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The lowest Final Girl 2021 Support Group outlet sale

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THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

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 bestselling 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.

Review

The Final Girl Support Group sizzles with action, originality, and a gleaming concept sharp as a scalpel.”— Charlaine Harris, #1 New York Times bestselling author

"Pray for morning, wish for speed, and be as quiet as you can, it doesn''t matter—Grady Hendrix''s The Final Girl Support Group already knows where you live and breathe."— Stephen Graham Jones, New York Times bestselling author of The Only Good Indians

“A great read…[Hendrix] excels at writing horror humor… His characters are funny and real, though at least one will definitely lose a limb at some point…Though the final girls’ plight has all the scares of great horror fiction, there is an element of truth in their situation that will be recognizable to anyone who has experienced real trauma.” – The New York Times

"Equal parts thrilling and darkly funny." - Time

“A savvy summer slasher … continues his winning run of meta horror novels…a wickedly entertaining page-turner.” USA Today

“It’s not necessary to be a fan of slasher movies to enjoy this very clever, gleefully violent, self-aware deconstruction of the genre.” - The Guardian

“Grady Hendrix has demonstrated a remarkable facility for suspense…With his latest work, The Final Girl Support Group, he’s turned that talent into a nearly book-length workout, an exercise in go-go acceleration that steps on the gas soon after it begins and doesn’t stop until the final pages.” The A.V. Club

"A darkly clever take on the horror genre''s most infamous trope. "– Elle

The Final Girl Support Group is funny, scary, and a roaring good time. Grady Hendrix puts his own spin on final girls and I loved it.”— Samantha Downing, USA Today bestselling author of My Lovely Wife

"Take slasher movie adoration, critique, and satire, mix with compelling, flawed characters and neck-breaking plot twists, and drop it all into an industrial blender with large blades. Voilà, you now have Grady''s maniacally clever and compulsively readable The Final Girl Support Group."— Paul Tremblay, national bestselling author of Survivor Song

“Dissects slasher obsession with cutting humor and heart.” Bloody Disgusting

“A wildly entertaining romp through the conventions of horror’s slasher film subgenre…Hendrix masterfully evokes the paranoid existences of his diverse cast in the aftermath of their traumatic ordeals, and he so explicitly details the massacres and fictional film sagas that grew out of them that readers may believe them to be real. The result is a wonderfully suspenseful and darkly comic novel that cleverly subverts popular culture. Horror fans will be wowed.”— Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"If you grew up on a diet of ''80s slasher movies, The Final Girl Support Group is the book you''ve been waiting for...Clever, fast-paced horror comedy." — Oprah Daily

" The Final Girl Support Group is a deft examination of how our culture''s obsession with misogynistic violence destroys the lives of women and how those women are able to keep fighting and living after unthinkable trauma. The beating heart of this book is empathy and it''s set into a lightning-paced, vicious thriller. Reading it was a catharsis. Absolutely unmissable. Horror fans... you''ve never read a slasher like this."— Mallory O''Meara, national bestselling author of The Lady from the Black Lagoon

“With The Final Girl Support Group Grady Hendrix transforms a horror trope into something bloody original. An incisive examination of society''s obsession with violence against women that simultaneously honors and roasts the slasher genre with equal prowess. Wildly entertaining and clever as hell.”— Rachel Harrison, author of The Return

“Grady Hendrix’s canny new novel, The Final Girl Support Group, gathers all the tropes and iconography of a decade’s worth of slasher movies, throws them into a blender with much more wit and intelligence than any of those movies displayed, in a truly original, compelling, suspenseful tour de force… with a knowing wink. Hendrix has a rare, unique voice in a genre sorely in need of more!" —Mick Garris, writer and director (The Stand, Bag of Bones, The Shining miniseries)

"A crazy emotional roller coaster ride that took me right back to 1980, but it needs a warning label: may cause severe anxiety, suggest reading with CBD and a glass of wine." —Adrienne King, actress, artist, and Friday the 13th’s first Final Girl

" The Final Girl Support Group is perfect for anyone who loves old slasher movies and, oddly enough, anyone who hates them. Grady Hendrix has somehow crafted both an homage to B-horror schlock and a clever dissection of the genre, all delivered in the form of one long breathless chase punctuated by both unpredictable twists and thoughtful insight."— David Wong, New York Times bestselling author of John Dies at the End

