At a Glance
Title: The Dead Girls Club
Author: Damien Angelica Walters
Published: December 10, 2019 by Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Horror, Thriller, Fiction
Goodreads Rating: 3.55 out of 5
My Rating: ★★★★☆
“Red Lady, Red Lady, show us your face…
In 1991, Heather Cole and her friends were members of the Dead Girls Club. Obsessed with the macabre, the girls exchanged stories about serial killers and imaginary monsters, like the Red Lady, the spirit of a vengeful witch killed centuries before. Heather knew the stories were just that, until her best friend Becca began insisting the Red Lady was real–and she could prove it.
That belief got Becca killed.
It’s been nearly thirty years, but Heather has never told anyone what really happened that night–that Becca was right and the Red Lady was real. She’s done her best to put that fateful summer, Becca, and the Red Lady, behind her. Until a familiar necklace arrives in the mail, a necklace Heather hasn’t seen since the night Becca died.
The night Heather killed her.
Now, someone else knows what she did…and they’re determined to make Heather pay.”
Alright ya’ll know I love a good thriller & The Dead Girls Club did not disappoint. This is a solid ★★★★☆ for me. I would not say it was my favorite thriller of 2019 but I did fly through the book in 2 days.
Heather Cole is a successful child Psychologist. She treats children of abuse, those with behavioral issue, and those who have seen horrific things. She’s good at her job because she knows there always is a story behind what these children have experienced. Her own experiences have lead her to know that to be true. She knows that even the best kids can be pushed to do terrible things. She also knows this to be true, because when she was 12 Heather killed her best friend.
The Red Lady, started as a story that Becca told to The Dead Girls Club. The Dead Girls Club comprised of 4 members; Heather, Becca, Gia, and Rachel. What started as a club for the four of them to share their love of serial killers turned into a stage for Becca to share her story of The Red Lady. A witch, Becca, believed to be real. Becca’s relentless insistence that the Red Lady was real, quickly causes pandemonium and paranoia between the girls. Slowly Gia and Rachel are barred from hanging out with Becca. Even Heather, Becca’s BFF, begin to see less and less of her, until one day goes missing and her mother goes to prison for murdering her.
This is very well written thriller with a few curve balls I did not see coming, which is saying something since I read a lot of thrillers. I will say that we learn quite a bit around the symptoms to look for in troubled teens. There were plenty of times throughout the story where I wanted to shake Heather, so that see could realize her friend was being abused, but when I was twelve I doubt I would have understood it either.
I did really enjoy the way Becca channeled her misfortunes into the story of The Red Lady. How she viewed her as her savior and became utterly convinced that this was the only way she’d be saved. It’s easy to see how complete conviction in an idea can quickly become what seems real. Get the book HERE!
I hope you enjoyed my thoughts on The Dead Girls Club. If you liked this review please let me know either by commenting below or by visiting my instagram @speakingof_books. Huge thanks to Crooked Lane Books for my advanced copy of the book.
About the Author: Damien Angelica Walters
Damien Angelica Walters is the author of the upcoming supernatural thriller, The Dead Girls Club (Crooked Lane Books, December 2019), about two young girls, a scary story that becomes far too real, and the tragic and terrifying consequences that follow one of them into adulthood. She is also the author of Cry Your Way Home, Paper Tigers, and Sing Me Your Scars, winner of This is Horror’s Short Story Collection of the Year. Her short fiction has been nominated twice for a Bram Stoker Award, reprinted in The Year’s Best Dark Fantasy & Horror and The Year’s Best Weird Fiction, and published in various anthologies and magazines, including the Shirley Jackson Award Finalists Autumn Cthulhu and The Madness of Dr. Caligari, World Fantasy Award Finalist Cassilda’s Song, Nightmare Magazine, Black Static, and Apex Magazine. Until the magazine’s closing in 2013, she was an Associate Editor of the Hugo Award-winning Electric Velocipede. She lives in Maryland with her husband and two rescued pit bulls.