I love reading in the first place—and that it has nothing to do with racking up some arbitrary number on goodreads, and everything to do with bringing me joy.

Lisa Quigley, author of Hell’s Bells | Twitter

I resolve to finish the various short stories I started in 2020, especially the ones meant for my next collection, “Someone to Share My Nightmares.”

Sonora Taylor, author of Seeing Things | Twitter

Don’t laugh. I bought a planner. This may sound small, but I’m so bad with writing things down. Yes, I have an insane memory. So I usually never write things down, but age has crept up on me and now it’s so difficult to keep track with my schedule and my kid’s schedules and husband’s schedule so my New Year’s resolution to help me be a better writer is to write down and plan better. I didn’t say I’d be totally organized. I just said better. Small steps.

Cynthia Pelayo, author of Children of Chicago | Twitter

For 2021, I hope to finish my current horror WIP about a young woman struggling to find her inner strength as evil threatens. I’m also excited to finish my MFA in Writing and, hopefully, begin a career in editing!

Nico Bell, author of Food Fright | Twitter

Black Angel Press will be launching, a horror indie press I’ll run with Steph Ellis. I personally will be writing a YA timeslip supernatural gothic novel.

Alyson Faye, author of The Lost Girl & Spindleshanks

My writing resolution is to get my first short story collection out into The Universe, along with a non-fiction book proposal. Happy writing!

Rhonda J. Garcia | Twitter

my writing resolution for 2021 is to get more stories out there, and to hopefully publish a book that is big enough to have my name on the spine!

doungjai gam, author of watch the whole goddamned thing burn | Twitter

As a writer, for many reasons, 2020 saw me having neglected my poetry and short fiction collections I had already finished writing in 2019. I plan to find homes for, and/or self-publish, my 2-3 poetry collections and 1-2 short fiction collections, with hopefully a few being available in 2021. I plan to continue to write my novella and novels in progress, and not only write more poetry and short fiction, but to get them sent to market. As a woman-owned business, I plan to not only cultivate my current services, but to begin focused work toward my goal of publishing select others as well. And somehow, I’m adding to my schedule getting in more reading time – probably by bribing myself with gummy candy and milk duds.

Erin Sweet Al-Mehairi, author of breathe. breathe. | Twitter

For over a year I have been in a liminal headspace. 2020 said, “Get ready to be thrown in the deep end!” There were moments of great success and times I didn’t want to open my eyes ever again. There is a Mexican stone sculpture of the Aztec Moon goddess, Coyolxauhqui. She is a woman with a body in pieces. I was so taken by her I included her in my story Templo Mayor. I’ve been in pieces for a long time and now finally coming into my own. The pandemic forced me to. I’m better for my personal tribulations. So 2021? I’m my authentic self doing what I love. There will most likely be big changes and ‘m okay with that. My resolution is to be the best version of myself with an open heart to whatever life has in store. And two book releases.

V. Castro, author of Goddess of Filth | Twitter

I resolve to add even more descriptions of delicious food to each piece I write, making myself just hungry enough to fail in my second resolution. I resolve to stop rubbing my hands together and cackling madly when I’m writing a good scene, because, frankly, it’s freaking out my cat. I resolve to rewrite the book that I resolved to rewrite in 2019 and 2020. I resolve to spend less time talking about my writing plans on social media, and more time actually writing these things.

Jill Girardi, author of Hantu Macabre | Twitter

Big thank you to the authors who participated & shared their 2021 goals with us! We had a lot of fun reading them, and will be sharing our own LOHF Team Member resolutions soon!


Cassie is one of our prolific contributing reviewers and helps with interviews and website content.

Find her online at her blog www.letsgetgalactic.com, Twitter as @ctrlaltcassie, or over at her Etsy store, where she has amazing original art prints, cross stitch kits, bookmarks, coloring & activity books, and more!


Wednesday, December 23, 2020

What We've Been Reading #76

Today our team members are sharing three recent and recommended reads. There’s a little something for everyone here. We have a thriller, a creature feature and a modern day gothic. We hope you’ll find something you’ll love!

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

When No One Is Watching by Alyssa Cole

Sydney Green is Brooklyn born and raised, but her beloved neighborhood seems to change every time she blinks. Condos are sprouting like weeds, FOR SALE signs are popping up overnight, and the neighbors she’s known all her life are disappearing. To hold onto her community’s past and present, Sydney channels her frustration into a walking tour and finds an unlikely and unwanted assistant in one of the new arrivals to the block—her neighbor Theo.

