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She Said Destroy

4.20  ·  Rating details ·  247 ratings  ·  57 reviews
Word Horde presents the debut collection from critically-acclaimed Weird Fiction author Nadia Bulkin. Dreamlike, poignant, and unabashedly socio-political, She Said Destroy includes three stories nominated for the Shirley Jackson Award, four included in Year’s Best anthologies, and one original tale.
Paperback, 258 pages
Published August 20th 2017 by Word Horde
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Average rating 4.20  · 
Rating details
 ·  247 ratings  ·  57 reviews

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Sadie Hartmann Mother Horror
What I'm about to say may or may not be true but it's truth to me from my perspective, so I'm willing to say this with confidence: Horror is a man's world. I find that most horror books are written by men. Earlier this year, I found Ania Ahlborn and I was just beside myself with enthusiasm for her books. It felt good to get behind the sisterhood in this genre.
Now, full on into my own, personal Season of Horror (#seasonofhorror on Twitter & Instagram) I have discovered more female authors!
Aug 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
I had the honor of writing an introduction to this book. It's one of the best collections of this any other year. There is no other writer like Nadia working today and her socio-political horror stories will knock you on your butt. I would not steer you wrong. Well, I might, but not this time, I promise.
Aug 12, 2017 marked it as to-read
This book came with a signed book plate signed by Nadia Bulkin.
Jul 10, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lena by: Spells, Space & Screams BOM
Shelves: horror, collection
Only Unity Saves the Damned ★★★★☆
"Roz was kneeling by then, in deference and fear. When Lark’s screams finally stopped, she knew that it was her turn."
Feels like Nadia Bulkin is as big a fan of The Fountain as I.

Here she’s domesticated it, added a little Blair Witch Project mockumentary and an urban legend that sounds like the Cut Wife from Penny Dreadful.

It would have been better with three to five pages of domestic doldrums and disappointments cut and maybe an additional page of the othe
Rachel (TheShadesofOrange)
Sep 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: review-copy, horror
4.0 Stars - Video Review:
She Said Destroy is like nothing I have ever read before. This collection defies genre. Avoiding the usual conventions of the horror genre, many of the stories read like weird fiction. Bulkin identifies her work as socio-political horror, which is probably the best description for this unique collection. These are certainly not your typical horror stories.

This collection is a wonderful example of diverse horror fiction. As a female author, B
Oct 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Generals eating bullets to increase their power. Accidents turning towns into cemeteries. Anonymous dead maids impersonating ghosts of war criminals.

All this and more is in She Said Destroy, the remarkable debut collection of Nadia Bulkin brought by Word Horde. Even if Bulkin stays in the weird horror territory, she uses it frequently to deal with social and political issues, as in the striking opener “Intertropical Convergence Zone”, the ironic take on the haunted house narrative in “Endless l
Leo Robertson
Nov 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Finished re-read today—review stands :D

This collection kicks aaaaasss!!

I will definitely be returning to a handful of these stories to learn how Bulkin did it.