"A (bloody) valentine to the slasher franchises of the VHS era, but also a smart novel about survivor guilt and the concept of the enduring heroine."— Kim Newman, author of Anno Dracula

About the Author

Grady Hendrix is an award-winning novelist and screenwriter living in New York City. He is the author of Horrorstör, My Best Friend’s Exorcism (which is being adapted into a feature film by Amazon Studios), We Sold Our Souls, and the New York Times bestseller The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires (currently being adapted into a TV series). Grady also authored the Bram Stoker Award–winning nonfiction book Paperbacks from Hell, a history of the horror paperback boom of the seventies and eighties, and his latest non-fiction book is These Fists Break Bricks: How Kung Fu Movies Swept America and Changed the World.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

The Final Girl Support Group

I wake up, get out of bed, say good morning to my plant, unwrap a protein bar, and drink a liter of bottled water. I''m awake for five full minutes before remembering I might die today. When you get old, you get soft.

In the living room I stretch and do forty knee strikes, forty palm heel strikes, and side mountain climbers until sweat drips onto the concrete floor. I do elbow strikes until my shoulders burn, then I get on the treadmill, put the speed up to seven, and run until my thighs are on fire and my chest rasps, and then I run for five more minutes. I have to punish myself for forgetting exactly what the stakes are, especially today.

The bathroom door gets padlocked from the inside while I shower. I make up my bed to eliminate the temptation to crawl back in. I make tea, and it''s not until the electric kettle clicks that I have my first panic attack of the day.

It''s not a bad one, just a cramp in my chest that feels like a giant hand squeezing my lungs shut. I close my eyes and concentrate on relaxing the muscles lining my throat, on taking deep breaths, on pulling oxygen into the bottom of my lungs. After two and a half minutes I can breathe normally again and I open my eyes.

This apartment is the only place in the world where that''s possible. A bedroom, a living room, a kitchen, and a bathroom where, as long as I take reasonable precautions, I can close my eyes for two minutes. Out there in the world it''s a nonstop murder party, and if I make the slightest mistake I''ll wind up dead.

I go into the living room and turn on CNN to see what the body count is today, and from the very first image I know that the next twenty-four hours will be bad.

A live drone shot of a summer camp is buried beneath all the other junk CNN puts onscreen. It shows sedans and emergency vehicles clustered outside the cabins, men in white hazmat suits walking between the trees, yellow police tape blocking the road. They cut to recorded footage of the night before, blue lights flashing in the dark, and the slugline hits me in the gut: Real Life Red Lake Tragedy Repeats.

I turn on the sound and the story is exactly what I feared. Someone murdered six Camp Red Lake counselors who were shutting the place down for the season. They used a variety of weapons-hand scythe, power drill, bow and arrows, machete-and would have had a seventh victim except the last one, a sixteen-year-old girl the CNN chyron tells me is named Stephanie Fugate, shoved them out the hayloft.

The killer hasn''t been identified yet, but there''s Stephanie onscreen in a class photo with her round face and clear skin, smiling through her braces with a grin that breaks my heart. After last night, she''ll never be that happy again. She''s a final girl now.

You''re watching a horror movie and the silent killer knocks off the stoner, the slut, the geek, the jock, and the deputy, and now he''s chasing the virgin babysitter through the woods. She''s the one who said they shouldn''t party at this deserted summer camp, break into this abandoned lunatic asylum, skinny-dip in this isolated lake-especially since it''s Halloween, or Thanksgiving, or Arbor Day, or whatever the anniversary is of those unsolved murders from way back. The killer''s got a chainsaw/boat hook/butcher''s knife and this girl''s got zip: no upper body strength, no mass, no shotgun. All she''s got is good cardio and an all-American face. Yet somehow she kills the killer, then stares numbly off into the middle distance, or collapses into the arms of the arriving police, or runs crying to her boyfriend, makes one last quip, lights one last cigarette, asks a final haunting question, gets taken off in an ambulance screaming and screaming like she''s never going to stop.

Ever wonder what happens to those final girls? After the cops eliminate them as suspects, after the press releases their brace-faced, pizza-cheeked, bad-hair-day class photos that inevitably get included on the cover of the true crime book? After the candlelight vigils and the moments of silence, after someone plants the memorial shrub?