But Sydney and Theo’s deep dive into history quickly becomes a dizzying descent into paranoia and fear. Their neighbors may not have moved to the suburbs after all, and the push to revitalize the community may be more deadly than advertised.

When does coincidence become conspiracy? Where do people go when gentrification pushes them out? Can Sydney and Theo trust each other—or themselves—long enough to find out before they too disappear?

Amazon | Goodreads

Audra’s Teaser Review

This book encapsulates everything that I always find myself hungry for when I finish reading a thriller. I hope everyone is paying attention, because Alyssa Cole has set a new standard for thriller/horror novels, and I won’t be going back to the old style.

Read Audra’s entire review at Goodreads.

The Dark Land by D M Shepard

A dark tale of legendary creatures stalking the isolated trails of Wrangell-St. Elias National Park in the deep cold of winter.Lured by her high peaks and vast forests, adventurers swarm to the siren call of Alaska’s backcountry. Her harsh bite scars many. Some never return.Please find my son’s remains…Haunted by the last request of her foster mother, experienced outdoorswoman, Rose Long, skis into the Wrangell-St. Elias wilderness to search for clues surrounding the missing man. Concerned about the suspicious circumstances surrounding the older woman’s death, her childhood friend, Ulrik, joins the quest to protect the woman he secretly loves.Ancient evil seethes in the ice-locked boreal forest, watching their every move during the long northern nights. The legend of the Headless Ravine is steeped in blood. The Dark Land’s hunger for flesh never sleeps, even in the deepest cold of winter—and it has marked Rose as its next victim.

Amazon | Goodreads

Alex’s Teaser Review

The Dark Land is a fast-paced action horror story (with a dash of romance) that takes place in the dark, cold forests of Alaska’s back-country. The author writes this setting so vividly that I could practically see my own breath and my skin was cold. 

Read Alex’s entire review at Goodreads.

Catherine House by Elizabeth Thomas

Catherine House by Elisabeth Thomas

A story about a dangerously curious young undergraduate whose rebelliousness leads her to discover a shocking secret involving an exclusive circle of students . . . and the dark truth beneath her school’s promise of prestige.

You are in the house and the house is in the woods.
You are in the house and the house is in you . . .


Catherine House is a school of higher learning like no other. Hidden deep in the woods of rural Pennsylvania, this crucible of reformist liberal arts study with its experimental curriculum, wildly selective admissions policy, and formidable endowment, has produced some of the world’s best minds: prize-winning authors, artists, inventors, Supreme Court justices, presidents. For those lucky few selected, tuition, room, and board are free. But acceptance comes with a price. Students are required to give the House three years—summers included—completely removed from the outside world. Family, friends, television, music, even their clothing must be left behind. In return, the school promises its graduates a future of sublime power and prestige, and that they can become anything or anyone they desire.

Among this year’s incoming class is Ines, who expects to trade blurry nights of parties, pills, cruel friends, and dangerous men for rigorous intellectual discipline—only to discover an environment of sanctioned revelry. The school’s enigmatic director, Vikt√≥ria, encourages the students to explore, to expand their minds, to find themselves and their place within the formidable black iron gates of Catherine.

For Ines, Catherine is the closest thing to a home she’s ever had, and her serious, timid roommate, Baby, soon becomes an unlikely friend. Yet the House’s strange protocols make this refuge, with its worn velvet and weathered leather, feel increasingly like a gilded prison. And when Baby’s obsessive desire for acceptance ends in tragedy, Ines begins to suspect that the school—in all its shabby splendor, hallowed history, advanced theories, and controlled decadence—might be hiding a dangerous agenda that is connected to a secretive, tightly knit group of students selected to study its most promising and mysterious curriculum. 

Amazon | Goodreads

Emily’s Teaser Review

I would definitely read another book by Elizabeth Thomas, and I hope she writes more weird gothic horror. I would also love if there was a spin-off in this universe!

Read Emily’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.

Monday, December 21, 2020

Q & A with Alexis Henderson | The Year of the Witching

The Ladies of Horror Fiction team is hosting a readalong of The Year of the Witching by Alexis Henderson over on our Goodreads group. The readalong is taking place throughout the month of December so you still have time to join in and discuss it along with us.

We were given the opportunity to send over our burning questions to Alexis Henderson, and she gave us the inside scoop on The Year of the Witching, her process, what she’s reading, and what’s next! Here is what she had to say:

If The Year of the Witching had a playlist, what would be on it?

“Seven Devils” by Florence + the Machine, “Which Witch”, also by Florence + the Machine, “Ain’t No Grave” by Johnny Cash, “God’s Whisper” by Raury, “Freedom” by Beyonc√©, and “Zombie” by The Cranberries to name a few!

