Horror Corner: October 2023

Horror Corner

Vampires Are Gay

By Nikita Imafidon

Vampires are gay. There’s no other way to slice, dice, or bite it. Which means that the sapphic vampire romance A Long Time Dead by Samara Breger is a welcome addition to the dark and foggy creatures of the night canon. It’s 1837, and rambunctious sex worker Poppy wakes up in a large manor far from her London home. The stuffy and mysterious Roisin is the only one there to welcome her to her new world of subsisting on rabbit blood and no longer feeling the seeping winter’s cold. While this book has opulent queer parties, found family, and grumpy and sunshine-style romance, there are threats lurking. Roisin’s dark past is following her, and not all vampires value the autonomy of others.

In the modern world of vampires, the comedy horror movie Bit (2019) follows Laurel, a trans girl finding herself in L.A. with only her brother to guide her. It’s not long before she meets a group of young queer women with angry, vibrant energy. They soon reveal themselves as feminist vampires looking to destroy toxic masculinity in the grungy city streets. While traumatized leader Duke asserts that men only use vampirism for control and power, Laurel must decide how to handle the fact that perhaps the issue is greater than gender.

While both of these creature features have their fair share of blood and some fighting, they still feel cozy. When I want to feel extra cozy at this time of year, I make mulled wine. Start with pouring any bottle of red wine (or white for a lighter taste) to a large pot. Add a handful of whole cloves, juice of half an orange, one or two cinnamon sticks, anise seed, and brandy to the pot. You can even add some apple cider for an extra boost of fall flavor.

Bring the pot to a low simmer (don’t let it boil!) over medium heat before turning it to low-medium heat and letting it warm together for at least 15 minutes and up to 2 hours. Strain out your cloves and cinnamon, and garnish your mugs with fresh orange slices!

Nikita Imafidon (she/her) is the sidelines buyer and a co-owner of the Raven Book Store. She has been a bookseller for three and a half years, and she is an avid reader of graphic novels, social science books, and strange fiction. She is a Black queer embroidery artist with a passion for ephemeral communication, community building, and social justice. Find her work on Instagram at @nikita.the.star

A Long Time Dead By Samara Breger Cover Image
ISBN: 9781612942650
Availability: In stock at our distributor’s warehouse; will be at the Raven in 3-10 bus. days! More at ravenbookstore.com/ordering-faqs
Published: Bywater Books - May 16th, 2023

Samara Breger's A Long Time Dead is a lush, Victorian romance, drenched in blood and drama, about the lengths two women will go to secure a love that cannot die.

Somewhere foggy, 1837 . . .