I know what happens to those girls. After the movie deals get signed, after the film franchise fails, after you realize that while everyone else was filling out college applications you were locked in a residential treatment program pretending you weren''t scared of the dark. After the talk show circuit, after your third therapist just accepts that he''s your Zoloft-dispensing machine and you won''t be making any breakthroughs on his watch, after you realize that the only interesting thing that''ll ever happen to you happened when you were sixteen, after you stop going outside, after you start browsing locksmiths the way other women browse the windows of Tiffany''s, after you''ve left town because you couldn''t deal with the "Why not you?" looks from the parents of all your dead friends, after you''ve lost everything, been through the fire, started knowing your stalkers by their first names, after all that happens you wind up where I''m going today: in a church basement in Burbank, seated with your back to the wall, trying to hold the pieces of your life together.

We''re an endangered species, for which I''m grateful. There are only six of us still around. It used to make me sad there weren''t more of us out there, but we were creatures of the eighties and the world has moved on. They used to dust off the clip packages for our anniversaries or the occasional franchise reboot, but these days it''s all oil spills and Wikileaks, the Tea Party and the Taliban. The six of us belong to another era. We''re media invisible. We might as well not even exist.

As I turn off CNN I realize I miscounted. There are actually seven of us; I just don''t like to think about Chrissy. No one does. Even mentioning her name can mess with your head because she''s a traitor. So I take a minute, even though I only have three hours to get to group, and I take a deep breath and try to get my focus back.

Adrienne''s going to be a mess. Camp Red Lake was where it happened to her, but she bought the place later and turned it into a retreat for victims of violence, mostly survivors of school shootings and kids who got away from their kidnappers. This hits her where she lives. At least it''ll give us something new to talk about besides whatever old business we''re still arguing over today.

When I can''t put it off any longer, I get ready to head out. Group is the only time I leave this apartment except to go to the mailbox place across the street once a week, to check my escape routes once a month, and my biweekly trips to the corner store for supplies. I don''t like risk. My hair is short because long hair can get grabbed. I wear running shoes in case I have to move. I don''t wear loose clothing.

I inventory my pockets: keys, money, phone, weapons. I stopped carrying a firearm on public transport after an incident a couple of years back, but I have pepper spray, a box cutter in my right front pocket, and a razor blade taped to my left ankle. I don''t wear headphones, I don''t wear sunglasses, I make sure my jacket is tight so there''s nothing to snag, and then I say good-bye to my plant, take a deep breath, step out of my apartment, and face a world that wants me dead.

The Final Girl Support Group II

A cotton ball sheep says, Jesus Loves Ewe!

A trio of very skinny ghosts rising from the grave proclaim, Ghosts are scary . . . but not the Holy Ghost!

He is Risen! shouts a multicolored tangle of Magic Marker scribbles.

That one gives me pause. All of us in group have a complicated relationship with the idea of resurrection.

We should be sitting in a circle, but the five of us sit in a ragged C because none of us will ever put her back to a door again. Dani has her arms crossed, legs spread, sitting cowboy stoic in front of a wall of orange-and-black construction paper jack-o''-lanterns and hissing cats. She''s the last person on earth who needs a reminder that Halloween is coming.

Marilyn has her legs crossed, Starbucks in one hand, new purse in her lap because she won''t let it touch the floor. She told Julia it cost $1,135, but I don''t believe her. You can''t charge that much for a faux purse, and Marilyn would never let leather touch her skin.

"It''s hard for me to focus if I haven''t eaten," Heather is saying in her never-ending, I-haven''t-slept-since-1988 monologue, leaning forward, hands flapping around. "Because of my low blood sugar."

Apparently, today''s argument will be about snacks.

Julia sits in her wheelchair, clearly bored, drumming her fingers on her wheels, wearing an ironic World''s Greatest Dad T-shirt, staring at a large, wrinkled drawing of a flying man with his arms held straight out at his sides that reads, "Jeshus is sad dead alive."

I used to think it was weird that we met surrounded by Sunday school art, but now it''s become the first thing I look at every month after checking my sightlines and my exits. Not because the artistic self-expression of a bunch of potential murder victims interests me in the slightest. I''m looking for warning signs: pictures of exploding guns and bloody knives, boys drawing themselves as neckless monsters with triangle fangs tearing their parents in half. I''m looking for signs that one of these kids will grow up to be my enemy, to be another one of the monsters that tried to kill us all.

"If you ate before group," Dr. Carol suggests. "Maybe that would help?"