Who is your favorite side character?

Immanuelle’s grandmother Vera! I really admire her strength/grit. I often say that I want to be like her when I grow up.

What was it like to publish a book in 2020?

At first, it was daunting, I felt like my book would be lost amid all of the chaos of this year. But I’ve been so surprised by the way people have supported me/my book this year. I have a great team in my corner and so many readers have been enthusiastic, kind, and supportive. So all in all, despite how terrible this year has been, debuting has been a pretty wonderful experience for me.

What is your writing process like?

At this point, I’m not even sure I have a process. I’m not a big outliner so usually I dive into stories headfirst with sort of vague, half-formed ideas about where I envision the story going. But often, what actually ends up on the page is as much a surprise to me as it is to my characters. After I finish the first draft, I do a lot of rewriting and editing to really hone the plot, character arcs, and other elements I may have neglected to refine.

What authors have most influenced your writing?

Probably, Margaret Atwood, N.K. Jemisin, Cormac McCarthy, and Shirley Jackson.

What are you reading right now?

TENDER IS THE FLESH by Agustina Bazterrica. It’s horrific and wonderful. I highly recommend it!

If you can tell us anything, what do you have planned next?

Right now I’m working on THE DAWN OF THE COVEN, the sequel to THE YEAR OF THE WITCHING.

Thank you so much, Alexis, for doing a Q&A with us!

Alexis HendersonAlexis Henderson is a speculative fiction writer with a penchant for dark fantasy, witchcraft, and cosmic horror. She grew up in one of America’s most haunted cities, Savannah, Georgia, which instilled in her a life-long love of ghost stories. When she doesn’t have her nose buried in a book, you can find her painting or watching horror movies with her feline familiar. Currently, Alexis resides in the sun-soaked marshland of Charleston, South Carolina.

Her debut novel THE YEAR OF THE WITCHING will be published by Penguin Random House (US) and Penguin Books (UK) in summer 2020 with a sequel to come in 2021.

The Year of the Witching by Alexis HendersonA young woman living in a rigid, puritanical society discovers dark powers within herself in this stunning, feminist fantasy debut.

In the lands of Bethel, where the Prophet’s word is law, Immanuelle Moore’s very existence is blasphemy. Her mother’s union with an outsider of a different race cast her once-proud family into disgrace, so Immanuelle does her best to worship the Father, follow Holy Protocol, and lead a life of submission, devotion, and absolute conformity, like all the other women in the settlement.

But a mishap lures her into the forbidden Darkwood surrounding Bethel, where the first prophet once chased and killed four powerful witches. Their spirits are still lurking there, and they bestow a gift on Immanuelle: the journal of her dead mother, who Immanuelle is shocked to learn once sought sanctuary in the wood.

Fascinated by the secrets in the diary, Immanuelle finds herself struggling to understand how her mother could have consorted with the witches. But when she begins to learn grim truths about the Church and its history, she realizes the true threat to Bethel is its own darkness. And she starts to understand that if Bethel is to change, it must begin with her.

Amazon | Goodreads


Jen is one of our LOHF admins. Jen manages the technical side of the Ladies of Horror Fiction website. She also keeps a spotlight on middle grade and young adult horror each month.

You can also find Jen on her blog Book Den, Twitter as @bookden, Instagram as @bookdenjen, on Goodreads, and Letterboxd.

Friday, December 18, 2020

#LOHFMovieNights: All the Creatures Were Stirring

On the 1st and 3rd Fridays of the month, we will be hosting watch parties of horror movies starring and/or directed by women!

Tonight at 8 PM EST we are hosting our next #LOHFMovieNights with All the Creatures Were Stirring on Shudder via Scener.

HAVE A MERRY CHRISTMAS!

When an awkward date on Christmas Eve leads a couple into a strange theater, they’re treated to a bizarre and frightening collection of Christmas stories, featuring a wide ensemble of characters doing their best to avoid the horrors of the holidays. From boring office parties and last-minute shopping, to vengeful stalkers and immortal demons, there’s plenty out there to fear this holiday season.

Visit us on @lohfiction Twitter 15 minutes before the movie to get the link or DM @ladiesofhorrorfiction on Instagram.

Please note you must have an account on Shudder to join in. For more information on using Scener, visit the Help with Scener site.

We hope to see you tonight!


Jen is one of our LOHF admins. Jen manages the technical side of the Ladies of Horror Fiction website. She also keeps a spotlight on middle grade and young adult horror each month.

You can also find Jen on her blog Book Den, Twitter as @bookden, Instagram as @bookdenjen, on Goodreads, and Letterboxd.

