The Refrigerator Monologues (Paperback)
I know people often refer to it as the “cold, hard truth,” and while the truth Cat shares in THE REFRIGERATOR MONOLOGUES is often hard, it is warm with a steady pulse, even when her narrators may not be. These are not the meek women who wait for their heroes to save the day, they fight to take what they want and champion their own truths--although at the end of the day they have all become residents of Deadtown, the grey afterlife where spirits crave entertainment and stories the way the living desire food. In a superhero universe of her own creation, Cat deconstructs the archetype we’re so familiar with, the dashing hero always triumphs in the end and so all is well, regardless of what sacrifices had to be made for the greater good. Cat gives voices to some of these sacrifices, offering them an opportunity to find if not closure, then community, which may be the most important part after all.— Steph
The Refrigerator Monologues is a collection of linked stories from the points of view of the wives and girlfriends of superheroes, female heroes, and anyone who’s ever been “refrigerated”: comic book women who are killed, raped, brainwashed, driven mad, disabled, or had their powers taken so that a male superhero’s storyline will progress.
In an entirely new and original superhero universe, Valente subversively explores these ideas and themes in the superhero genre, treating them with the same love, gravity, and humor as her fairy tales. After all, superheroes are our new fairy tales and these six women have their own stories to share.
— : Vox.com
"This is Valente at her sharpest and most pointed, ably assisted by illustrations from comics artist Annie Wu (Black Canary)."
— -- Publishers Weekly (STARRED REVIEW)
"Valente proves her adroitness with imagery and emotion in this extraordinary book of linked stories."
— -- Library Journal (STARRED REVIEW)
“In this novella, the superhero girlfriend gets to tell her own version of events in the afterlife. The women’s voices are strong: bitter and full of pain, yet steel-tipped in sarcasm and humor.”
— -- The Washington Post
""The real fun of The Refrigerator Monologues comes from Valente’s hyper-stylized voice, inflected by turns with pop, jazz, and opera as she moves from heroine to heroine, genre to genre. It’s by turns bitingly sarcastic and wistfully regretful, and always ferociously angry at the narrative in which this collection of women has been trapped.”
— -- Vox
"The illustrations by longtime comic artist Annie Wu are an extra gift to this heartbreaking series of stories. Don’t turn from their stories, no matter how hard they can be to hear. Verdict: Buy it, damn you, and listen to their stories.”
— - BookRiot
"It’s hard to single out one tale. They are all of a piece- and they expertly dissect a common type of lazy storytelling that still crops up far too frequently. It’s not about angry polemics; instead, these monologues have their own energy and life that is both painful and captivating”
— -- Locus Magazine
“Readers adventurous enough to parachute into unfamiliar literary territory will be rewarded by Valente’s biting wit, outlandish world-building and well-focused sense of outrage."
— -- Portland Press Herald