Dr. Carol, the only one in the room who can bring herself to put her back to the door, sits in the mouth of the C, like she has for the past sixteen years, posture perfect, pen poised, notepad resting on one knee, treating Heather''s snack obsession with the same care and concern she applies to everything we say.

"That''s off my schedule," Heather says. "As a recovering addict, maintaining a schedule is important to my sobriety and I have to leave the home early because, you know, the cops took my license and I haven''t gotten it back yet, so it takes me longer to get here because I think it''s important not to be late. Adrienne doesn''t have that same level of consideration, apparently."

"I''m sure Adrienne has a good reason for why she''s running behind," Dr. Carol says.

"I''ll be surprised if Adrienne shows up at all," Julia says. Clearly she saw CNN, too. "Has anyone talked to her? I tried to call but it went to voicemail."

"I imagine she''s turned her phone off," Marilyn says, then makes a face like she smells shit. "The press."

Marilyn refused to do any press conferences or give anyone an exclusive after her crisis, arousing the wrath of every reporter in America, and then she married into a mega-rich politically active Republican family, so she''s gotten it the worst over the years, but we all know the feeling. The phone that never stops ringing until you finally pull it out of the wall; the reporter you''ve never seen who calls you by your first name and pretends to have gone to high school with you so convincingly you start to believe them; a distant cousin showing up at the hospital, all full of concern, with a tape recorder spinning inside her bag next to a check from the National Enquirer.

"I don''t think it''s appropriate to discuss Adrienne''s situation with anyone but Adrienne," Dr. Carol says. "I''m sure we''ll talk about it when she gets here. In the meantime: how do people feel about Heather''s concerns?"

There''s an awkward moment as we all wait to see if anyone''s going to take the bait, but no one does. We''re final girls. We''re good at escaping traps.

"I''m just saying," Heather says, filling the awkward silence. "I have certain needs, and since I don''t have the advantages all of you do, then I would really like us to have some coffee, some cookies, something, because this big bare room is depressing."

She''s really not going to let this go, but that doesn''t surprise me. We''re the women who kept fighting back no matter how much it hurt, who jumped out that third-story window, who dragged ourselves up onto that roof when our bodies were screaming for us to roll over and die. Once we start something, it''s hard for us to stop.

"I don''t mind what Heather brings," Marilyn says, her bracelets dancing as she waves her Starbucks cup with its dark red lipstick print on the lid. "Bring a pizza. But can we please change the topic?"

"That''s interesting," Dr. Carol says, although she''s the only one who thinks so. "Does anyone else feel the way Marilyn does?"

When you''ve been in a room with the same six people for sixteen years, you know what they''re going to do before it happens. Like a chemical reaction, if certain conditions are met, certain outcomes will take place. Right on cue, here comes Julia.

"I think people eating and drinking in group is a form of deflection," Julia says, because she can''t pass up a chance to argue with Marilyn. "Marilyn''s Chai Soy Big Gulp is a prop that shows us she''s distancing herself from group."

"I declare," Marilyn fake-marvels in her flat Texas accent. "How do you come up with these things?"

"Two sessions ago you complained we were trapped in the past," Julia says.

Marilyn looks at each of us.

"Well, does anyone think this is as necessary as it used to be?" she asks. "The way we snipe and peck, I feel like we could all use a vacation. Isn''t the point of therapy that one day you don''t need it anymore?"

I feel my lungs cramp and I count breaths-seven in, seven out, keep it slow, keep it steady. She doesn''t mean that. Group is the center for all of us, even Dr. Carol. Her self-help empire is built on the work she did with us back in the nineties, but the reason we''re in this church basement and not one of her swank, camera-ready clinics is that this is our shared secret, our one safe place free from the stalkers and the superfans, the reporters and the profile writers. How can Marilyn talk so casually about giving it up?

