Review: Cautionary Tales for Excitable Girls by Anne Casey-Hardy

Award winning short story writer Anne Casey-Hardy never fails to awe the reader in her debut collection of stories, Cautionary Tales For Excitable Girls. Blending the inner and outer lives of each of her protagonists, the author never fails to surprise, and kept me turning pages all the way to the end. It didn't matter whether I was reading about a pair of teenagers who had abducted a baby, a young woman who was employed by a drug outreach service that had something more sinister going on, or a character haunted by the murder of a child that happened in their town, each time I found myself wanting more.

I found each of these stories to be well written, and haunting. My personal favourite was New Years Eve which was about a teenage party down by the creek that goes very wrong. The author is adept on playing on the fears of every day people, and blending the imagined inner worlds of the characters with the outer world. In some ways, the collection reminded me a little of The Yellow Wallpaper. Not because the stories were the same--because it brought back that same feeling of fear and wonder that I experienced when I read The Yellow Wallpaper so many years ago as a student.

Overall, an excellent collection.

Recommended.

Thank you to Simon and Schuster Australia for my ARC of Cautionary Tales For Excitable Girls.

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