Samantha's Reviews > Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked

Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked by Christa Carmen
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it was amazing

I was lucky enough to get a signed and personalized copy of this paperback from Christa Carmen in October 2020 and I'm kicking myself for taking so long to get it off my TBR list. This book is an incredible horror collection that pertains to matrimony, feminism, addiction, death, poetry, and some comedy. I truly loved these stories, but I can say that I was more partial to the first half of the book than the second.

The writing is phenomenal and I felt some similarities between Christa Carmen and Sara Tantlinger's writing - true horror poetry. Although this book is stories and not actually poetry, it still feels like poetry at times. Haunting lines and imagery abound within each story. For example, in the story "Thirsty Creatures" I noted this line, "All things sounded the same when they fell in death."

My favourite story in this book is "All Souls Eve." It is essentially a horror version of Ebenezer Scrooge being visited by three ghosts, except this is a woman on the eve of her wedding night being visited by the ghosts of boyfriends past (and passed). It was one of the most satisfying, uplifting feminist stories I've ever read. I was grinning from ear to ear and feeling so thrilled by how it was written and how it ended. "From now on, I survive the final act on the basis of my own abilities. The only one responsible for my successes or failures is me. That's a promise."

My second favourite story in this book is "Liquid Handcuffs." It is a horrific situation where a counsellor helping addicts is abducted and tortured by the boyfriend of one of her patients. This boyfriend has decided he wants to punish her for helping his girlfriend move away from addiction, that lifestyle, and consequently, him. I was blown away by how painfully realistic this story seemed to me. Not wanting to give too much away on this one, I'll say one thing that makes it disturbing and great, "Appearances can be deceiving."

The other stories are certainly worth a mention as well, but in the interest of avoiding spoilers I will leave it at the ones that were my favourite. Just know that Christa Carmen has got a knack for horror, the knowledge behind psychology and addiction that makes these stories extra-poignant, and poetic writing that jumps off the page. I very much recommend this book.

Review coming soon to Horrorbound.net!
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Reading Progress

January 16, 2021 – Started Reading
January 16, 2021 – Shelved
January 18, 2021 – Finished Reading

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