A review by rorikae
Ring Shout, by P. Djèlí Clark

adventurous dark emotional reflective tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes


'Ring Shout' by  P. Djeli Clark mixes fantasy, horror, and the monstrosity of racism in 1900s America to create an engaging story that feels much more expansive than its novella length. 
Maryse Boudreaux hunts Ku Kluxes, monsters that parade as members of the Ku Klux Klan. With her friends and a group of resistance fighters, she is determined to wipe out these creatures. When they learn about a showing of Birth of a Nation that will call a new demon into their lands, Maryse and her friends cook up a plan to take out the group once and for all. 
P. Djeli Clark continues to be one of my favorite novella writers. His ability to create such an expansive, evocative world in such a short amount of words is truly unparalleled. Each of his stories are unique from one another and yet they all suck you in and spin a full fledged narrative even with few words. This is true for 'Ring Shout' as well. 
Through flashbacks and more fantastical experiences, Clark fleshes out Maryse as a character. We come to know and understand her strengths and her weaknesses as she is directly dealing with them. One of the strengths of this story is the balance between the true to life horrors of America during the early 1900s with the fantastical elements that Clark uses to elevate this horror. The mix of folklore, body horror, and badass fight scenes create a story that is fast paced but also full and complete. The ending leaves itself open for a sequel that I hope Clark will write. His worldbuilding shows that there is even more to this world that we could explore. 

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