The Final Girl Support Group Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
The Instant New York Times Best Seller
A Good Morning America Buzz Pick
“The horror master...puts his unique spin on slasher movie tropes.” (USA Today)
A can't-miss summer read, selected by The New York Times, Oprah Daily, Time, USA Today, The Philadelphia Inquirer, CNN, LitHub, BookRiot, Bustle, Popsugar, and the New York Public Library
In horror movies, the final girls are the ones left standing when the credits roll. They made it through the worst night of their lives...but what happens after?
Like his best-selling novel The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires, Grady Hendrix’s latest is a fast-paced, frightening, and wickedly humorous thriller. From chain saws to summer camp slayers, The Final Girl Support Group pays tribute to and slyly subverts our most popular horror films - movies like The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, A Nightmare on Elm Street, and Scream.
Lynnette Tarkington is a real-life final girl who survived a massacre. For more than a decade, she’s been meeting with five other final girls and their therapist in a support group for those who survived the unthinkable, working to put their lives back together. Then one woman misses a meeting, and their worst fears are realized - someone knows about the group and is determined to rip their lives apart again, piece by piece.
But the thing about final girls is that no matter how bad the odds, how dark the night, how sharp the knife, they will never, ever give up.
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|Listening Length||13 hours and 49 minutes|
|Audible.ca Release Date||July 13 2021|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #2,361 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#77 in Psychological Thrillers (Audible Books & Originals)
#87 in Horror Fiction (Audible Books & Originals)
#144 in Suspense (Audible Books & Originals)
Top reviews from Canada
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Hendrix casually adds depth to every scene he writes with dry humour and off-hand comments that simultaneously worldbuild, give insight into characters and their motivations, propel the plot forward, and send me into a fit of giggles. For instance, Lynette, the hero of the story, keeps a gun in her fanny pack. The imagery of this alone still puts a goofy grin on my face, and I finished reading this book days ago.
The book is also chock full of socio-political commentary, though not so much that it feels preachy. For instance, parts of the story are poking fun at the media’s obsession with tragedy. There’s commentary on the 80s slasher flicks and how they skew towards an anti-feminist message. Between each chapter we’re treated to an epistolary-style snippet from a variety of sources, from support group notes to police interviews and book excerpts written on the Final Girls. These snippets, while not necessary to read to enjoy the story, provide insight into the world that Hendrix has created, giving us backstory without bogging down the pacing of the present-day events. These snippets are a bit more obvious with the messaging, somewhat like taking a sledgehammer to your head with commentary on the impact of horror movies on society.
Each of the women of the Final Girl Support Group are former final girls--getting up there in age--and they all have trauma that they’ve been dealing with in group for the last sixteen years. As I mentioned earlier in this review, this book is incredibly meta, and it’s obvious that certain women come from pasts eerily similar to those of final girls from real-life 80s slasher flicks. Scream, Friday the 13th, Nightmare on Elm Street, the Texas Chainsaw Massacre… There are countless easter eggs that had the horror fan in me squealing in delight (For example, Julia Campbell is clearly inspired by Neve Campbell’s character in Scream).
Each of the Final Girls have been dealing with the aftermath of their attacks in different ways, which is dark and gritty and adds a bit of realism to an otherwise humorous and light horror story.
The entire book is told from Lynette’s point of view. Lynette is a fascinating protagonist--almost an anti-hero. She’s a final girl, though we’re informed early on by one of the other women in her support group that she isn’t a “true” final girl. She’s incredibly flawed. She’s paranoid to the point where you know the life she’s created for herself lacks any pleasures. She has her plant “Final Plant”, which she’s nicknamed “Fine”, who she talks to. And it talks back. While this all adds quite a bit of comedy to this horror comedy, it’s also incredibly sad, and I couldn’t help but root for her the entire storyline, despite her flaws. Lynnette is self-centered and a coward. Her character arc over the span of the book is quite well done, but I can’t say more about it, at the risk of spoiling major plot developments.
I highly recommend this book to all horror fans, as it has a unique premise, an incredible writing style, and a fast-paced, compelling plot.
*Thank you to the publisher, Netgalley, and the author for the ebook to review*
The Final Girl Support Group has a fabulous premise: all of our favorite slasher movies are based on true life stories and the survivors get together to help move on with their lives (there is no getting over those events). Each of these characters is damaged or “broken” in her own way, a way reminiscent of my favorite Nordic noir character (I love myself some damaged characters).
It’s not that I wanted The Final Girl Support Group to be The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires (I already read that book), but I found that it was missing something in the style or presentation, a factor that I was anticipating. Where was the comic relief?
Hendrix is an exceptional author, one who can artfully mix laughs and scares into a perfect story. The Final Girl Support Group was missing that. Maybe that was intentional, perhaps Hendrix wanted to set a more dramatic, suspenseful atmosphere, but I missed that aspect of his writing in this book.
Hendrix did fill this story with unexpected twists and turns, keeping the who of the who-done-it a guessing game right up until the bloody end.
Top reviews from other countries
Worth picking up!
Ultimately I couldn’t really understand what motivated any of the killings, yes a little far-fetched is ok, but this book didn’t really hold together in any way. Such a shame.
Had to give one star at this time as only had 2 chapters worth to base my opinion!
Update - I seem to be unable to purchase another Kindle version of this book as I now only am given the option to ‘read’ when I try & don’t want to fork out the extra cost for the hardback version - guess I’ll need to purchase from another retailer!
The characters of the final girls are woefully under-developed and the confusion obviously affects the author. These ladies will be approaching middle age but the author has them acting like the wilful teens they once were.
The whole novel feels pedestrian and the main protagonist is unlikeable and generally useless.