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Immortal Letters #1

Dearest Clementine: Dark and Romantic Monstrous Tales

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Beautiful. Unique. And utterly romantic.

Clementine has been taken by a creature of darkness. Dorin is a fiend in love who must find Clementine before losing her forever. While on his desperate search, Dorin pens eight dark and romantic monstrous tales, written only for Clementine. Each story serves a purpose, and that is, do monsters have the ability to love, too?

Perfect for fans of The Language of Thorns, Silvia Moreno-Garcia, and Holly Black. Dearest Clementine is filled with swoony tales that will leave you captivated, breathless, and rooting for Dorin and Clementine to find one another again.

150 pages, Kindle Edition

First published July 28, 2020

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About the author

Candace Robinson

51 books1,035 followers
I spend my days consumed by words and hoping to one day find my own DeLorean time machine. My life consists of avoiding migraines, admiring Bonsai trees, watching classic movies, and living with my husband and daughter in Texas—where it can be forty degrees one day and eighty the next!

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 35 reviews
Profile Image for James.
Author 20 books3,729 followers
August 6, 2020
Candace Robinson is quite the versatile and varied authoress. I've read many of her short stories before, and I've always adored her fantasy books and young adult novels. This time, she's begun a new series entitled Letters, and it's meant to be a conversation between two lovers, Clementine and Dorin. In the first book, Dearest Clementine; Dark and Romantic Monstruous Tales, Dorin is searching for his beloved, as she's gone missing. He writes her a letter and shares a tale with each correspondence during his quest to locate her. I am very curious if these will be the only two main characters in the series, or will others be introduced...

There are about ten letters and stories in this collection. Each one builds deeper and darker. Most resemble a bit of a fairy tale or well-known story we've heard a bunch about before. But they're modern, twisted in a gruesome way, and meant to tickle your imagination. Take, for instance, my favorite, which also happens to be the first one. It easily captured my attention, as it focuses on a wooden marionette. Although his name isn't Pinocchio, the concept of lying is definitely important to the plot. I won't give away any spoilers, but imagine getting someone to do your evil bidding? Only to learn your mother or creator has an even darker web to discover. Luckily, someone's looking out for our little favorite toy... who just happens to hold a penchant for murder with an axe, weekly, even if he wishes he didn't have to do it!

These letters are romantic and heartwarming, despite the fury of the overall horror in the tales. Clementine and Dorin love one another. What's keeping them apart? When will we find out? How does the story relate to the tragedy that's befallen them? There's so much going on here, pay close attention, or you won't discover everything you're meant to learn. In the end, we certainly reach a milestone, but it's not what we expected, and I suspect, it's far from over... but maybe that's just hope. Definitely a fun way to experience an author's writing style and tone. Though a very different genre from her YA fiction, a similar finesse with imagery, setting, and word choice is stand-out. Great job!
Profile Image for Candace Robinson.
Author 51 books1,035 followers
August 7, 2020
This is a collection of dark and romantic stories within a bigger story. I loved writing them so much and this is one of my most favorite things I’ve written! 🖤
September 1, 2020
This short story collection is a succulent piece of fiction bearing heart and teeth: ferocious, mysterious, and highly imaginative. Accompany a monster named Dorin, who has lost his love and writes her letters and tells monstrous tales while searching for her.

As the collection begins with a Dorin's first letter to his Dearest Clementine, who first wishes that he was dead. Dorin's reflections on his love and loss proceed with the tales he writes about as a vehicle for the emotional toils he is going through. So, we meet a young woman who made a wooden puppet boy who dearly wished for Freewill, more so than being human in SAIL INTO THE UNKNOWN, 1872. From there we land in 1982, in A PIECE FOR HIM....which was my favorite of the short stories. It tells the story of an immortal whose mortal love is dying and she will try to save him by giving him a new body. Very engrossing this one was. From there it proceeds to a cabin and a lonely lover in LURED IN FOR DEATH and moves on to an invitation to dance with the devil in DARKNESS CAN BE GOOD. If you are a fan of Halloween, you will enjoy LAUGHTER IS ALWAYS BETTER of a girl who has always wanted to be a special effects horror movie artist. OUR HEARTS WITHER TOO was another favorite of the short stories. It tells the story of Morgen who ages just as humans do but needs a new heart each month to keep herself alive. Is she a monster or only stealing hearts to survive? Stories from the future are among the collection as well. In SOMETIMES WE'RE NOT HUNGRY, 2032, Siri is suffering in her wait for Camille in a world where "Ravs" may have a part in her disappearance. The concluding short story in the collection is dark and fairy tale and takes place in a remote, snowy-wite wood and a girl that's not really a girl, in WRONG IS POSSIBLY RIGHT, 1742.

In the meantime, Dorin is desperate to tell Clementine how he feels and about his fears for her. Will he be able to find her and save her from the Underworld?


This was my third book by this author I enjoyed reading all of them so far. Dearest Clementine differs from the other two I read in that it is all teeth and bite, and I loved it. This collection of tales shows an immense range of creativity and imagination and every story in between Dorin's letters leaves the reader with bits of the grotesque, longing and heartache.

I loved the voice in these monstrous tales. I haven't read one like that in a while. The underlying darkness, wretched times and longing capped with undying love and romance made these heartachingly sweet and bitter at the same time.

This is the perfect autumn read!


I received a copy of this novel from the author in exchange for a voluntary review. All opinions are my own. Thank you!

More of my reviews here:
Through Novel Time & Distance
Profile Image for Sissy Lu {Book Savvy Reviews}.
538 reviews50 followers
December 6, 2019
I loved this collection. I’ve never read a collection like this before. A story wrapped inside several stories. Dorin is trying to find his beloved and in the mean time he’s leaving a trail of stories behind.

Romance and horror at its best—who knew they belonged together?
Profile Image for Gerardo Delgadillo.
Author 4 books130 followers
November 5, 2019
DEAREST CLEMENTINE is a collection of short stories featuring out-of-the-ordinary romance. Meaning, this work has a unique take on romance, where the protagonists are the opposite of what we're used to. Monsters, actually. Monsters with big hearts. Letters to "Dearest Clementine" are intertwined in between the stories--a clever conduct to move and relate the tales together.

Overall, a great, out-of-the-ordinary horror-romance short story collection!
Profile Image for Dianne.
6,773 reviews574 followers
May 15, 2020
Love letters, dark tales of romance. Candace Robinson has outdone herself with DEAREST CLEMENTINE, a collection of tales told through the eyes of a romantic at heart, even if it is a demon’s heart.

This collection has all of the atmosphere of Gothic romance as Dorin writes to Clementine, stolen from him by another. These lovers are not your typical pair, they are monsters who live in the shadows, but they prove that even the darkest among can love. A quick read overall, but savor each short story and the letters from Dorin to Clementine, because at the root of each tale is love.

Entertaining, rich in atmosphere, Candace Robinson knows how to weave her work together with her words!

I received a complimentary ARC edition from Candace Robinson! This is my honest and voluntary review.

Series: Letters - Book 1
Publication Date: August 6, 2020
Publisher: Candace Robinson
Genre: Gothic Romance
Print Length: 133 pages
Available from: Amazon
For Reviews, Giveaways, Fabulous Book News, follow: http://tometender.blogspot.com
Profile Image for Amber R. Duell.
Author 26 books240 followers
October 31, 2019
I beta read this and LOVED it! Each story is so unique! My favorite part is all of the letters between stories which ties everything together while also telling a story of their own.
Profile Image for Janet Womack.
278 reviews6 followers
August 6, 2020
Dearest Clementine is a collection of deliciously macabre short stories that combine horror and romance in a new and unique way. If you've ever wondered if monsters can love and what lengths someone will go to for the ones they love, you'll love Dearest Clementine. A book for all of us that understood Frankenstein's monster.
Profile Image for R.J. Garcia.
Author 6 books329 followers
April 20, 2020
This collection of suspenseful stories was brilliantly tied together. It was also full of imagination. I love the cover and each story in this book.
Profile Image for Theresa Braun.
Author 26 books237 followers
June 6, 2020
In this collection Candace Robinson dares to explore what it’s like to find love (and lust) in the darkest of places. Be-splattered with lots of blood, these alternate realities are an imaginative slice of both human and non-human struggles, which ask us to consider whether all hearts beat the same. The letters Dorin sends Clementine, which appear between the stories, are a reminder of that theme that binds this whole book together. His devotion illustrates how hard it is to let go of the ones we love—and how far we will go to prove it, no matter how impossible the obstacles may seem.

“Sail into the Unknown”: This is a surprising retelling of “Pinocchio”. If you’ve read Robinson’s other works, you’ve already discovered her talent for taking a well-known story or character and making it her own. In this case, the main character’s seemingly hopeless circumstances suddenly appear to be looking up. It’s a lesson in never giving up hope, and in never turning away from your true self.

“A Piece of Him”: What’s an immortal girl to do when her beloved dies of old age? Use Frankenstein as a reference point to bring him back to life, of course. But don’t expect this one to involve harnessing lightning…it’s a tad more gruesome. Will it work? This shout out to Mary Shelley is about doing whatever it takes for a soulmate relationship.

“Lured in for Death”: This is a sensual tale of a depressed man who finds love with a demon who just might save his life. Despite the bleakness around them, ironically, their connection feels almost heavenly. Can they escape their own personal hells and find a way to be together forever? Some great imagery and lots of romantic steaminess in this one.