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4.2 out of 54.2 out of 5
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Top reviews from the United States

J.K. Galecki
2.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
NOT a slasher...be warned.
Reviewed in the United States on July 14, 2021
I want to avoid spoilers, which is hard to do while discussing the numerous issues with this book. I will say it''s well-written and at least kept me reading to the end. I will ALSO say: this book is not a slasher. Instead, it is a bait and switch tactic to lure people who... See more
I want to avoid spoilers, which is hard to do while discussing the numerous issues with this book. I will say it''s well-written and at least kept me reading to the end. I will ALSO say: this book is not a slasher. Instead, it is a bait and switch tactic to lure people who love that kind of material into a lecture on violence against women and guns. This was one of my MOST anticipated books of the year. I read it in 2 days waiting for the "slashing" to start and it never did. Very disappointed, as I''m sure many slasher fans will be. I did not buy the book to be preached to, or have a genre of films that I love deconstructed to the point of trying to guilt the reader into feeling bad about enjoying them. Slasher fans beware!
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Raina
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Chaotic, Magical Negro Trope, Suffers from Saggy Middle, But Good Twist and Ending
Reviewed in the United States on July 21, 2021
I was really excited to read this after reading all of Hendrix''s other books (minus we sold our souls). He hasn''t quite captured the magic of My Best Friend''s Exorcism again, but he came close with Southern Book Club''s Guide to Slaying Vampires. The Final Girl Support Group... See more
I was really excited to read this after reading all of Hendrix''s other books (minus we sold our souls). He hasn''t quite captured the magic of My Best Friend''s Exorcism again, but he came close with Southern Book Club''s Guide to Slaying Vampires. The Final Girl Support Group has such a great premise, but unravels fairly quickly after the first 10 chapters, then picks back up in the final 5 or so.

As a black person that reads some white horror authors, I''m really over them always killing us off. Or, we exist to make white characters feel better about themselves or "champion" them. *Spoilers Ahead* What sparks the whole plot of the book is the (only) black final girl being murdered. She is described as having lived a successful life, was kind, strong, and built a retreat/camp for other survivors. Buuuuut....she''s the one who easily dies, when there''s an unstable woman battling drug addiction in the group? Oh okay. There''s also an extremely racist description of her when the protagonist is explaining how killers are particular about what they like, using a starbucks analogy: "Black nonfat camp counselor with a high threshold for pain and an extra shot". Black people having a high threshold for pain/feeling less pain than others is a racist idea that''s STILL believed that started from chattel slavery. It affects us in various ways, and even causes our death in medical settings. It was an excuse used to whip, beat, and experiment on us. Now, if hendrix meant this as commentary aka making the monster''s more monstery by way of their racism, then he did a HORRIFIC job of alluding to it. Not to mention in the next sentence he stereotyped the lesbian character as masculine/butchy and spunky. I won''t speak for the LGBT community on that front, but it seemed that she was just a copy of what the media tells us lesbians are like: Home Depot obsessed homesteading cowgirl types. The black character is imagined in ghost form to help the protagonist push forward towards the end, and I almost slapped the book closed.

Speaking of the protagonist, I liked that she was difficult to like and root for. It was a very different approach, and it felt like she had a real, multifaceted persona. I wished we got to know the other women in the group a bit more, and they disappear for far too long when the middle of the book begins; they were VERY underutilized.

This book could''ve been about 60-80 pages shorter than what it was. If a character is going to an apartment, we get every little step on the way to said apartment. Opening the door, walking down the driveway, getting in the car, driving down the road, the conversation on the way, how many stoplights there are, when they pull up to the curb of the apartment etc. It would''ve been nice to have a chapter just end and bam the next chapter starts off with the characters where they need to be.

As always, I enjoyed the "extras" in the book. Case files, newspaper articles, and other thoughtful things that made you think. I came away from this book thinking a lot about violence in our society and how obsessed we are with it, i.e. collecting murder memorabilia, and the strange new phenomenon of women on youtube doing their make up while talking about how a family was butchered. We love violence against women in particular, and we couldn''t get enough of slasher flicks at one point.

The twist was very good, and I didn''t see it coming. It''s a slog to get to that twist, though. I found myself skipping a page or two here and there, and this is the first time one of his books has suffered a sagging middle (in my opinion). At times it''s disjointed, and so many unnecessary things happen that don''t add much to the story.

I loved the way he created this world of what it''d really be like to be the final girl from these movies, all grown up. He pulls heavily from the slasher movies, and finds ways to inject some new humor into the stories. All in all, it is a decent book. Not his best, but I would place it above Horrorstor and below Southern Book Club''s Guide to Slaying Vampires.
78 people found this helpful
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Kindle Customer
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Awful!
Reviewed in the United States on July 19, 2021
I resent the positive reviews on here - they fooled me into spending money on this drivel. It''s a sloppy mess of misogyny and broken down elements of something resembling a plot. Written entirely like a man would write a woman. Just absolute JUNK. I found... See more
I resent the positive reviews on here - they fooled me into spending money on this drivel. It''s a sloppy mess of misogyny and broken down elements of something resembling a plot. Written entirely like a man would write a woman. Just absolute JUNK.

