BOOKISH MONSTER BENDER feat. REIMAGINED VENGEFUL WOMEN

I love retellings! And writing them is so much more fun!

So when I saw the prompt for today’s Blogoween prompt, I was excited to participate! Today’s prompt title is Bookish Monster Bender. The objective is to do a monster bender version of book characters. Fun, right? I knew I wanted to re-imagine some of female characters in books, two of whom I wanted to give a sort of “redemption” plot to. I was inspired by Anne Sexton’s Lady Lazarus to re-imagine these characters as vengeful women but with a horror twist!

Related post WHY AREN’T THERE MORE “BAD WOMEN” WRITTEN IN LITERATURE? 

So I hope you enjoy these little re-tellings and if you ever want more or another you’d like to read about, let me know in the comments!

This week’s host is Camilla from Reader in the Attic whose Bookish Monster Bender post features The Lunar Chronicles, and The Raven Cycle!

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Peel off the napkin   
O my enemy.   
Do I terrify?——
The nose, the eye pits, the full set of teeth?   
The sour breath
Will vanish in a day.
Soon, soon the flesh
The grave cave ate will be   
At home on me
And I a smiling woman.   
I am only thirty.
And like the cat I have nine times to die.
[…]
Out of the ash
I rise with my red hair   
And I eat men like air.
Lady Lazarus, Anne Sexton
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ROMEO & JULIET by WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE

They shut her up when she told them she could hear the sky calling. Her beautiful feathers were torn from her arms. Innocent, darling Juliet they called her, cajoling her rage until one day…

She wakes from the crypt, hair tinged red from loss; her skin, cloying, with the scent of her once beloved.  Verona is trembling with grief. She feels it beneath the soles of her feet as she walks through the streets, unrecognized. She will use this just like she used him. These men and their honor, oh, how they die for it.

Her laughter carries into the night like fireflies. Their innocent, darling Juliet has turned into a plague. Listen, Hades is calling. Her smile is no longer a smile and that’s alright, for she has her wings and the hellfire beneath it.

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NANCY DREW by CAROLYN KEENE

Why don’t you smile?

Sleuthing was fine until Nancy had to deal with men who worried more about her lack of charm than her critical thinking. It didn’t matter if she could take down a person two times her size, or that she could decipher codes like it was her second language. No, her clientele were more worried about the length of her skirt and the abrasive tone of her voice.

You’re not like other girls, they tell her, as if that’s meant to be a compliment. 

So when Nancy comes across a spiteful little demon, who offers her infinite power, Nancy only shrugs.

“Just give me the power to protect the vulnerable.” She says, smiling when a satisfied purr rumbles from within her chest – the demon’s new home.

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 TESS D’UBERVILLES by THOMAS HARDY

Tess decided she didn’t want to be dead. So when the angel came for her Tess plucked the halo from its head and broke it into a scythe. You will be tainted forever, the angel told her. Its humanity painfully etched across its face. Tess only shrugged and offered it the other half of the halo.

What did she care for being blighted. Tess had been kind, and good, and loving, and dead before they put her in the ground.

She need not be kind anymore. She does not think of kindness when a man raises his fist to a child. Instead, she dances into his mind, picks up a hammer with his hand, and beats his skull in. The pain that rolls through her soul is a small payment.

Once she had held her silence, confusing suffering with love and obedience with duty. There is no remorse when Tess brings her sycthe down on parents who bruise their children, on men who play god with their wives.

She lights up the sky with a broken halo, and gathers the lost  with her human angel. Pure woman be damned.

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Name a female character who deserved better! Which book would you enjoy reading a horror version of?

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