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Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked

3.91  ·  Rating details ·  221 ratings  ·  83 reviews
A young woman’s fears regarding the gruesome photos appearing on her cell phone prove justified in a ghastly and unexpected way. A chainsaw-wielding Evil Dead fan defends herself against a trio of undead intruders. A bride-to-be comes to wish that the door between the physical and spiritual worlds had stayed shut on All Hallows’ Eve. A lone passenger on a midnight train fi ...more
Kindle Edition, 188 pages
Published August 21st 2018 by Unnerving (first published July 30th 2018)
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destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
I always love a good horror collection, and when I was offered this one, it felt implied that the stories were not only spooky, but also feminist in nature, which immediately hooked my interest. I will say that there are a lot of feminist notes to the tales, as well as subversion of some tropes here and there, though it wasn’t enough to make this anthology a complete winner for me.

There are definitely a few gems in the collection, such as:
Red Room, in which a woman tries to warn her boyfriend
Sadie Hartmann
Oct 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
I need to remember to choose the right edition (format) when I start doing my updates for a book--I didn't read the Kindle edition but I can't change that now or I'll lose all my updates and progress. I read a physical copy sent to me by Unnerving Publishing in exchange for an honest review.
4.5 stars!
As much as I read horror, you'd think I go to bed terrified every night, but I don't. It's not that the books I read aren't scary, they are--I just think that my house feels safe, I have my husband
4.5 Stars!

SOMETHING BORROWED, SOMETHING BLOOD-SOAKED is a collection of thirteen stories by author Christa Carmen. This is the first I have read from this author, and I was very impressed with both her writing style and unique ideas.

". . . All things sounded the same when they fell into death."

As with most collections, certain stories will appeal more strongly to each individual reader. I found that within the various themes presented, there were quite a few that I felt were full five-star t
Nov 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book was sent to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

From the moment I saw the cover I just had this feeling I would love this collection, and I was so right. This is a fantastic book of deeply disturbing and thought provoking horror stories. Christa Carmen is definitely not afraid to take a story all the way.

The stories in this collection about addiction are truly haunting. Liquid Handcuffs in particular is fantastic. I went through an entire spectrum of feelings during t
Jan 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone looking for a new, exciting voice in the genre.
Recommended to Dustin by: the Horror Writers Association group
Many thanks of gratitude to the Horror Writers Association's Facebook group, and especially the author, for making this opportunity possible. She provided a PDF file in exchange for an honest review. My opinions are my own.


"But Christa Carmen isn't interested in silence, and her collection...isn't looking to lead you calmly down the aisle. Your path is littered with temptations that test the strength of your mind, heart, and stomach, and over thirteen tales of death and dependency...Car
Frank Errington
Apr 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Review Copy

Very impressive for a debut collection. A wide variety of tales, each entertaining in its own way.

The title, Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked, is apropos to a comment the author makes in her acknowledgments...

"Something borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked represents both my life and my writing post-recovery from addiction."

Thirsty Creatures - The first story in this collection certainly lived up to the "blood-soaked" part of the title.

Red Room - This story alone is worth the pu
Nov 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
"The final girl may live, but she's stripped of so much by the time the credits roll."

Something Borrowed Something Blood-Soaked is Christa Carmen's debut collection of 13 stories, and I enjoyed reading it!

First off, I want to say that this book has one of my favorite covers from this year. It's spooky and haunting, and this book will stick in your head. I feel like it's perfect for letting readers know that they're about to get into some crazy stuff inside.

My top 5 stories in this book are Red
Oct 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-list-2019
My favorite short story collection of the year! I was blown away by this book. Christa Carmen is a future horror superstar. Gorgeous writing, beautifully written characters, and scary as fuck situations make up one of the finest author debuts I have ever read. It actually makes me sad she has no other books out there at the moment. I am counting the days till she finishes her novel, which I promise to buy and read the day it’s published. My highest recommendation. I plan on pushing this book on ...more
Robert Vanneste
Feb 26, 2019 rated it liked it
3.0 - 3.5 . My favorite was Thirsty Creatures followed by All Souls Of Eve and Red Room . A entertaining read .
Aug 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked is Christa Carmen’s debut collection of thirteen short stories. What I liked most about this collection is they are all centered around women with real life issues and fears sprinkled along side the paranormal and spooky. While reading this short collection, it brought me back to a time when I was younger and used to watch Tales From the Crypt. I have always missed those chilling tales and feel that the horror genre has emerged into something totally ma ...more
Alex | | findingmontauk1
Thank you so much to the author and publisher for sending this book in exchange for an honest review!