I found myself skipping ahead and missing pages. Just dragged like crazy and made NO sense.
36 people found this helpful
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C
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Creative! An amusing homage to classic Horror films, in a campy, mystery/thriller
Reviewed in the United States on July 13, 2021
The premise of this creative mystery/thriller/horror-homage, is that the sole survivors of horror movie stories (Final Girls) get together in group therapy sessions to discuss their issues, until something terrible happens.... again. This book is a very clever... See more
The premise of this creative mystery/thriller/horror-homage, is that the sole survivors of horror movie stories (Final Girls) get together in group therapy sessions to discuss their issues, until something terrible happens.... again.

This book is a very clever homage to old horror movies of the 80s and 90s, with each of the “Final Girls” being a reference to a specific character from a movie; like Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th, Halloween, Scream, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, etc. This book is really for people that are familiar with those movies, because if you haven''t seen them then you won''t get most of the references.
Fans of the genre though should instantly recognize these characters and be able to identify which movie they are from.

There are 24 total chapters, and even the chapter names are references to old horror movies, like “The Final Girl Support Group''s New Nightmare” or “The Final Girl Support Group XV: Dream Warriors”.

The story mainly follows one of the Final Girls, Lynette Tarkington, as she becomes increasingly concerned with the possibility that a killer is coming after all of Final Girls. As the plot develops, it becomes a mystery/thriller as we try to figure out who the killer actually is.

I was very familiar with all of these movies, so I really enjoyed this book. It is full of easter eggs and references to the old horror movies, and Hendrix weaves them together into a new mystery/thriller/horror story that is deliberately over-the-top, just like the old movies he is paying homage to. There are definitely scenes that are more amusing if you know where the inspiration comes from. If you have not seen these old horror movies, then this book probably just comes off as a pretty ridiculous and/or unrealistic generic thriller, and it might be pretty disappointing.

Overall, I thought that this was a clever and creative way to tell a suspense story, but again it really relies on the reader being familiar with the movies. If you haven''t seen them, then you might want to watch them first, or skip this book entirely.
21 people found this helpful
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kristen happel
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Hard to start, hard to put down.
Reviewed in the United States on July 15, 2021
First I would like to thank Mr. Hendrix for the compliment he gave medical professionals. Yes, we do often run into danger in order to save others. I started this book while sitting on a fence. I’ll let you choose the fence, since I’m feeling generous. I loved... See more
First I would like to thank Mr. Hendrix for the compliment he gave medical professionals. Yes, we do often run into danger in order to save others.

I started this book while sitting on a fence. I’ll let you choose the fence, since I’m feeling generous. I loved the opening dedication, but was worried about the story. After chapter two I was hooked. This story is much more than a spoof on horror movies. It is also respectful of life, whether you like it or not. I liked it.

Well written, well paced, and the author possesses a through knowledge of the genre. One scene did not fit in with the characters behavior pattern, and there were two medical mistakes, but other than that I found the story to be flawless.

Mr. Hendrix please tell Fine I said hi, and that when he’s big enough I would like a cutting.
12 people found this helpful
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DoomKittieKhan
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A hell of a read
Reviewed in the United States on July 20, 2021
The term "final girl" was coined by Carol J. Clover in her 1992 book ''Men, Women, and Chainsaws: Gender in the Modern Horror Film''. In it, she defined the character as the only woman left alive by the end of the movie and the only person left to tell the tales of terror... See more
The term "final girl" was coined by Carol J. Clover in her 1992 book ''Men, Women, and Chainsaws: Gender in the Modern Horror Film''. In it, she defined the character as the only woman left alive by the end of the movie and the only person left to tell the tales of terror they faced during their fight for survival.

