The Dangers of Smoking in Bed
⭐⭐⭐⭐ 4 out of 5 stars
Title: The Dangers of Smoking in Bed
Author: Mariana Enriquez
Length: 165 pages
This collection of short stories was one of the most original writing I had ever read. It was weird and creepy or macabre at some points, but it was mesmerising. In this book, a dead baby followed a family member, a neighbourhood was cursed for the lack of kindness, a woman was obsessed with the sound of a heartbeat, teenage girls played at conjuring ghosts while others exhumed the body of their idol…
I was fascinated by Mariana Enriquez’s fiction. The stories are unusual, scary and surprising. The real and the unreal are intertwined and hard to separate. The themes include the female body, sexuality, fetish, illness, paranormal activity and cannibalism. My favourite story was Kids Who Come Back. Mechi, the main character, works in an archive full of documents about the missing children. She gets involved in their stories and is overjoyed when she finds one of the teenagers in the city square. Soon, many more children appear, but there is something wrong with them all…
Those stories are not for everyone. They include contents that might be triggering for some readers. The way the real world blends with the macabre is quite disturbing. On the other hand, this book has no disgusting or gruesome detailed descriptions. I would recommend it to fans of unusual and creepy fiction.