[Book Review]: M. Rickert’s Lucky Girl, How I Became A Horror Writer

Katelyn Nelson
2 min readSep 3, 2022

When comfort and terror bleed together.

Can you hear the ringing of the bell?

Horror is always at its best for me when it sneaks up on you. The dread in the back of your mind that builds and lingers until its hands are firmly wrapped around you, cutting off your sense of safety. Horror novellas are uniquely adept at this craft; they must strike faster than their lengthier counterparts in order to snare you well. The best of them still pack a surprise punch, even when you think you’ve got it all figured out.

Mary Rickert’s bite size Krampus story, Lucky Girl, How I Became A Horror Writer, is a slick and visceral winter tale sure to leave its mark. Partly a cautionary tale about the ways the relationships we build traditions around grow flimsy with age and how easily the social masks we use to maintain appearances can slip off into shadows, Lucky Girl is remarkably quick on its feet constructing a series of untrustworthy characters. In a house filled with strangers guised as acquaintances, how do you tell the monsters apart from the friends?

At just 112 pages and framed in classical holiday tradition of gathering to tell stories by the fire, Lucky Girl is the perfect single-serving size for a bitter winter’s night. Don’t let its mini stature fool you. Rickert came for blood, and blood she shall have. Bursting with twists to its final gasp, Lucky Girl is both a testament to horror as comfort and a perfect rug-pulling slasher sure to leave its claw marks on your imagination.

Just be careful of any bells…

I would like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to receive an advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Lucky Girl hits shelves on September 13, 2022 from Macmillan-Tor/Forge.



Katelyn Nelson

Katelyn Nelson’s writing interests lean mostly toward pop culture analysis and representation. She tweets @24th_Doctor, mostly about horror.