Lynette Tarkington is worried. Paranoid even. That''s on a daily basis. But today, when she saw the news that her friend and fellow final girl, Adrienne Butler, had been murdered in her home and Adrienne''s beloved Camp Red Lake was the scene of another camp massacre, Lynette is downright freaking out. She immediately reaches out for support from Marilyn Torres, Dani Shipman, Heather DeLuca, and Julia Campbell who have been in group counseling together for years. They are all final girls. They know each other''s stories and scars. They will look out for each other. They know how to survive. However, we quickly learn that there is tension in the ranks. Some of the "girls" (now women in their mid-30s to early 50s) want to move on with their lives. Some don''t want to be labeled as "Final Girls" anymore. Hendrix gives each of these women detailed backstories without laying their trauma fresh. He shows how they were able to survive and what they have done with their lives. For example, one owns a horse sanctuary, one is a motivational speaker, one is a socialite who raises money for assorted charities. Yet all are still dealing with PTSD and rely, in some way, on the routine of their group sessions. And while Lynette is still battling with her past and unable to move on, it now seems like she is going to be left behind. What happens when desperation takes hold, someone begins picking off the final girls, and we have an unreliable narrator to boot? It''s a classic Grady Hendrix horror story.

This is a familiar story rooted in symbolism that catapults the reader to the bloody end with several comedic bumps along the way. Those that love horror movies with a final girl, and especially the ones highlighted indirectly in this book (Halloween, Friday the 13th, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Nightmare on Elm Street, and Scream) will find in Hendrix a kindred spirit. I especially loved the intertextual aspects of the book with each chapter beginning with notes from the group therapist, police reports from the final girls, passages from academic works on the nature of slashers, diary entries, and other assorted ephemera added a rich layer to the story.

''The Final Girl Support Group'' is a fun take on the archetype of the Final Girl, and a hell of a read.

Many thanks to the author, the publisher, and Edelweiss for gifting me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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Gecky Boz
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Final Girl Awesomeness
Reviewed in the United States on July 13, 2021
Do you like horror movies, if so this book is definitely for you. I love how it combined all these horror movies/tropes and gives you final girls to root for. I sped through this book because I didn''t want to put it down. It felt like the best kind of... See more
Do you like horror movies, if so this book is definitely for you. I love how it combined all these horror movies/tropes and gives you final girls to root for.

I sped through this book because I didn''t want to put it down.

It felt like the best kind of horror movie and was full of surprises and moments that''ll make you raise your eyebrows and go "Whoa."

I adore how complicated the main character is and how she never gives up.

Overall I really enjoyed the author''s style and the build up in the book. The atmosphere is intense and will have you wondering who to trust.

Then that ending was the cherry on the sundae of it all and tied everything together so very well.
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Bob Lewis
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A worthy homage to the genre
Reviewed in the United States on July 17, 2021
It''s clear Grady Hendrix loves the horror genre, both from this book and his other work. Though he certainly doesn''t shy away from criticizing the genre''s various tropes, every page is loaded with references and little nods to the slasher movies, particularly those of the... See more
It''s clear Grady Hendrix loves the horror genre, both from this book and his other work. Though he certainly doesn''t shy away from criticizing the genre''s various tropes, every page is loaded with references and little nods to the slasher movies, particularly those of the ''80s, we all know and love. For that reason alone, this is worth a read.

To be sure, it''s not perfect. Though the action starts relatively quickly, it takes about the first half of the book for it to really find its groove. In earlier chapters, far too many characters seemed unlikable and performed inexplicable actions. Not all of that gets reversed as the book carries on, but much of it does. Characters that started off unlikable begin to seem more understandable. Actions that seemed foolish start to seem integral to characters'' natures.

Perhaps the biggest warning for readers is that, though the characters and situations are drawn from slasher films, the book itself is much more of a mystery/thriller than it is a horror/slasher, which caught me a bit off guard. Similarly, the way the author plays with the line between cinematic slashers and "real world" (within the context of the novel) slashers and final girls never quite solidifies.

