Review | His Hideous Heart ed. by Dahlia Adler

His Hideous HeartTitle: His Hideous Heart

Edited by: Dahlia Adler

Rating: ★★★☆☆ (3.5 Stars)

Publisher: Flatiron Books

Release Date: September 10, 2019


This anthology was the perfect combination of creepy and purposeful. Each story had a message reflected in its horrors that wonderfully mirrored Poe’s orginal tales (which are included in the book as well). It was well worth the wait to read these hauntungly reimagined stories by such wonderful authors.

Average Rating: 3.61 stars

Most Excited ForShe Rode a Horse of Fire by Kendare Blake; Night Tale by Tessa Gratton; A Drop pf Stolen Ink by Emily Lloyd-Jones

FavoritesNight Tide by Tessa Gratton; The Glittering Death by Caleb Roehrig; Lygia by Dahlia Adler

Least FavoritesThe Raven (Remix) by Amanda Lovelace; The Fall of the Bank of Usher by Fran Wilde

She Rode a Horse of Fire by Kendare Blake | ★★★☆☆
I thought this story had great atmosphere and set the tone for the anthology. It was so rich and really felt morphed from the orignal story, but I loved how it was updated – even thought it kept a historical setting.

It’s Carnival by Tiffany D. Jackson | ★★★★☆
The vibrant Carnical parade setting was the perfect cover for this sadistic and remorseless story. I’m am all here for unapologetic vengeance against abuseres and overall shitty people so I thought this story was wonderfull and had a surprisingly brighter tone that lifted the anthology after the darker introduction

Night-Tide by Tessa Gratton | ★★★★★
This was a beautifully sad and heartfelt story about love and loss. We seeJaclyn learn more about herself through Annabel’s death. But I completely felt the connection between the two and I felt Jaclyn’s pain and it being over.

The Glittering Death by Caleb Roehrig | ★★★★★
I loved how greusome this story was, it felt like an episode of some kind of crime show (which I absolutely love). We have a character fighting against an abductor who has already killed people – it’s tense and makes your heart race in the best way.

A Drop of Stolen Ink by Emily Lloyd-Jones | ★★★★☆
I thought it was nice to get a little science fiction elements introduced here to break up some of the other styles. The skin tattos and wraith/Prefect relationship was definitely intriguing, but I do think it ended too soon. I would have loved for this to be a bit more fleshed out.

Happy Days, Sweetheart by Stephanie Kuehn | ★★★☆☆
This was a retelling of The Tell-Tale Heart and all of the elements were totally there – the building resentment and cathartic release. The main characters is a better-qualifie outsider who consistently comes in second to an apathetic oponent. The parallels to the 2016 election were a little on the nose for me, but I liked the story overall.

The Raven (Remix) by Amanda Lovelace | ★☆☆☆☆
This one did absolutely nothing for me. I thought backling out Poe’s original story was a really smart idea, but it ended up being so short and the message was better delivered in “Night-Tide” or “Lygia”

Changeling by Marieke Nijkamp | ★★★★☆
“Hop Frog” was one of Poe’s stories that I wasn’t familiar with, but it grabbed when when I read the originals in preparation for the retellings. I loved how magic, the Fae, and revenge were woven into this story that showcased solidarity.

The Oval Filter by Lamar Giles | ★★★☆☆ (3.5 Stars)
Tariq is recovering from a football injury and is still mourning the unexepcted (and unsolved death) of his girlfriend, Courtney. We’re with him as he starts to see her reappear on social media (after all of her accounts were deleted. The reveal is weak, but I liked Tariq’s journey.

Red by Hillary Monahan | ★★★★☆
I liked this story, but if was so short. We could have easily had another 100 pages to really flesh out the world. But our main character has some sort of magic or power that other fear and uses that to her advantage. It’s a story about asserting yourself into where others reject you and demanding you belong. It was empowering.

Lygia by Dahlia Adler | ★★★★★
This was a hauntingly beautiful story reminising about a lost love. There’s realy not much else to say about it, besides the fact that I loved it.

The Fall of the Bank of Usher by Fran Wilde | ★★☆☆☆
I don’t know if I was getting reading fatigue, but this one was a little hard to follw. I get the overall structure, but I feel like the smaller details were lost on me. THis story followed sibling hackers and thiefs as they try and steal from an impenetrable bank.

The Murders in the Rue Apartelle, Boracay by Rin Chupeco | ★★★☆☆ (3.5 Stars)
I thought this story has possibly the best potential. If this was a full length novel, I’d 100% want to pick it up. The writing style was different that all the other stories – it was like a letter written to you so there was in instant personal connection, and I loved the Filipino culture included.


Overall this anthology was great and I had a lot more hits than misses. If you’re even a casual fan of Poe, I think you’d enjoy this.

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