Cover Image: Women in Horror Anthology

Women in Horror Anthology

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As a Horror fan, I was really excited about this one. Unfortunately, I had to give it up 40% into it since I felt like this reading it was pointless. The short stories were extremely short. Most stories were not even scary. Big disappointment. 

I still gave it a 2-star because a couple of stories were good and have a potential to be turned into full-blown novels. 

Thank you Net Galley and Twisted Wing Production for this e-ARC in exchange for a honest review.
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I wa as thrilled to see not only a horror anthology but especially one that was a horror anthology written by women. Overall the stories were entertaining and would be great for fans of horror. Some of the stories really creeped me out, and some were more gory than others. Like many anthologies, some of the stories will speak to you more than others. I think fans of true horror will find this to be right up their alley and should definitely read this.
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Overall, these stories were quite entertaining. Although I enjoyed some stories more than others, it was a solid collection and I would recommend it to people that enjoy horror.
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Anthologies are usually a lot of fun for me. I love that authors can create within the confines of the short story. I was expecting Strange Girls to be similar to Betty Bites Back, a female-centric feminist anthology that I recently read. Betty Bites Back featured women who were fed up with the misogyny of the system and were "biting back". Azzurra Nox, who selected all the stories in Strange Girls, also had a story featured in Betty Bites Back. 

Unfortunately, while I enjoyed all of the stories in Betty Bites Back—albeit some more than others—I did not find the stories in Strange Girls to be equal to the task. While the stories did all feature girls or women and did all have elements of horror, they appeared a bit disjointed and didn't follow any other common theme. 

It almost seemed, in most, that the main character was male, and the female character took more of a backseat. In 24 Hour Diner by Charlotte Platt, the male character lead most of the plot, at least until the very end. In Self-Portrait with Pears, again the male character is the one with the point of view. Too many of the stories also portrayed the female character as the victim, most succinctly The Eyes of the Dead by Danielle R. Bailey with its trigger warnings of violence, not to mention necrophilia. I didn't feel any sense of empowerment in the tone of most of the stories. While Personal Demons, where a high school non-binary person is befriended by a succubus, should have been, the conclusion left me dissatisfied. 

My favorites were Night Terrors by Angela Sylvaine and Extinguishing Fireflies by Rebecca Rowland. Night Terrors being remarkable sci-fi horror and well, Extinguishing Fireflies has a very unique kitten. Patterns of Faerytales by Azzurra Nox was another fun read built on the legend of the selkie. And yet two out of the three, are still portraying the female character at the mercy of others. 

While there's no denying that all of the stories fit the "Strange Girl" horror needed for the anthology, I was hoping for more.
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Anthologies are either hot or miss for me. There are some talented authors in this book ambit some of the stories fell really flat and dragged it down.
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I really picky with short stories and I must admit this anthology is pretty good. I enjoyed most of the stories and I liked how the monster is processed - monster girls or the monster in the man/patriarchal society for example.
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I picked this up one day when I was having trouble focusing on anything long form. At this point I am 5 days into "social distancing" for the COVID-19 break out. (I hope that some day reading that sentence will sound foreign and strange, but right now in the middle, everyone will know exactly what that means) Anway, I needed something short enough that I wouldn't have to devote a lot of attention to it, but also something utterly distracting. This collection did not let me down. This is definitely a great collection for feminists who enjoy something a little spooky.
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I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.   Thank you NetGalley.
 
I was SO excited for this book...   but ultimately.... it fell flat for me. 
There are extremely talented authors in this anthology, and that's part of why i wanted to read this so badly.
Sideshow was one of my favorites.. dark and held my interest the entire time.
The girl Who never stopped bleeding- amazing. 
Cracked - i  adore stories about dolls ... so this was a hit. 
Blood - was one of my .. least favorites..  it was missing a lot...
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24 Hour Diner - Seductive and steamy, though it suffers from confusing storytelling at points.
Sideshow - Dark, horrifying, and unrestrained in its subject matter. One of my favorites.
The Doll's House - Okay, but falls short of its potential through inadequate information and a handful of grammatical/syntax errors.
Blood - Too short and undeveloped to really evoke anything within me, unfortunately.
Self-Portrait with Pears - Also just an "okay" - had difficulty understanding the direction.
Personal Demons - The current politics and LGBT rep were nice touches, though there were some grammar/syntax mistakes as well.
Friends with Benefits - Quite chilling, truth be told.
Night Terrors - The sci-fi twist is a huge yes, and I really like Ana. Another one of my favorites.
The Girl Who Never Stopped Bleeding - Short and personal, with very dark implications.
Leda and the Fly - Topical and blunt. Another favorite.
Jenny's Bobo - I started off not finding much intrigue in it, but that last paragraph made up for it.
Extinguishing Fireflies - Felines and murder complemented by a fitting prose style. Yet another favorite.
The Eyes of the Dead - Not for the faint of heart (please heed the trigger warning at the beginning), that's for sure. Unfortunately, the messy writing detracted from the overall experience, but the tale was still horrifying.
My Mirror Wife - Confusing to follow due to multiple POVs, but quite intriguing nonetheless.
Patterns of Faerytales - I didn't see the twist coming! One of my other favorites.
Campfire Tales: The Bloody Rings - Exactly what it says on the tin, though it didn't really work for me.
Cracked - Another horror story about dolls. I didn't find much new in it, but it was scary in its own way!
Angel of Death - Fantasy-horror with religious influences. With its vivid imagery and topical relentlessness, it's probably my favorite from the overall collection.
Her Garden Grows - It didn't make sense to me at all.
Revival - Intriguing and relevant, if not a bit hard to follow.
A Song Only She Can Hear - Mystically frightening. Another favorite.
Tribal Influence - The final story in the collection is timely and political, and I can call it a favorite as well.

Overall: this collection consisted mostly of definite hits and definite misses, but there's likely something in it for a lot of different types of horror fans.
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Thank you for the opportunity to read and review this book!

I was unfortunately underwhelmed with this. I love horror and understand the age demographics. However, I felt like the stories themselves were too short and much fo the writing was very similar considering many authors collaborated with this work. I love that women writers are writing about women in horror, and am absolutely interested in reading other anthologies like this one. This was sadly just not for me.
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Through the entire book made me want to read an entire novel of each short story. I am not the biggest fan of Horror but these stories truly made me feel things I haven't before about Horror. I have started to push myself out of the box and I think that this novel truly helped. Also the fact that these are all amazing woman writing all these amazing short stories truly make me happy to be a woman!
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Thank you to the publishers and Netgalley for my copy to review and read.

TW: rape

When I read the synopsis of this anthology I was really excited about it because i love horror and i like when its focused on women but this anthology fell really short for me. I wanted to review each story separately but nothing was really that scary or unnerving to be honest. I honestly didnt even get very far. I had to stop at 20% because it felt like I really had to force myself to read the stories and pay attention to them. Some of the stories didnt really make sense either. It's like some of them should have had more story to go along with it and others was just all over the place like the the authors were just trying to rush through it. One of the stories I did read did mention rape as a subject. That story just made me happy with how it ended. The guy got what he deserved. I think their is another story in that talks about rape too but I'm not sure.
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**Thank you to NetGalley and Twisted Wing Productions for a free e-copy of Strange Girls in exchange for an honest review.**

I really, really wanted to like this anthology. Unfortunately, it just fell short for me. A majority of the stories were mediocre at best and not even very scary or creepy. There were also quite a few typos and grammatical errors throughout. Such a bummer!
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I had hoped that there’d be something I’d really enjoy in this anthology, but really didn’t find any of the stories to be scary or unnerving or anything like that. The authors tend to use flowery language, and don’t manage to gain my interest in what’s going on in the various stories. There was no unnerving feelings or feelings of unease. It felt like a slog to read through the stories.
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When I saw this book I thought I would give anthologies a try.
I always wondered how short stories could be fun to read, as it was so short.
I gave this book a fair try, but I had to force myself to continue reading.
It is not the stories that are not interesting, but that I don't like the stories to be so short.
I feel like I'm just reading random scenes from bigger books, and it makes me uneasy that this is all there is to the story. But at least now I know anthologies aren't really my thing.
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This series immediately caught my eye for two reasons. 

1. Women in horror. 
2. Women writing women in horror. 

This book is an anthology of horror stories all circulating women. It has amazing potential, the syntax lacks in a few chapters, but the story is well fleshed out and most of them had me hanging on the edge of my seat. 

All these women writers are extremely talented and differentiate from each other so diversely that you can tell that you’re meant to be reading an anthology. 

Amazing book series. I can’t wait for the rest.
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I read the first four stories in this book and while they weren't the worst thing I've ever read I don't think they were very good either and they don't really make me want to finish this anthology. From what I saw with the first few stories they seem very unfinished and are also the kind of stories that focus on some kind of trauma or sexual assault and then have the woman get revenge for it later. I'm sure some women find this kind of thing empowering but I would rather not have to deal with sexual assault in every story I'm reading. That combined with none of them really being particularly scary or creative made me DNF this anthology after four stories.
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As with any anthology there will be some stories you love, some you find "just ok" and others you end up skimming just to get through them and Women in Horror is no exception. Overall, this is a very worthwhile collection and anything that promotes women's voices in the horror genre should be championed.
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Thank you to the publisher and NetGalley for allowing me to provide a review of this ARC.

Not gonna lie, when this first started out, I was feeling very uneasy about whether or not this was an anthology I would enjoy. After encountering a few duds early on, I finally began to enjoy myself. This anthology consists of 22 short stories, and I notated 12 as ones I particularly liked. In no particular order, these are the ones I found enjoyable:

Self-portrait with Pears
Night Terrors
Leda and the Fly
Jenny's Bobo
Extinguishing Fireflies
The Eyes of the Dead
My Mirror Wife
Patterns of Faerytales
Campfire Tales: The Bloody Rings
Cracked
Angel of Death
Tribal Influence

I know the importance of reading female authors in the horror genre, so am very grateful to have had the opportunity to read this.

Also...that cover is swoon-worthy.
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There were a lot of standout stories in this anthology with a few that fell a bit flat or seemed tone deaf to the idea of Strange Girls. However, overall it was a great collection, many of the stories left me having to put the book down for a few hours before I could let go and move on to the next one.

Hightlights for me were Night Terrors by Angela Sylvaine, Sideshow by June Reid and Tribal Influence by Erica Ruhe. Honorable mention to My Mirror Wife by Ash Tudor for the kind of story that will keep me away from mirrors for a while.
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