A rare non-fiction review for you today! Monster, She Wrote takes a fun but informative look at the legacy of female science fiction and horror writers across history.
Book: Monster, She Wrote by Lisa Kroger and Melanie R Anderson
Read before: No
Ownership: Proof copy given free of charge at an event by the publisher. All opinions my own.
This book would be an excellent introduction to the work of female spec-fic writers for those totally new to the genre, but also has plenty of detail and reading suggestions for those who are already fairly knowledgeable. It’s written in an informal, chatty style that makes it really easy to read, and is separated into multiple sections so you can dip in and out at your leisure. There are overarching categories, but the book moves largely chronologically, offering biographies and bibliographies of both major and minor players in the horror and sci-fi scene, from the 17th century right up to the modern day, as well as sections that dive into the popularity of certain tropes, whether that’s haunted houses, serial killers, or the modern vampire resurgence. It’s such a full overview that I defy you not to come away with a list of recommendations!
Aesthetically, it’s a very pretty book that would make a lovely gift – it’s heavily illustrated throughout with black and white drawings by Natalya Balnova, and there are lots of inset sections with quotes from books mentioned, or asides (aptly embedded in tombstone-shaped areas). It’s definitely a book that will hold your attention and make you want to read the works they talk about!
If your 2020 resolution is to read more classic female spec-fic authors but you’re not sure where to start, this book would give you a fantastic start, and if you’re interested in the history of a fascinating genre, this is ideal. Four out of five cats!