However, despite a few little issues here and there, Grady Hendrix certainly knows how to write a page-turner. The book will take plenty of twists and turns (some predictable and some completely unpredictable). And even though it''s not a horror novel per se, it''s clearly written by a horror author and for horror fans.
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Lucy Rule
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Worth picking up but don''t expect too much from the plot.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 18, 2021
Okay, so if people don''t want to see a full review, I would reccomend reading it for certain chapters alone. The world is so well built and if you like horror it lets you indulge as well as examine the tropes within the genre. The plot is secondary to this which is great...See more
Okay, so if people don''t want to see a full review, I would reccomend reading it for certain chapters alone. The world is so well built and if you like horror it lets you indulge as well as examine the tropes within the genre. The plot is secondary to this which is great because it''s weak in places. Okay now a detailed review. Having read all other works by G.H I was super excited to see the release of ''The Final Girls Support Group''. The concept is unique, fun and an interesting parody of the slasher film. The writing was brilliant in lots of different ways. When it wanted me to feel scared, I did. When it wanted me to feel heartbroken, I did. The characters were mostly compelling though some felt a little shallow and underdeveloped. The plot for the majority was well paced and gripping. Then the end happened. I like that the book ends up on such a high note but it felt like it touched on a lot of stuff that was just never explained or expanded on. The ending felt a little hollow. The motive of the big bad is explained in a few sentences after the fact and just doesn''t seem to justify the actions they took. I feel like the book had some great concepts and ideas. The worldbuilding was detailed and interesting. However, a lot of the worldbuilding was bought in as if it would play into the big bad and then just kind of didn''t. There is also definitely room for a work exploring the Dream King. I hope there is otherwise it''s just like oh Lovecraft stuff exists in this universe too, no reason tho. To end on a positive, I loved the design of the book and the constant examination of the final girl as a concept that is prominent in horror media. Worth picking up!
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S. Gill
2.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Very disappointing
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 22, 2021
After the glory of the Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires, I couldn’t wait for this book. Boy, what a let down. The concept was original, but didn’t really work well. There was no sense of camaraderie between the characters, and the main protagonist Lynette had...See more
After the glory of the Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires, I couldn’t wait for this book. Boy, what a let down. The concept was original, but didn’t really work well. There was no sense of camaraderie between the characters, and the main protagonist Lynette had no likeable qualities. I preferred the character “Fine,” her potted house plant. 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.
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L. Young
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Solid take on the "final girl" concept
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 22, 2021
A really good, engrossing take on the "final girl" concept. Loved the parallels with the slasher genre, and the whole "what happens after the slashing stops" theme. Loved the side parts between each chapter - snippets of interviews, books, etc. I found the main character...See more
A really good, engrossing take on the "final girl" concept. Loved the parallels with the slasher genre, and the whole "what happens after the slashing stops" theme. Loved the side parts between each chapter - snippets of interviews, books, etc. I found the main character completely irritating - understood the reasons behind it so wasn''t a massive problem but sometimes she was a bit too eye roll inducing. The ending? Well it wasn''t fantastic and its the reason it''s getting 4 and not 5 stars, but it did keep me guessing to the end. Thoroughly enjoyed and a worthwhile read.
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Amazon Customer
2.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Eh?
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 19, 2021
I knew this wasn’t going to be a breathtaking work of literature, but good lord. As a massive horror geek i was super excited about the concept of this book, but the writing has just really let it down. It spends a lot of the story explaining the story and the characters...See more
I knew this wasn’t going to be a breathtaking work of literature, but good lord. As a massive horror geek i was super excited about the concept of this book, but the writing has just really let it down. It spends a lot of the story explaining the story and the characters rather than letting us discover things as we go along. Feels like it was written specifically for people who don’t already know what a Final Girl is. Within the first 50 pages the main character has said ‘i am a Final Girl’ about 12 times. The idea of this is brilliant, but I then read the writer saying that they essentially pulled it out of a drawer after not being able to sell it when their publisher/agent said ‘have you got anything ready to go?’ and they then reworked it and put it out. You can tell. Very clearly written with selling the film rights in mind.
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GJP
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Another winner from Grady Hendrix
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 15, 2021
The publication of a new Grady Hendrix novel is always a red letter day for me, and I was particularly excited about The Final Girl Support Group given the subject matter. While this latest addition to Hendrix''s bibliography lacks the biting (pardon the pun) social...See more
The publication of a new Grady Hendrix novel is always a red letter day for me, and I was particularly excited about The Final Girl Support Group given the subject matter. While this latest addition to Hendrix''s bibliography lacks the biting (pardon the pun) social commentary of predecessor The Southern Book Club Guide to Slaying Vampires (though discussion of the impact of violence and trauma remains a constant thread throughout), it''s an undeniably addictive page-turner - personally, I devoured the whole book within a single day. Slasher movie aficionados will delight in the references to franchises of yore, both mainstream and comparatively obscure (I''m not sure Silent Night, Deadly Night has ever influenced a work of mainstream literature before) while casual readers will quickly find themselves swept up in the mystery and tension of the central narrative. The trademark Hendrix wit and humour is also present and correct throughout, making this a recommended read for anybody that enjoys a fast-paced thriller.
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