Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Bloody Signorina

"Bloody Signorina" by Joseph D'Agnese appeared in the September 2013 issue of Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine.  It really confused me at first.  That's not a great quality in short fiction.

There are two character sets in this story.  One only appears in about two scenes, neither of which I cared much about.  I'm guessing D'Agnese included them (a pair of cops) because he felt there had to be cops in a story to be published by AHMM (eh...that might be true).  The other character set was okay.  The protagonist was an anti-hero, which I suppose is refreshing, but the whole anti-hero thing didn't make 100% sense.  She had a semi-interesting arc.  Her voice was supplemented with Italian words, a feature that was cool in some ways and annoying in others.  The characters weren't so bad that they ruined the story, even if they were sub-par.

I give the setting a good score because it wasn't overbearing and it was foreign without being too foreign.  This story is set in Italy.  Some of the confusion I had was whether America or Italy was the setting.  It took me two pages to figure it out.  That may have been my fault, however.

There was plot in this story, sure, but not much of one.  The most shocking aspect cut away at the end, leaving a more shrouded problem to get the more pronounced resolution.  I was somewhat disappointed.

Overall, I give this story an 80%.  It wasn't as bad as I may have made it sound.  The writing itself was actually very good.  My time wasn't wasted.


  1. The story does sound confusing. I have read Alfred Hitchcock short stories magazine for a while. I keep intending to read more short stories.

    1. I have subscriptions to Alfred Hitchcock's and The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, as well as Daily Science Fiction. Four out of five short stories I've read have been excellent.