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Saturday, October 10, 2020

Review: Ring Shout by P. Djèlí Clark

 Ring Shout 
by  P. Djèlí Clark

Thank you NetGalley and Tor Books for this copy.

Publisher: Tor
Publish Date: October 13, 2020
Kindle Edition
192 Pages
Genres: Horror, Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Sci-Fi

D. W. Griffith is a sorcerer, and The Birth of a Nation is a spell that drew upon the darkest thoughts and wishes from the heart of America. Now, rising in power and prominence, the Klan has a plot to unleash Hell on Earth.

Luckily, Maryse Boudreaux has a magic sword and a head full of tales. When she's not running bootleg whiskey through Prohibition Georgia, she's fighting monsters she calls "Ku Kluxes." She's damn good at it, too. But to confront this ongoing evil, she must journey between worlds to face nightmares made flesh--and her own demons. Together with a foul-mouthed sharpshooter and a Harlem Hellfighter, Maryse sets out to save a world from the hate that would consume it.

My Review:

Klu Klux Klan members turned into (bigger) monsters under a hex from the Birth of a Nation film and Maryse Boudreaux and friends are not having any of it!  There's so much happening in these short pages and this is a novella that is scary on so many levels.  While this takes place during the prohibition era in Georgia, Clark also peppers in many other historical parts that really shows how much I still need to educate myself.

While this genre mash-up definitely has its humorous side, it's also a mix of injustice, vengeance, hate breeding on top of hate, monstrous humans becoming larger than life actual monsters, historical points and some different horror parts - from sci-fi to fantasy to body horror and some gross descriptions.  Even the parts that might not quite work for you, you still can't look away from.  There is a LOT happening in under 200 pages so strap yourself in and prepare for the bumpy ride.  Get comfortable with being uncomfortable.

It did take a little bit for me to quite grasp what was happening and the uniqueness of this journey.  While sometimes this kind of mixed genre read doesn't quite work for me, it does work here.  Not your typical horror novella - this dark magical fantasy will keep you on your tippy toes.


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