Can we first take a moment to acknowledge, appreciate, and worship this cover?! The cover is the first thing that drew me to wanting this book; I won't lie. I had just finished a huge marathon of the Saw movies and then I come across this book where a woman has this pig head or mask... SOLD!

I am going to go ahead and say, too, that short stories are not my favorite. I like a little more meat on t
 Reading Reindeer 2021 On Proxima Centauri

Wow! When I started the first story of thirteen in this very special single-author collection, I wasn't sure I would like it. This first story is apocalyptic and surreal--the flavor of Tanith Lee if she ever took up Apocalypse. That question lasted a nano-moment as quickly I was off and running, completely absorbed. Ms. Carmen possesses both an extensive imagination, and the sensory capacity of an artist or poet. She also posses
S.J. Budd
Jul 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
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 fo
Ashley (spookishmommy)
Dec 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Thank you to Christa Carmen and Unnerving for the free copy in exchange for an honest review!

Ok, this cover is awesome. I love it. And why am I so hard on short stories? I need to stop because this collection was AWESOME. I loved the variety of horror. I think my favorite story was Liquid Handcuffs. It was so raw and gritty. Red Room was awesome too. So gruesome!! And to round out my top 3 I'm going with All Souls of Eve. It packed a lot of emotion.
Tim Meyer
Oct 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A wonderful collection of short stories, one of the best I've read in quite some time. So many solid tales with great range, a lot of them having to deal with addiction, which I have a definite soft spot for. Two standouts were ALL SOULS OF EVE and LIQUID HANDCUFFS. Highly recommend it, especially to set that October mood! 4.5/5 ...more
Sara Tantlinger
Nov 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
I really, really enjoyed this collection. Each story features its own disturbing, twisted tale, yet there are threads between them that help the stories feel like they belong in this particular collection together. Christa Carmen's prose has some truly fantastic lines and I have a feeling this writer is only going to get stronger and stronger the more she writes. I can't wait to see what she does next! My favorite pieces from SOMETHING BORROWED, SOMETHING BLOOD-SOAKED were "Red Room," "Lady of t ...more
Sep 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thanks to being a giveaway winner for this book, I had the pleasure of reading this book and finally discovering this author which I didn’t know of before. I really enjoyed this book with the short stories so really I got 13 different stories all in one book. It was very clever and most of the stories made me nervous to want to keep reading on. I was very impressed since I took a chance on an author/book I had never even heard of till the giveaway. Christa Carmen is a very talented author and th ...more
V. Castro
Nov 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This woman is incredible. Great writer and storyteller! Every story is a bloody, emotional, weird and wonderful journey that will make you think and feel. I love how she tackles issues women experience throughout their lives. You are immediately involved in the characters lives and situations despite their tales being a short story. Not all horror makes you jump, it's so much more than that.

It's not all serious though! Christa sneaks in humour in the best of ways to break the tension when you n
Theresa Braun
Oct 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Searching for some thought-provoking, yet entertaining dark stories? Look no further. Grab some Dunkin Donuts coffee (you’ll find the author has a penchant for it) and launch into a reading binge. Carmen showcases her story writing chops in this collection. Her pieces have appeared in numerous publications, so it’s handy to have thirteen of them right here. Carmen doesn’t shy away from grim subjects like substance abuse or self-loathing. Her characters are real and relatable, yet gorgeously flaw ...more
May 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle-unlimited
4.5 stars!
Jul 25, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2018, horror
A few of the stories were entertaining. Sadly, most didn't grab me. My review is posted here ---> ...more
Audra (ouija.reads)
My thanks to Unnerving Press for sending me and the Night Worms copies of this one to read and review.

