Crow Face, Doll Face by Carly Holmes – released by Honno Welsh Women’s Press in October 2023.

A story full of strangeness and extraordinary twists, games and trickery, Crow Face, Doll Face explores being forced to live with the consequences of the decisions we make and the fantasies we construct to soothe ourselves when the life we live falls far short of the life we planned.

Unhappily married mother of four, Annie is drowning in domestic servitude. She often wonders what her life could have been had she not had children, but when her youngest daughters perform a seemingly impossible act of levitation, her life is touched with magic and she realises that her girls are truly special and that she must protect them. Eventually Annie musters the courage to leave the wreck of her marriage, but she commits a terrible, unthinkable, unmotherly act along the way.

Carly Holmes lives and writes on the banks of the river Teifi, west Wales. Her debut novel The Scrapbook was shortlisted for the International Rubery Book Award, and her Literary Strange short story collection Figurehead was published in limited edition hardback by Tartarus Press, and reprinted in paperback by Parthian Books. Her prize-winning short prosehas appeared in journals and anthologies such as Ambit, The Ghastling, The Lonely Crowd, and has twice been selected for The Best Horror of the Year.