Friday, 6 July 2018
Something Borrowed, Something Blood-soaked by Christa Carmen
I first came across Christa Carmen is issue 5 of Unnerving magazine with her short tale, The Red Room. It really stood out to me amongst the others and I thought here's a new voice in horror. So obviously I jumped at the chance to get a sneak peak at her upcoming debut collection Something Borrowed, Something Blood-soaked.
With this collection of tales she does not disappoint. I had a lot of fun reading through this.There are thirteen tales inside and not one of them was a dud. Stand out tales for me include; Lady of the Flies, The Girl Who Loved Bruce Campbell, This Our Angry Train and Souls Dark and Deep. Although they are all very good!
There's a lot to like about this collection, not only can Christa Carmen entertain you for a few hours with dark tales they are also really thought provoking and stay with you long afterwards. Her stories delve deep into all forms of darkness, the grit of human depravities and the things which no mortal can explain. You get the sense that Christa has lived many lives.
A lot of people say that monsters aren't creatures which creep at night but they're amongst us and very much human as illustrated in Wolves at the Door and Bears in the Forest. This tale really stood out for me. The tale of a young mother trying to create a better life for her daughter but everything is stacked against her, even the people who's job it is to help.
Each of these stories are really different but equally compelling. I can't say there was one I didn't enjoy. Some of them made for uncomfortable reading with their darkness but it's a collection I really love. I can't wait for more from Christa Carmen. This is a really exciting time for Women in Horror!
Thanks to Hook of a Book for allowing me a sneaky preview before the official release date in August 2018
About the Author
Christa Carmen's short fiction has appeared in Fireside Fiction Company, Unnerving Magazine, Comet Press' Year's Best Hardcore Horror, Volume 2, Outpost 28 Issue #2, Third Flatiron's Strange Beasties, Alban Lake Publishing's Only the Lonely, DarkFuse Magazine, Tales to Terrify, Ghost Parachute, Black Ice Magazine Volume 2, Dead Oaks' Horror Anthology Podcast, Horror Hill (Chilling Tales for Dark Nights / The Simply Scary Podcast Network), Weasel Press' The Haunted Traveler, Mad Scientist Journal, The Eunoia Review, Blood Moon Rising, Danse Macabre, Wolfsinger Publications' Just Desserts, DreamFusion Press' The Book of the Macabre, Devolution Z Horror Magazine, The J.J. Outré Review, Prolific Press' Jitter, Literally Stories, Fiction on the Web, Corner Bar Magazine, pennyshorts, Anotherealm, and Dark Fire Fiction. In 2016, "Four Souls of Eve" was published by Frith Books as a standalone eBook. Her work won Best in Genre, Thriller/Horror, in wordhaus' 2016 Trick or Treat Fall Story Contest and “The Goblin’s Abettor” won The Haberdasher’s Monster Mash Slash Fiction Contest in 2017.
Christa has additional work forthcoming from Outpost 28 Issue #3, Quantum Corsets' Her Dark Voice 2, & Space Squid. Her debut fiction collection, "Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked," will be released in August 2018 by Unnerving.
Christa lives in Westerly, Rhode Island with her husband and a beagle who rivals her in stubbornness. She has a bachelor's degree from the University of Pennsylvania in English and psychology, and a master's degree from Boston College in counseling psychology. She is currently pursuing a Master of Liberal Arts in Creative Writing & Literature from Harvard Extension School. Christa works for Pfizer in Clinical Trial Packaging, and at a local hospital as a mental health clinician. When she's not writing, she is volunteering with one of several organizations that aim to maximize public awareness and seek solutions to the ever-growing opioid crisis in southern RI and southeastern CT.