The Poison Eaters & Other Stories

9781931520638 · Big Mouth House · Now available in epub, mobi, and lit formats.

Pick your poison: Vampires, devils, werewolves, faeries, or . . . ? Find them all here in Holly Black’s amazing first collection.

Read a story now:The Coldest Girl in Coldtown

* “Black’s first story collection assures her place as a modern fantasy master…. Sly humor, vivid characters, each word perfectly chosen: These stories deserve reading again and again.”
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

In her debut collection, New York Times best-selling author Holly Black returns to the world of Tithe in two darkly exquisite new tales. Then Black takes readers on a tour of a faerie market and introduces a girl poisonous to the touch and another who challenges the devil to a competitive eating match. These stories have been published in anthologies such as 21 Proms, The Faery Reel, and The Restless Dead, and have been reprinted in many “Best of ” anthologies. The Poison Eaters is Holly Black’s much-anticipated first collection, and her ability to stare into the void—and to find humanity and humor there—will speak to young adult and adult readers alike.

“Black (the Good Neighbors series) proves equally adept at urban fantasy and more traditional fairy tales, and her stories often feature the edgy sexuality and angst that have become her trademarks.”
Publishers Weekly

Praise for Holly Black’s books:

“Black’s series [is] considered to have kick-started the fairy trend in young adult fantasy.”
NY Times Book Review

“Gritty, grim, and fabulous—Holly is a master of dark magic and dark reality!”
—Tamora Pierce (author of Bloodhound)

“Holly Black is the Real Thing: a gifted writer with a solid grounding in what matters. Her stories are dark and splendid blooms rising from roots sunk deep in myth and tradition.”
—Ellen Kushner (author of The Privilege of the Sword)

“Simply put, Holly Black is one of our best writers. Enchanting and edgy, yes, but it’s the big heart in her stories that brings me back to her writing, time and again. Reading a new book by Holly is like meeting up with an old friend. They might be a little messed up from the last time you saw them, they might have some serious drama going on in their lives, but the connection is immediate, and when they’re packing up to head off again, you don’t want to let them go.”
—Charles de Lint (author of The Blue Girl)

“Dark, edgy, beautifully written, and compulsively readable, this is sure to be a word-of-mouth hit with teens.”

“An unusually powerful YA contemporary fantasy, and an outstanding first novel.”

“Debauchery, despair, deceit, and grisly death–what more could you ask from a fairy tale?”
Kirkus Reviews

“Dark, edgy fantasy.”
School Library Journal

Table of Contents

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown
A Reversal of Fortune
The Boy Who Cried Wolf
The Night Market
The Dog King
In Vodka Veritas
The Coat of Stars
Paper Cuts Scissors
Going Ironside
The Land of Heart’s Desire
The Poison Eaters

Holly Black is the author of Tithe: A Modern Faerie Tale (an ALA Best Book for Young Adults) and two related novels, Valiant (Norton Award winner, an ALA Best Book for Young Adults, an ALA Quick Pick for Reluctant Young Adult Readers, CCBC Choices) and Ironside, as well as a new novel, White Cat. She and Tony DiTerlizzi created the best-selling Spiderwick Chronicles. She is working on a graphic novel series, The Good Neighbors, with artist Ted Naifeh. She and her husband, Theo, live in Massachusetts.

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