dying with her cheerpants onDying With Her Cheer Pants On is a collection of interconnected stories about a supernatural cheering squad. They live in one of those towns that’s always on the brink of destruction, but disaster is always averted and no one is any the wiser. Except that cheerleaders go missing on a scarily regular basis. It’s best not to ask questions.

There are vampires, zombies, wendigos, a girl with super strength, another with the power of suggestion, demi-goddesses, and a mysterious cheer contest that involves “survivors”. Sometimes, there’s even a home game to cheer at.

There are also aliens. The book opens with a previous squad being annihilated during an alien invasion, which passes the captain baton—or more precisely The Handbook—to Jude. Next come try-outs, and Jude’s girls tend to live longer than previous cheerleaders, unless they betray the team of course.

The cheerleaders are more than just peppy savers-of-the-world, they embody the school spirit, which is part of the reason they’re able to do what they do. There’s also a story about another embodiment of an abstract concept, and I think that was my favourite of the bunch.

Because they were first published separately, sometimes there is a bit of repetition when reading it cover-to-cover, but overall it worked well. The stories generally were about characters I had already been introduced to, so there was no feeling of starting over each time.

This was loads of fun. And I’m totally using it for Popsugar’s female athlete prompt this year! The print edition was a Subterranean Press special edition, but you can still find the ebook available to buy if you want to read it.

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