(FUCK: There's not a lot of reviews for this book yet. Ms Bulkin, if you find this, I LOVED your book. It's excellent. Please don't read my review. I batter them out SOC style mostly for my own records, and potential readers are welcome to read them, but I don't write them for authors. They're rarely even about the books themselves—maybe e
David Bridges
Aug 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Hands down one of the best collections I have read this year. An incredibly creative and dark set of stories that I think could be classified as weird fiction with monsters, both supernatural and human monsters. There is just a tad of whimsy in Bulkin's writing that makes every story more grotesque and original than others you may have read in the genre. The stories are very accessible but contain a depth surrounding culture, folklore, family, and international politics. I honestly don't have an ...more
Sep 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
SHE SAID DESTROY is a singular and fantastic collection. Nadia Bulkin’s stories are equally at home in Southeast Asia and Midwest America, and all bring a cogent sociopolitical bite of one sort or another. Some are movingly strange, some are deeply sad, all are spellbinding. Go to Amazon and do the Look Inside and see for yourself. You can read the first story and part of the second, and if that doesn’t convince you, nothing I say will either. Highly recommended for enthusiasts of original and w ...more
Jul 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Nadia Bulkin has immense talent, which is on full display here. The stories range from Lovecraftian mythologies to entirely more modern offerings, but they all drop you into a world that's just off to some degree. Once there, it's sink or swim - the worldbuilding is impressive, but these are short stories and there's no time for infodumps!
The Five Stages of Grief and Girl, I Love You are my standout favourites, but altogether it's a fantastically impressive collection.
Buddy read with the fantas
Bill Wallace
Sep 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
A fine collection of modern horror stories told in a very distinctive voice. There's not much subtlety in any of these tales -- no tiptoeing around the actuality of the extremely supernatural elements -- but they wear their creepy candor well. A few of them are Lovecraftian, but not in that predictable. pedestrian way so many Lovecraft-inspired writers practice. My favorite here is "Red Goat, Black Goat," which is definitely Lovecraftian and really quite good. The book's introduction makes much ...more
I saw Nadia at the Stoker Con Librarian's Day, talking about She Said Destroy on her first panel. I was intrigued when her writing was described as sociopolitical horror. Her writing is visceral and clear, the characters fleshed out well for short stories and her themes truly creepy. That said, I am not a fan of horror. I also don't like things that don't have clean endings. I like things wrapped up and explained, but of course the world doesn't work that way and horror is one of the genres that ...more
Ian Welke
Jul 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I read this book mostly on a cross country plane flight, and liked it so much I read the rest in the hotel the first night of my trip. And this is despite the fact that I’d read several of the stories before… the ones in Sword and Mythos and She Walks In Shadows definitely, but the thing is, even the ones I’d read before are so well told that it was a pleasure to read them again.
David Agranoff
Burned through this excellent collection of modern horror fiction. Full review coming but this is one hell of a powerful collection.
Johan Haneveld
Mar 30, 2019 rated it liked it
Close to 3,5 stars. Due to the glowing introduction and the fact that several stories collected here had won awards or were included in best of the year anthologies I had high expectations. Since I started writing horror stories myself more, I try and read more horror collections myself and I bought this on the basis of a very enthousiastic revies. The cover seemed to suggest some steampunky influences even. But this is a book where the coverimage has nothing to do with the book. I can't imagine ...more
This short story collection is easily one of the best books I've read in 2018.
It's so well-written!!! The characters are well-fleshed out despite the word limit of the format. The horror is slightly scary but not too much mainly because I feel it's an expression of very real fears people have in their every day lives (dealing with the consequences of decisions made when that seemed like the only solution, fear of inability to protect your loved ones, etc). The horror elements are also described
Mar 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Nadia Bulkin provides a perspective that is underrepresented in horror fiction while comfortably inhabiting occupied spaces. Small towns, isolated spaces, and religious fervor bordering on cultishness populate the pages. A number of these stories are deep in the territory of The Weird and Magical Realism. For those whose tastes run towards those subgenres, there is a lot to feast on here. My favorite of those is “Endless Life” which explores the haunting of colonialism and erasure.

But I prefer
Jan 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Nadia Bulkin’s debut collection She Said Destroy was a wild ride! This book has some of the most inventive stories I have come across recently, which is impressive given the fact that I have read a massive number of stories published by the most varied authors in the horror/weird field. Although not all the stories struck a chord with me, I cannot deny that Bulkin is a very talented writer with a self-assured voice. The stories that stayed with me the most are "Girl, I Love You," "Endless Life," ...more
Joe Zanetti
Jan 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Nadia Bulkin's collection is a much needed gut-punch to the horror community. It really should be required reading for anyone who likes reading horror that breaks apart misconceptions, shatters stereotypes that still permeate the field, are fresh and original, and are complex and rich in scope and diversity. Nadia deftly explores a variety of themes from the final girl trope, politics (she does this masterfully), misogyny, the idea of family, friendship, loss, racism, and so much more. She pisse ...more
Bill Hsu
Nov 20, 2017 rated it liked it
The first story, "Intertropical Convergence Zone", is very impressive, an intense contemporary fairy tale of political and magical darkness. The next few stories are less convincing to me, with the ghostbusters antics and occasional awkward language.
Richard Gerlach
Mar 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Every story was fantastic. Review to come.
Sam Edwards
Apr 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
By now you've probably heard all about this book. About how effortlessly Nadia Bulkin brings in politics, that ever-present macro-structure and lets it ripple into the horror of her stories. So I won't be talking about that.

