This book has been on my list since I read The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires. Hendrix takes on another staple of the horror genre here: the slasher. But in this case, the focus is on what happens to those Final Girls after the credits roll.
Lynette Tarkington is a final girl. As a teen, she survived a Christmas Day massacre that saw her entire family die. Lynette is older now, but she is definitely not okay. She is a creature of caution and routine, rarely leaving her apartment except to attend a support group of other final girls. But someone seems to be stalking these women, and it’s up to Lynette and her other Final Girls to put a stop to this new monster on the prowl. The other Final Girls are based on characters from the major slasher genres: Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street, the Texas Chainsaw Massacre. A passing familiarity with these movies will provide some context, but you don’t need to be an expert to follow the story.
Lynette is an interesting protagonist. She’s prickly and moody, determined to protect herself above all else, but you also know that she has survived incredible trauma. In fact, each of the Final Girls in the group gives us a different window into the myriad ways trauma can permanently change a person. There’s also a lot of action here to keep the plot moving, and some red herrings thrown in to keep you guessing.
I liked this book a lot, but not as much as TCBCGTSV. Part of my issue was the narrator of the audio book – she had a very mannered way of speaking that I found incredibly distracting. I think I would have enjoyed this book a lot more if I had read it in print. But also, I think this book suffers a bit by comparison to My Heart is a Chainsaw, which I read earlier this year and absolutely loved.