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The Last Final Girl

3.7 of 5 stars 3.70  ·  rating details  ·  137 ratings  ·  39 reviews
"The Last Final Girl is like Quentin Tarantino's take on The Cabin in the Woods. Bloody, absurd, and smart. Plus, there's a killer in a Michael Jackson mask." - Carlton Mellick III, author of Apeshit

Life in a slasher film is easy. You just have to know when to die.

Aerial View: A suburban town in Texas. Everyone's got an automatic garage door opener. All the kids jump off a
Paperback, 216 pages
Published September 22nd 2012 by Lazy Fascist
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 379)
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David Keaton
This review is apt to be a bit bias, as this is what usually happens when readers becomes delusional enough to think a novel was written specifically for them. That's the case here though, as Mr. Jones has crafted a book so far up inside the head of a horror movie fan that its likely to read like Morse Code to a civilian. Their confusion is their loss though because something very unique is happening with this narrative, something that will likely be misinterpreted as an attempt to half-novelize ...more
Dec 01, 2014 David rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Jason, Freddy, Michael, Norman, Leatherface, Jamie Lee Curtis
For anyone who watched waaaaay too many slasher flicks in the 80s and 90s, this book is a cyclopedic homage to every movie Jamie Lee Curtis ever starred in, every Jason, Michael, and Freddy, every sorority house and boy scout camp and cabin in the woods. I watched a lot of those movies as a teen, but Stephen Graham Jones must have a DVD collection to raise Vincent Price from the grave. I probably only caught two-thirds of the references.

The story is, of course, a slasher flick. With a twist.

Ross Lockhart
A meta-textual homage to the slasher flicks of the 80s with an encyclopedic understanding of the genre's tropes, Stephen Graham Jones's The Last Final Girl out-references such films as Scream and Cabin in the Woods through virtuoso literary technique, cinematic jump cuts, dizzying POV shifts, buckets of blood, and a tongue planted firmly in cheek. As stylish as it is grotesque, The Last Final Girl is a campy, absurdist fright-fest, with rival final girls jockeying for survivor status, small-town ...more
Boden Steiner
May 08, 2014 Boden Steiner rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: horror slasher movie fans with
Cabin in the Woods was certainly cool for any horror fan, but I'd rather have my winks and nudges self-aware, yet played dramatically straight. Horror for the horror audience, and in this case, a slasher to stand on the shoulders of every slasher, on top of it, perhaps allowing the mask to come off a bit, but, in the subtext of that, revealing that our modern life, steeped in trivia and the realities created by our pop culture passions (demons), is self-aware, but can still prove to be a very fl ...more
Steve Lowe
Very good meta-romp of a novel disguised as a slasher film, chock full of nods to classic horror slashers, and some inventive verbs that movie fans will appreciate (like: the killer "Hoddering" after his victim). The style is unique and rather like reading a screenplay, but that has its limitations in that the narrative seemed to lack characterization while also speeding a bit too fast through scenes. I had to re-read a couple parts to get the mental image. It took a bit to adjust to the style, ...more
Simon Logan
Gah, I really wanted to like this one but in the end I lost the battle.

I can understand why Jones went for the stylistic approach of giving it a cinematic feel and after an initial struggle I began to find my way with it however in the end I found that the style got in the way of me connecting to and enjoying the book, rather than having it enhance the story.

I got about 1/2 the way through before giving up and I may well return to it in the future.
Orrin Grey
This isn't necessarily Stephen's best book, and I missed the footnotes from Demon Theory, but it feels in a lot of ways like the book he was born to write, the book he's been training for all this time. At once quicker and more effortless than Demon Theory, it uses the same film-treatment-as-novel format to create the ultimate meta-slasher, something that is at once a perfect slasher novel and the perfect deconstruction of slasher stories, at once more traditional and more clever than the movies ...more
i'm a fan of stephen graham jones and the way he seems to seamlessly combine a script format to a regular novel format. it's always a blast to read because it reads quick and makes you feel as though you're right there in the action and not at home reading the action. it's a way to make moments actually fearful and filled with tension.
this book doesn't disappoint in that regard. i need a quick read because i just don't have the time to deal with the bullshit books that come out these days, fille
M Griffin
Told at the full-tilt pace of a teen slasher pic, The Last Final Girl by Stephen Graham Jones effectively conveys the author's love and respect for the form. Divided up into very short bites, like a movie is divided into shots of a few seconds each, the story proceeds at a rapid clip, with none of the typical novel's digressions or introspection. It's something like 90% dialog, interspersed with tags almost like shorthand, describing character actions.

The slasher is probably one of the most str
Sigh. I was expecting to love this but I just couldn't. The style it's written in, like some others mention, makes it difficult. And before you think I'm just not familiar enough with different styles/formats of fiction, allow me to let you down easy. I went to several screenwriting courses after graduating. The movie biz wasn't for me but I'm apt at reading scripts and scene descriptions. This should have been a breeze for me.

Instead of finding it interesting though, I just found it difficult.
I should have liked this, but the author made it unbearable to enjoy.

The first stumbling block is the text's presented. Little arrows, camera direction such as 'we pan over/zoom in, from character X's POV' - it reads like a screenplay with an extra sentence of description. Not only is it jarring, but it leaps around so much with jumpcuts that anyone without ADHD is going to get whiplash. Even more confusingly, you will have two characters' dialogue in the same paragraph. But fine, let's just cho
I need more Stephen Graham Jones. His books read like movies, complete with casting and sound track. This is the kind of slasher flick I wish would make it to the big screen. Will someone hurry up and adapt it?
A fast, dizzying novel that's a slasher movie script, with players who know all the rules, and break them and rewrite them, and expose them, and like the best traditional tragedies, succumb to them.
Emilie Pagano
Perhaps the worst book I've ever read.
Eric Juneau
I was practically glomping all over the starting pages. It's so genre-savvy, it hurts. The basic premise is "What happens to Alice after Friday the 13th?" (assuming no Friday the 13th Part 2). It hosts a cast of potential Final Girls living through the sequel, waiting for the killer to strike again, full of fake-outs and jump scares. Everyone's anticipating the slasher's return, but is the slasher really the one they need to worry about?

The problem was once it got past the initial prologue, it g
Hannah Stoutenburg
This is, hands down, the biggest reading disappointment for me of the last few years. When a book is so unanimously loved by reviewers and compared so often to Cabin in the Woods, I expected it to be a lot better.

One of the hardest things about this book was the narrative style. It works like a film, cutting away for effect, sometimes ending a scene mid-sentence. We're treated to the image of somebody hammering a sword, masks floating in the water, and newspaper clippings. Close-ups, POV images
I was looking forward to this book but I was left utterly down by it. The premise itself is great. Story starts right in the last moments of the slasher finale where the last girl finally wins over menacing killer in a Michael Jackson mask. Then we move right on to the sequel.

That's right. This book is meta slasher horror where author uses all the tropes and tools of this genre of movies. It's also filled with tremendous amount of references and quotes. More slashers you seen and remember the mo
The best part of this book is the quality of the paper it is printed on, it's excellent quality. There isn't much of a positive to it besides that.

This book is written like a screenplay, except, it isn't. Imagine a person who, while watching a movie, paused it constantly to write down exactly what happened. This involves camera movements, whose POV the camera is meant to be representing, what a certain look or perspective is meant to imply to the viewer. That's how this book is presented. It's l
Melanie Page
If you don't care about horror films (especially slashers), you won't appreciate this book at all.


The camera cuts, demonstrated with an arrow and paragraph break, tells us where to "look," as if this was a movie. However, if you're a fan of slashers, you know that you often yell at the TV and wonder why people do things (like repeat names awkwardly, notice certain details, end up in certain places). The book format allows the narrator to comment on what we're probably thinking, bringing you int
No! Come on, Stephen Graham Jones! I was so hoping that this was going to be a clever Cabin in the Woods type thing, and I don't even know what it's actually trying to be! Everything was so perfect... the plot on the back cover, the reviews, the artwork, the title... and then I go ahead and actually read the book and it lets me down. It wasn't scary, the characters were completely faceless and static, the outcome was predictable, the storytelling was distracting, and I never got attached to any ...more
Ryan Willox
I think I wanted to like this more than I actually did. Having said that I flew through it in a few hours. It reads like a screenplay, which I guess is the point but it's honest in its intentions and if you go with it there is really nothing not to like.
It's like every slasher movie you ever saw except it knows you've seen them and knows just what you want. And gives it to you. Can't say fairer than that.
The 'final girl' is likeable enough to spend a couple hundred pages with, there are enough r
Alex Aloise
Structured and written like a movie, it's a cool concept, but the constant jumps make it hard to keep up at certain parts. I'd watch the movie though.
FSU Alumni
Sep 25, 2014 FSU Alumni added it
Shelves: fsu-alumni
Stephen Graham Jones (Ph.D. '98)
David Cluck
Arrogant without cause.
Kyle Mares
like his great book 'demon theory,' 'the last final girl' says something new and unique about the slasher films so entwined with its creative dna. jones comes alive when his lifetime of horror film-viewing fuels each sentence and plot twist, and the innovative prose-screenplay amalgam he writes in here kept every sense engaged while reading and will keep me sleeping with a light on for the next few nights. amazingly fun read!
This is a bit of wry, postmodern horror from Stephen Graham Jones, a Texas author who is the toast of Native American fiction and horror fiction circles alike. His specific preoccupation with the slasher genre and its 80s heyday makes for an interesting read, but sometimes, his style of writing (movie treatment format rather than straight prose, at least in this novel) can detract from the mood he sets up.
Slasher flick parody. Unfortunately, it's neither funny, nor tense. It does successfully evoke the paper-thin characterizations and absurd nonsense plotting of the genre, and it's very aware of genre conventions and aims at film-like story-building via cuts, montage sequences, etc. I guess someone could enjoy it for those reasons, but that someone isn't me.
Ross Helford
I dunno, Stephen Graham Jones might disagree with this, but I so so prefer reading my horror movies than watching them, especially when SGJ is doing the writing. A dark, twisted, wickedly funny, infinitely clever, sensationally written slasher flick novel.
John Popa
An absurdist riff on the conventions of slasher horror, "The Last Final Girl" is written to be the most insane horror screenplay never written. In most cases it works. While probably impenetrable to anyone who wasn't bred on slasher horror, to those of us who were, the book comes off as a chaotic late night conversation about some impending slasher sequel.
Brian Sammons
A good book, but I found it to be too much like Scream and not enough like Halloween, Black Christmas, Friday the 13th, My Bloody Valentine, and other earlier classics that put slashers on the map. Still it was an enjoyable and at time a very funny read. My full review can be found here:
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Stephen Graham Jones is the author of eight novels and two collections. Stephen's been a Shirley Jackson Award finalist three times, a Bram Stoker Award finalist, a Black Quill Award finalist, an International Horror Guild finalist, a Colorado Book Award Finalist, a Texas Monthly Book Selection, and has won the Texas Institute of Letters Award for Fiction and the Independent Publishers Award for M ...more
More about Stephen Graham Jones...
Demon Theory Growing Up Dead in Texas All the Beautiful Sinners The Ones That Got Away It Came from Del Rio

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