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Author Spotlight: Madeleine Swann

Please join us in welcoming Madeleine Swann to Ladies of Horror Fiction! Team member Tracy was excited to ask Madeleine some great questions and we think you will dig the answers!

Madeleine Swann’s novella, The Vine That Ate The Starlet, was published by Filthy Loot. Her collection, Fortune Box (Eraserhead Press), was nominated for a Wonderland Award. Her short stories have appeared in various anthologies and podcasts including Splatterpunk Award nominated The New Flesh: A David Cronenberg Tribute.

LOHF: Please tell the readers a bit about your most recent release, the novella The Vine that Ate the Starlet. Most enjoyable part of writing? Favorite characters?

Madeleine Swann: New York in the 1920s has been overrun by man eating plants called Vines, and gossip columnist Dolly Preston finds a young actress dead in their clutches. Something tells her there’s more to the story and she’s embroiled in a mystery of doomed starlets, cults and an overzealous immigration bureau.

I love the 1920s and watch silent films a lot, so it was great to put all the research I’ve done over the years to use. I used the characters in a short story quite a while ago, which is on my youtube channel, and definitely want to revisit them again at a later date.

LOHF: Did you find that releasing a new book during the current pandemic presented unique challenges? Was there anything about the release you did differently and enjoyed?

MS: Myself and the other British Bizarros (a loose group of UK based weird writers) were going to do readings in bookshops, read/perform at Edgelit convention, stay in Whitby for a writer’s retreat and all these other plans but, of course, the pandemic happened and everything changed. 

It was certainly a quieter release than initially imagined, but I’m really proud of the book and everyone who’s read it seems to like it, so I can’t really ask for more.

LOHF: You previously released a collection, Fortune Box, how was the experience different writing a novella versus short stories?

MS: Working on an outline is absolutely necessary for me to keep the story in some kind of shape, that’s certainly different. I could never be a 100 per cent ‘pantser,’ the idea terrifies me! Also I think I found the fact that I’d already written about the characters useful, it sharpened them in my head. It might be an idea to write a paragraph or two about characters in future, for me anyway.

LOHF: Readers often reach out to short stories to “try out” a new author. Where are some other places we can find your shorter fiction?

MS: The New Flesh: A David Cronenberg Tribute was nominated for a splatterpunk award which I was very excited about. However, if you’d like to try a free one first, here’s Fingerprints on the Blind Tour on Tales of What: https://play.acast.com/s/talesofwhat/s1.4fingerprintsontheblindtour

Suckle His Poison on The Wicked Library: https://thewickedlibrary.com/809/

Three stories on this episode of The Wicked Library: https://thewickedlibrary.com/705/

The C Word on The Other Stories: http://www.theotherstories.org/episodes/episode-86-the-c-word-by-madeleine-swann/

And All She Needs on Gallery of Curiosities: https://gallerycurious.com/2019/11/05/86-all-she-needs-by-madeleine-swann/

LOHF: Speaking of short stories, tell us a bit about what it’s like to publish something surrounded by the work of others, versus your own stand alone collection. 

MS: I love seeing my stories alongside people who are really, brilliantly talented, but I am very proud of Fortune Box. The whole thing is my weird and silly brain from start to finish and it’s great.

LOHF: Your stories seem to be an eclectic mix of bizarro and horror.  Do you have a particular favorite, or even an intersection of genres, that you prefer to work with? Or is there perhaps a genre you haven’t played with and would love to?

MS: I tend to view my work as weird in general. I’m not sure ‘weird in general’ is going to catch on as a genre title but I try not to worry about whether something is bizarro, horror or just weird, and tell the story how I think it should be told. Although I often find myself published by bizarro presses, I’m not hugely worried about what bizarro is.

LOHF: Here at Ladies of Horror Fiction, we want to know what women/non-binary femme authors have inspired you throughout the years? 

MS: Dorothy Parker and Leonora Carrington are probably my two main influences, along with Elsa Von Freytag-Loringhoven. They lived how they wanted and made a lot of noise doing it. 

LOHF: To mix it up a little, what have been some of your favorite books or movies that you have read/watched this year? Publication date does not matter. 

MS: I just finished Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia and loved it. It’s got everything, all the gothic tropes, without being cliche at all, and it’s full of vintage fashion. Apparently it’s going to be a series and I can’t wait. I also really enjoyed A Spectral Hue by Laurence Gidney – art, magical paintings and weird stuff, all the right ingredients! And finally – do I even need to say this? – if you haven’t seen Community or Better call Saul do it, do it now. 

LOHF: Let’s tackle advice – tell us the best advice you’ve received regarding the world of writing, publishing, and public relations? 

