Glorious Fiends by Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam

When infamous hot mess vampire Roxanne resurrects her deceased best friends, she's confronted by a dream-dwelling Guardian of the Underworld, who demands that she replace them in his afterlife with three equally nefarious creatures—or he'll drag her there instead. 

Reunited with Medusa and Mx. Hyde, Roxanne and her macabre girl gang must become monster hunters themselves and fight for the future of their friendship. 

Gory, sexy, silly, touching—Glorious Fiends asks who the real monsters are, and if the bonds that we think are solely human are really ours alone. This Hammer-inspired odyssey is a nostalgic trip through '80s horror tropes—with modern sensibilities. 

TITLE: Glorious Fiends
AUTHOR: Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam
PUBLISHER: Underland Press
YEAR: 2022
LENGTH: 140 pages 
AGE: Adult
GENRE: Horror

Queer Rep Summary: Lesbian/Sapphic Main Character(s), Bi/Pan Main Character(s), Genderqueer/Nonbinary Secondary Character(s).

*I received a free review copy in exchange for an honest review of this book. 

GLORIOUS FIENDS is a fever dream of a book, with intense friendships between utterly relatable monsters tasked with dooming their fellow creatures for their own survival, lest they be forever tormented in their nightmares.

It explores friendship, the tension between old friends and new relationships, and outgrowing each other without hard feeling. The short format brings a frenetic energy to these themes, with each scene lasting precisely long enough to create intense emotional arcs in very few pages. 

Characterization is definitely much more prominent than worldbuilding in this. Everyone's powers seem to be what would make sense for their kind of monster but also be kind of inconvenient for how this all works. I didn't recognize all the references because I'm not a horror buff, but based on what I did catch I think most of the monsters are based on classic horror, usually with some genderbending involved (explicitly so for Mx. Hyde). My favorite is Medusa, with a use for her snakes that I haven't run into before and which definitely surprised me. 

Check this out if you'd like some sexy horror which doesn't shy away from the gloriously weird.

CW for sexual content (explicit), sexism (brief), drug use, alcohol, excrement (brief mention), vomit, blood (graphic), gore, violence, body horror, torture, self harm, cannibalism, murder, death (graphic).

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