“Darkness Can Be Good”: A murder plot and a serial killer ghost who has a crush on you? Not the ideal situation, to say the least. Things get very emotional as this main character makes some heavy life and death decisions that pertain to her and her family. How will her flirtation with the ultimate bad boy end? You’ll have to read to find out…

“Laughter is Always Better”: So, you work at a haunted house connected to an urban legend about two restless spirits who kill two people every year to maintain their existence. And then you get trapped with a coworker you completely despise, but are inexplicably attracted to. What could possibly go wrong? I have to say, this is one of my favorite stories in the collection, thanks to the sexual tension juxtaposed with the paranormal.

“Our Hearts Wither Too”: You need a fresh heart every month to stay alive, but you’ve regretfully fallen in love with your latest would-be victim. Problems, problems. Can love really conquer all when this is your life? That is the question, isn’t it?

“Sometimes We’re Not Hungry”: Your girlfriend takes off during the zombie apocalypse and hasn’t yet returned, which means your only option is to pack up the cat and go looking for her. Yet, even if you do find her, what kind of future will that be? And, can love survive in such conditions? The answer might just surprise you…

“Wrong is Possibly Right”: The anthology ends with a story about winter creatures, one of whom is Krampus (but throw out your pre-conceived ideas about him—because this time around, he’s kinda HOT). Robinson does what she does best, building a world where nothing is what it seems. This is a case of not judging a book by its cover, lest you pass up what may be the great love of your life.

If you’re a fan of the paranormal, fantasy, and horror, you should be able to find something to love in this collection, especially if you crave a common thread of romance. Be warned that Robinson often asks you to suspend your disbelief in order to escape to alternate realms where strange is the name of the game. While we’re there we discover that whatever our darkest deeds might be, or how much blood may have on our hands, we all deserve to find love. These stories prove, albeit in the extreme, that there’s truly someone for everyone.
Profile Image for Anie.
1,048 reviews44 followers
May 3, 2020
I was blown away by this book. It's unique, and an awsome-a a new favorite for sure. .)

Clementine was taken from Dorin, and while he searches for her, he writes her letters and companies them with stories for her to read. There are a total of 8 stories in the book, each very, very different, but have one thing in common: love. And one message. No matter what kind of monster you are, no matter what you have done so far, everyone deserves to love.

It's just so romantic... :)

What surprised me the most, was that even though the stories were short, they didn't feel ... short. Like a complete story on its own.

I like them all so much. It seems possible to pick a favorite. The two that kept playing in my mind were Our Hearth Whiter To and Darkness Can Be Good.

Our Hearths Whiter To
She has to eat a new heart every month if she wants to survive. But with this month's target, she feels in love instead.

Darkness Can Be Good
Frankie watched all of her sisters die. And when she starts to see her sister's imaginary friends, she knows that her time has come too. The more they talk, the closer they become.

I adore the format, I haven't read anything like it. It's unique and very intriguing. I like the way it gives a backdrop to the stories and pulls them together-through the common theme.

So so good!
Highly recommend it!!!

received from the Author
Profile Image for Amber Hodges.
305 reviews23 followers
December 28, 2019
A collection of short stories that are mixed with paranormal romance and a twist of horror, and wow does it work! I found myself sucked in to each one and needing more, more, more! Each one is the perfect length to keep you satisfied and ready to find out what happens in the next one!
Profile Image for S.G.D. Singh.
Author 8 books112 followers
December 18, 2019
A collection of deliciously monstrous tales, filled with macabre romance and haunting adventure!❤️
1,121 reviews6 followers
January 30, 2020
Letters to Clementine that contain tales that are darkly romantic. Even monsters have a soft and loving side.
Profile Image for Emma Katherine.
271 reviews11 followers
July 3, 2020
Read my full review here: https://lifesanovelty.blogspot.com/20...

Opinions: Woah! Woah! I'm going to need life support after reading this book because every page was freakier and more emotionally straining than the last! This is a whole new genre for Robinson, and I LOVE it! Readers will be completely immersed in the chilling atmosphere, touchy violence, and the indescribable, racy romance! The letters between Clementine and Dorin were absolutely adorable and deserve every ounce of adoration readers can muster - but behind the letters was so much more drama, blood, and lust written in a lively style that shocks readers and opens our eyes to the different personalities people present in different situations. The violence was written masterfully so readers have a full picture of the scene but are left to imagine anything past the line of appropriate so nobody will feel uncomfortable while reading. All in all, Dearest Clementine was an animated, exhilarating read that I completely suggest to all mature readers!

