©2024 Fable Group Inc.

Little Deaths

By Ellen Datlow and J. Calvin Pierce and Kathe Koja and Barry N. Malzberg and Joel Lane and Joyce Carol Oates and Melanie Tem and Kelley Eskridge and Sarah Clemens and Nicola Griffith and M. John Harrison and Jack Womack and Douglas Clegg and K. W. Jeter and Richard Christian Matheson and Lucius Shepard and Stephen Dedman and Lucy Taylor and Harry Crews and Wayne Allen Sallee and Nicholas Royle and Pat Cadigan
Little Deaths by Ellen Datlow and J. Calvin Pierce and Kathe Koja and Barry N. Malzberg and Joel Lane and Joyce Carol Oates and Melanie Tem and Kelley Eskridge and Sarah Clemens and Nicola Griffith and M. John Harrison and Jack Womack and Douglas Clegg and K. W. Jeter and Richard Christian Matheson and Lucius Shepard and Stephen Dedman and Lucy Taylor and Harry Crews and Wayne Allen Sallee and Nicholas Royle and Pat Cadigan digital book - Fable

Why read on Fable?

Discover social reading

Chat inside the ebook with emojis, comments and more

Annotate with notes, tabs, and highlights

Share or keep your notes private with our annotation features

Support the World Literacy Foundation

We donate 20% of every book sale to help children learn to read

Publisher Description

A World Fantasy Award–winning anthology of erotic horror stories, including dark tales of desire by Joyce Carol Oates, Stephen Dedman, Harry Crews, and others.

The title of this acclaimed anthology comes from the French term “la petite mort,” a seventeenth-century euphemism for orgasm. It was thought that part of a man’s life-force was drained from him each time he climaxed. In Little Deaths, renowned horror editor Ellen Datlow collects twenty-two stories that explore the connection between sex and death.

These stories range from the erotic to the psychological, all against a backdrop of horror. Authors include Lucy Taylor, Nicola Griffith, Kathe Koja, Richard Christian Matheson, Lucius Shepard, and many more.

2 Reviews

Anxious Face with sweat“Ellen Datlow's anthologies are typically good. This one was not. It should've been called "Ruminating about Relationships." The opening story set high expectations then none of the stories grabbed me, no matter how famous the author--and, as usual, Ellen has a couple well-known writers in the mix. Missable. Side note: The edition I read had punctuation and spelling errors.”
MisogynySelf-harmSexual assaultTransphobiaViolenceBad writingUnengaging charactersUnsatisfying endingUnsatisfying plot
“top stories are Barker, Matheson, & Eskridge; however even then below the typical Datlow quality mix (IMHO)”

About Ellen Datlow

Ellen Datlow, an acclaimed science fiction and fantasy editor, was born and raised in New York City. She has been a short story and book editor for more than thirty years and has edited or coedited several critically acclaimed anthologies of speculative fiction, including the Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror series and Black Thorn, White Rose (1994) with Terri Windling. Datlow has received numerous honors, including multiple Shirley Jackson, Bram Stoker, Hugo, Locus, and World Fantasy Awards, and Life Achievement Awards from the Horror Writers Association and the World Fantasy Association, to name just a few. She resides in New York.  

Other books by Ellen Datlow

J. Calvin Pierce

J. Calvin Pierce was the author of the Ambermere fantasy series. “Sahib” was one of two short stories he wrote. He died in 2021.

Kathe Koja

Kathe Koja is a writer and producer based in Detroit. Her work includes The Cipher, Skin, Under the Poppy, and Dark Factory.

Other books by Kathe Koja

Barry N. Malzberg

Barry N. Malzberg is the author of more than thirty science fiction novels and hundreds of short stories, as well as several thrillers and erotic novels under his own name and various pseudonyms. He won the John W. Campbell Memorial Award for his 1972 novel, Beyond Apollo. His 1982 collection of critical essays, The Engines of the Night, was a major contribution to the field of science fiction.

Other books by Barry N. Malzberg

Joel Lane

Joel Lane was a British novelist, short story writer, poet, critic, and anthology editor. In addition to his dark fantasy and horror short fiction, Lane published two novels, From Blue to Black and The Blue Mask.

He received the World Fantasy Award in 2013 for his collection, Where Furnaces Burn, and won the British Fantasy Award twice. His short stories have been collected in seven volumes. He died in 2013.

Joyce Carol Oates

Joyce Carol Oates is the author of over seventy books encompassing novels, poetry, criticism, story collections, plays, and essays. Her novel Them won the National Book Award in Fiction in 1970. Oates has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters for more than three decades and currently holds the Roger S. Berlind Distinguished Professorship at Princeton University. 

Other books by Joyce Carol Oates

Melanie Tem

Melanie Tem, British Fantasy and World Fantasy Award–winning author, passed away in 2015. The most important of her short stories are collected in Singularity and Other Stories. Tem’s other works include her last novel, The Yellow Wood, and a recent collection of her plays and poetry, Fry Day Plays & Poems.

Other books by Melanie Tem

Kelley Eskridge

Kelley Eskridge is an author and screenwriter. Her novel Solitaire is a New York Times Notable Book, and her short fiction has been nominated for the Nebula, Tiptree (now Otherwise), Gaylactic Spectrum, and Endeavour Awards. