His Hideous Heart || Poe Re-Tellings


Title: His Hideous Heart
Author: edited by Dahlia Adler
Page Count: 480 pages
Genre: Fantasy // Young Adult
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★
Publisher: Flatiron Books
Release Date: September 10, 2019
Buy It: Chapters Indigo







Thirteen of YA’s most celebrated names reimagine Edgar Allan Poe’s most surprising, unsettling, and popular tales for a new generation.

Edgar Allan Poe may be a hundred and fifty years beyond this world, but the themes of his beloved works have much in common with modern young adult fiction. Whether the stories are familiar to readers or discovered for the first time, readers will revel in Edgar Allan Poe’s classic tales, and how they’ve been brought to life in 13 unique and unforgettable ways.

Contributors include Kendare Blake (reimagining “Metzengerstein”), Rin Chupeco (“The Murders in the Rue Morge”), Lamar Giles (“The Oval Portrait”), Tessa Gratton (“Annabel Lee”), Tiffany D. Jackson (“The Cask of Amontillado”), Stephanie Kuehn (“The Tell-Tale Heart”), Emily Lloyd-Jones (“The Purloined Letter”), Hillary Monahan (“The Masque of the Red Death”), Marieke Nijkamp (“Hop-Frog”), Caleb Roehrig (“The Pit and the Pendulum”), and Fran Wilde (“The Fall of the House of Usher”).




Short stories have really grown on me in the past 2 years. I never used to read them but now I look forward to them. They’re great to read in between reads or a short story here and there when you’re in the mood for a shorter read.

When I heard about His Hideous Heart I knew I had to read it! Gothic re-tellings of Poe’s poetry?! I’m here for it. Poe is classic. Poe is the poet. Pun intended. These authors did a great job with his stories. They took the classics and put their own vision of it, added their own diversity and unique takes.

I do wish with any retellings that the original is included at the end or a portion of it is included just to give the reader reference in case they haven’t read the original. But this is standard for me across all re-tellings.

The two renditions that stood out to me were the following.

Kendare Blake’s opening story was my favourite. I loved her take on “Metzegengerstein and the dark vibes true to Blake’s style.

Tessa Gratton did her own take on “Annabel Lee” and I loved her writing. I kept getting goosebumps. Gratton turned a very famous poem into a queer romance set in a time where such a relationshiip would not be accepted, perhaps such a time as when Poe was alive. Really well done!

If you’re a fan of Poe and short stories I recommend you give this book a try. Thank you Raincoast Books for sending an ARC my way in exchange for an honest review. 

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