I have to say, I was put off a bit by the cover on this book at first. It is fairly disturbing! The image haunted me, and it reminded me of when I was younger and I would see posters for scary movies at the movie theaters, especially all the Child’s Play sequels, and I was so scared of that creepy doll on the poster that I didn’t watch those movies for ages. Turns out I really like the Chucky mo
Cody | CodysBookshelf
Thanks to the publisher for sending a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!

Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked is the debut release from small-press horror author Christa Carmen. Carmen, though a relative newbie to the world of horror, has some chops. She doesn’t fall prey to traps many other small-press horror writers do, and for that I am relieved.

I must admit, though, that this collection didn’t scare me much. “Red Room” is the closest I got to feelings chills, and “Liqui
Sep 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
As I read the stories offered in Christa Carmen's debut collection, a few words came to mind; powerful, thought-provoking, and disturbing. While not every story was a favorite, there wasn't one I didn't enjoy on some level. I think the reason for this is while not all of the characters appealed to me, Carmen's writing does.

My favorites of the bunch are Red Room, The Girl Who Loved Bruce Campbell, and Flowers From Amarylis, and there is definitely a feminist flavor throughout the collection, but
Michael Upstill
Aug 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
* I received an advance copy of this collection of short stories in exchange for an honest review *
Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked by Christa Carmen, to be published in the coming weeks by Unnerving, is a brilliant selection.
From the first page Christa's work shone, each story diverse and thought-provoking, and kept me captivated as a reader to the final page.
I do not want to make this a spoiler review, so I'm not going to analyse the stories for you - that is your job as a reader.
William Bitner Jr.
Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked
By Christa Carmen

Genre - Fiction
Category - Horror/Psychological/Short Stories
Pages - 242
Publication Info - Unnerving (July 30, 2018)
Format - Softcover
Rating - 📙📙📙📙📙

Every once in a while you come upon a book at just the right time in your life or during a certain holiday or season that the book fits into perfectly. Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked by Christa Carmen fits the bill on both fronts. These 13 short stories of horror, terror, torment,
Kim Napolitano
Oct 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It was the amazing buzz about this book that caught my attention. Two of my trusted reviewers told me not too miss these stories. They were right. Beautiful prose, stark and brutal description of opioid addicts personal hell makes these amazing collection of short stories stand out. Not all of the stories are touched by drug addiction. My personal favorites-Lady of The Flies touches on about mental illness, as a lonely girl only wants to make friends. Another that touches opioid abuse, the bitte ...more
Bruce Baugh
Feb 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked is the first collection from Christa Carmen, whom I'd heard of but hadn't read. What really strikes me about this volume is how much the stories aren't like each other - Carmen is trying lots of things, looking in lots of directions, approaching many subjects in many different ways. I like that!

Some of these stories are intensely supernatural, while others are starkly naturalistic. Some are thick with well-done symbolism, while others are straightforwar
Dec 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I love good horror and this book has it all regarding it, from killers, zombie like creatures to intern shadow Wolf, I usually point out the best stories but honestly all of them are good, surprisingly, not common on a short stories book, I really love them all, this book is terrifying, gruesome, gory and thrilling it is also my first book from Christa Carmen I really want to read more from her brilliantly twisted mind, I love closing the year challenge with a 5 star Book thank you Christa, I wi ...more
Red Lace Reviews
Short fiction that hones into the lives of individuals striving to endure emotional, and supernatural, disturbances. From homicidal monsters, to train-haunting ghosts, to the debilitating battles with the mind, this collection has a sprinkle of everything.

(WARNING: This review contains minor spoilers.)

I received this book in exchange for an honest review. I thank Erin Sweet Al-Mehairi for giving me the opportunity.

I feel like I've been reading a lot of collections and anthologies these days, per
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Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked won the 2018 Indie Horror Book Award for Best Debut Collection, and additional work has been published in places such as Year’s Best Hardcore Horror, Fireside, Not All Monsters, and Behold the Undead of Dracula.

These days when I’m not writing, I keep chickens, read books like Mary Who Wrote Frankenstein and The Gashlycrumb Tinies to my daughter, forget to

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