MS: Honestly the only advice I could give is to be wary of most advice and always be polite to those you come into contact with. We’re all in this together and everything is so much easier when we’re being nice to each other.

LOHF: What’s up next for Madeleine Swann? Do you have any upcoming works?

MS: I’ve got some short stories coming out, including the Twisted Anatomy anthology, and I’ll be starting a new novella before Christmas. My husband and I also tell each other stories (and make each other laugh) on our podcast Bildie’s Bizarro Bedtime Exciting!

You can find Madeleine Swann at the following links: 

madeleineswann.com

https://twitter.com/MadeleineSwann

https://www.youtube.com/c/MissMadeleineSwann

Tracy is the face behind our Ladies of Horror Fiction Twitter account! You can also find Tracy at Sci-Fi & Scary, on twitter as @tracy_reads79, on Instagram as @tracy_reads79 and on Goodreads.

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

What We're Reading #75

We’re back with our review round-up featuring three recommendations we know you’re going to adore!

Don’t forget to click either tag above to find more good books ♥

Tender is the Flesh by Agustina Bazterrica

Tender Is The Flesh by Agustina Bazterrica

Working at the local processing plant, Marcos is in the business of slaughtering humans —though no one calls them that anymore.

His wife has left him, his father is sinking into dementia, and Marcos tries not to think too hard about how he makes a living. After all, it happened so quickly. First, it was reported that an infectious virus has made all animal meat poisonous to humans. Then governments initiated the “Transition.” Now, eating human meat—“special meat”—is legal. Marcos tries to stick to numbers, consignments, processing.

Then one day he’s given a gift: a live specimen of the finest quality. Though he’s aware that any form of personal contact is forbidden on pain of death, little by little he starts to treat her like a human being. And soon, he becomes tortured by what has been lost—and what might still be saved. 

Amazon | Goodreads

Audra’s Teaser Review

This is a timely, and perhaps timeless, novel.

Read Audra’s entire review at Goodreads.

The Night She Fell by Jennifer Soucy

Falling in love or falling into darkness? For some, it’s the same journey.

Coralena del Prado wishes to become a witch like her mama, but her ancestral magic still hasn’t activated. She fears she’ll be stuck forever as Mama’s assistant at Cornucopia, their Mediterranean cafe located in Greenwich, the home of Connecticut’s elite. But all that changes when a mysterious man from their past returns, sparking more than Cori’s late-blooming magic.

Hayden Colburn, Greenwich’s elusive bachelor prince, fled his life of privilege to become a restaurateur in nearby New York City. He’s everything Cori wants and, after one brilliant night, she’s ready to surrender. Until Mama shares a secret about the Colburns which shatters their peaceful home and Cori’s dreams of love.

Evil lurks beneath Greenwich, spawned by the Colburns and their powerful friends. Mama begs her to stay away, but Cori can’t ignore their crimes. She plans a sneak attack, armed with only her temperamental magic—a power made volatile by her conflicting emotions for Hayden, a man she’s sworn to hate who stubbornly fights to win her heart.

Cori vows to destroy her mother’s enemies. She’ll weaponize her magic even if the act shatters every natural law, a sacrilege which might damn her soul. But none of that matters if it means saving her beloved mother from a pack of humans more wicked than any mythological monster.

Amazon | Goodreads

Alex’s Teaser Review

I thoroughly enjoyed this story! It has a great blend of so many elements: witchy, horror, romance, sexy (ooh la la!), mystery, etc. I tore through this book because I couldn’t stand not knowing what would happen to Cori, her mama, Hayden, his family, etc. 

Read Alex’s entire review at Goodreads.

Crossroads by Laurel Hightower

Crossroads by Laurel Hightower

How far would you go to bring back someone you love?

When Chris’s son dies in a tragic car crash, her world is devastated. The walls of grief close in on Chris’s life until, one day, a small cut on her finger changes everything.

A drop of blood falls from Chris’s hand onto her son’s roadside memorial and, later that night, Chris thinks she sees his ghost outside her window. Only, is it really her son’s ghost, or is it something else—something evil?

Soon Chris is playing a dangerous game with forces beyond her control in a bid to see her son, Trey, alive once again.

Amazon | Goodreads

Emily’s Teaser Review

Crossroads is the second book I’ve read by Laurel Hightower, and she tells such good horror stories. Crossroads is a grief horror novella, and I think fans of books like Remains by Andrew Cull, Suffer the Children by Craig DiLouie, and Grief is a False God by Gemma Amor should definitely pick this up.

Read Emily’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.

LinkWithin