Mira Grant caught me with her very first novel. Well, her first novel as Mira Grant, which is a pseudonym for Seanan McGuire, fantasy author. Mira Grant is what she writes horror as.
Her first novel here was Feed, the kickoff to her zombie world. Zombies and Presidential politics. An interesting combination. Her first book for Subterranean Press was a collection of stories set in the early days of this zombie uprising (later combined with more stories as a hardcover for Orbit books as Rise.
Since then, she’s gone a little more extreme in her stories for them.
First comes Rolling in the Deep, about a documentary crew going looking for mermaids and finding a lot more than they expected. Needless to say, her mermaids are not pretty girls with fish tails. Everything quickly goes very wrong.
More recently, Orbit announced that they will be publishing Into the Drowning Deep this November. This will be the story of the expedition to figure out what happened to the first one.
Now we have Final Girls, coming out in April.
The book starts out with a scene from a horror movie. Two young sisters are running for the border of a small town. It’s harvest festival, their parents have been killed, and if they can just make it there, they’ll be save from the supernatural horror hunting them.
This isn’t actually what the story is about. Instead, it’s about a scientist who has developed a combination of drugs and VR that can help treat behaviour problems. The two sisters are actually adults, and they’ve never been able to stand each other. But by going through this fake scenario, and a couple more later, they can develope the closeness they never had. Making the scenario so fake means that they will have the benefit of the experience without ever thinking that it was actually real events
Now a reporter has arrived to examine the process and write about it for a science magazine. She’s very sceptical, based on personal history. Her mother died when she was young, and her father died in prison for abusing a patient. After his death, it turned out that the testimony that condemned him was ‘recovered memories’ that were completely fake.
So, she and the scientist behind the therapy go under it together. Two preteens meeting and becoming best friends. And naturally, this is where everything goes wrong.
To be honest, I never really liked horror movies. They tend to be ridiculous, and so many just go for the gross-out, fake jump-scares. But Seanan McGuire (aka Mira Grant) loves them. This book is pretty much a love-letter to those movies, and especially (I think) the eighties versions of them. And that love comes through on every page of this novella, pulling the reader along with them.
Both books do something I’ve never seen in my reading, and both are definitely worth trying to track down. Being from Subterranean Press, they are limited edition books, and the ebook versions weren’t available in Canada.