My Favourite Thing: Strangely, I found the supernatural elements of Dearest Clementine - which in short is a flesh-eating protagonist - enticing! Not only was this a fresh, unique twist to NA, I loved experiencing the contrast between the demented side of Morgan and the cute, likable side of her. Robinson's writing was key to making this an immersive element rather than a disturbing one - in the quote "His heart gave a delicious pound of fear" the adjective delicious sends a shiver down our spine and gives readers a true sense of Robinson's passion and dedication towards making Dearest Clementine a resonating story. All of this wrapped up makes a 5 star book!

My Least Favourite Thing: With all intentions of being frank, I did not dislike a single thing about Dearest Clementine! Other readers may find the violence and lust too intense, but I loved it all!
Profile Image for Donna (BookDragonGirl).
1,002 reviews7 followers
November 1, 2019
This collection of stories is dark, romantic and a little creepy, then wrapped up or connected by letters to Clementine. It was such a creative and unique way of writing a book of short stories!! Each story grabbed and pulled you in right away, then kept your interest throughout. I loved and enjoyed them all, but I definitely had my favorites. Probably my two favorites are, LAUGHTER IS ALWAYS BETTER and WRONG IS POSSIBLY RIGHT. I also really enjoyed the Dear Clementine letters!!! I relished this collection of stories and want it for my library. This is absolutely a book I’d pick up and read again and again!!
Profile Image for meghann.
946 reviews1 follower
May 11, 2020
This was so much fun. I've never read a collection of short stories quite like this. Dorian is on a quest to find his missing love, Clementine. We get snippets of his journey to find her, along with eight short stories he writes for her during his search. Each has a paranormal/dark fairy tale/horror element, but is centered on the dark and twisty characters finding love as well. I love it when monsters find their happy.

***I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary ARC of this book.***
Profile Image for Alexa Whitewolf.
Author 34 books106 followers
November 16, 2019
This is easily my favorite compilation by the author, despite it being a mix of short stories. I adored, ADORED the varied cast of characters, the challenges they were facing and the way it all played out. All told with an underlying desperation by a man seeking out his bethroed, this short story collection will have you hooked from start to finish!
Profile Image for Kattie.
303 reviews44 followers
September 9, 2020
Another knock out from author Candace Robinson. Each story left me wanting it to be a full length novel!
Profile Image for Patricia Thibodeaux.
39 reviews1 follower
August 1, 2020
I loved every one of these short stories. They are all so different but with the same creepy feel to them. I couldn't even pick a favorite because they are all so amazing. Do yourself a favor and read this book. You will love every single one of the stories.
Profile Image for Regina.
1,684 reviews31 followers
September 30, 2020
Not like anything I've read before. Alternating letters to Clementine about his quest to find and rescue her, Dorin writes her dark faerie tales. Truly a beautiful thing to read; I couldn't put this down.
Profile Image for laura8759.
139 reviews13 followers
June 24, 2020
Thank you so much to Candace Robinson for the pdf download of dearest clementine : dark and romantic the story was good and so was the writing I like books that have multiple stories in them makes it more fun I like short stories, this had so much going on some of it was unexpected you would never expect this book to have blood guts and death with a lot of romance I have read almost all of her books she is my new favorite author I’m a huge fan of hers an overall good read while stuck in quarantine or you just need a quick read it had suspense, twist and turns on every page I would recommend this book to my friends and family LAURA8759.
Profile Image for Tanya.
289 reviews13 followers
August 7, 2020
I was gifted a copy by the author, all thoughts are my own

After reading the first letter and story I knew this was something different. I've never read something like this before, stories in letters all connecting.

These stories are each unique, dark, creepy and oddly romantic. It doesn't sound like it should work together but it really does.

If you love being creeped out, enjoy dark tales, getting lost in a book or are looking for something new/a new author to try give this/Candace Robinson a go.

Profile Image for Angela.
322 reviews
September 2, 2020
I received this as an eARC to read for free in exchange for my honest review. Thank you to Candace Robinson for giving me access.

These dark and romantic tales are exactly what the heart needs when wanting a quick read. Each story is super short and to the point.

I love how Candace can spin a tale that we've known since childhood and recreate it into something more.
1,412 reviews5 followers
March 26, 2021
Dearest Clementine: Dark and Romantic Monstrous Tales by Candace Robinson. This is a new author for me, but I really enjoyed her work and talented storytelling. I’ve honestly never read anything quite like this book before. It contains a dark twisted love story, passion, and twists and unexpected turns that keep you engaged and captivated. I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.
June 30, 2023
A captivating epistolary collection of stories written as love letters to a missing lover. The 8 short stories within the book are both beautiful and ghoulish reimagings of classic monsters. To sum it all up, I'd call this story a fun rollercoaster of monsterly love and devotion.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 35 reviews

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