Instead, I think Bulkin deserves credit for exemplifying what the intersection of horror and magical realism can look like. The majority of these stories are ghost-tragedies, though there are certainly monsters and there is certainly gore. The magical realism aspect of these
Brian O'Connell
Jan 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A stunner. Easily my favorite prose book of 2017 and certainly one of the finest additions to the ever-growing canon of the Weird Renaissance. Themes of gender, maturation, politics, oppression, religion, and horror culture are inexorably weaved into stories of animal headed witch-gods, ghostly apocalypses, cosmic trees, profane rituals, and demonic bargains. A list of highlights would be redundant, as it would contain virtually all of the stories in the collection. "Absolute Zero", "Girl, I Lov ...more
Becky Spratford
May 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I included this in my Halfway to Halloween column in the 4/1/18 issue of Library Journal:

"A rising star of the weird fiction subgenre, Nadia Bulkin intrigues with her debut story compilation, She Said Destroy (Word Horde. 2017. ISBN 9781939905338. pap. $16.99; ebk. ISBN 9781939905345). It features tales in which supernatural frights and real-world dread collide with power-hungry dictators, haunted hotels, cursed children, murderous monsters, bullies, “the
Diana  Marie Denza
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I'm typically not the biggest fan of short stories (with the exception of Shirley Jackson's short stories), but this was an excellent, eerie collection that had many more hits than misses. I am particularly impressed by Nadia Bulkin's creativity. She builds worlds - sometimes ones that are quite unlike our own - pretty seamlessly, and her characters are flawed and believable.

My favorites were "No Gods, No Masters," about a woman who made a pact with a demon and the implications it has on the ge
Wyrd Witch
Jan 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror
Let’s get any fears out of the way: She Said Destroy is easily a contender for the best horror I’ve read this year. It’s only January. That should tell you everything you need to know.

But that wouldn’t be fun for a blog like this, would it?

Nadia Bulkin’s collection contains no clunkers (just one middling offering). Ninety percent of the stories in this collection pulls you into a dark hyper-reality that reflects so clearly upon our own that I do feel terrified remembering the events of each of t
Corey Farrenkopf
May 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was such an awesome collection of Horror stories. Nadia Bulkin does an amazing job of depicting working class America and the struggle that goes along with the territory, whether it be paying your mortgage on the family farm or fighting off the winged demon that has eaten all your friends outside the cow barn. Her attention to character is precise, each of them fully fleshed out and believable. My favorite story was "Only Unity Saves The Damned." The extended metaphor throughout the piece w ...more
Jennifer Wilson
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow. This is a spectacular debut collection. Nadia Bulkin is a name you need to know. I started this book and wanted to blaze through it, but these are the kind of stories that after you finish, you need some time to recover from the sheer impact of what you just consumed.

All the stories were well-written and interesting. The ones that really stood out to me were: Intertropical Convergence Zone; Girl, I Love You; Endless Life; Violet is the Color of Your Energy; and No Gods, No Masters. I can't
Mar 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Super unlike anything I have ever read! This collection of horror stories center around the super natural / paranormal. Not scary or stomach turning, but very eery and fascinating. I loved the writing and will admit I didn't 100% understand every story in this collection, but it is one I look forward to coming back to in the future. As someone who has read a lot of horror recently, this was a delightful change of pace and I would love to see a full length novel from Nadia Bulkin!

Side note - that
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Play Book Tag: She Said Destroy/Nadia Bulkin/4 Stars 1 12 Jul 11, 2018 09:37AM  

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