After a brief sabbatical, Monster Books host Jessica Scott is back to talk all about YA slashers! For this episode she’s diving deep into a single book: Clown in a Cornfield by Adam Cesare.

She discusses the novel’s political implications and asks readers to let her know if she’s secretly an old woman yelling at kids to get off her lawn.

Topics include: the politics of the slasher rules, the joys and sorrows of social media, authentic teen voices, and how Final Girls give strength to horror fans.


  • 00:19 Introduction and discussion of the perceived conservatism of slasher stories
  • 04:35 Clown in a Cornfield introduction
  • 06:31 Clown in a Cornfield synopsis and discussion of politics and social media
  • 13:00 Escapism in horror, gore in Clown in a Cornfield, and Gen Z’s political involvement
  • 16:27 Identifying authentic kids’ voices and subverting genre tropes in Clown in a Cornfield
  • 25:31 Violence in Clown in a Cornfield and the catharsis of seeing Final Girls survive
  • 28:35 Shout-out to listeners and wrap-up

Follow Monster Books Podcast and your host Jessica Scott on Twitter @MonsterBooksPod, @WeWhoWalkHere, and @SpookyKidLit. If you like the podcast, please rate, review, and subscribe!

Thanks to Drew Pidgeon for the amazing music and Lily Todorov for the incredible cover art!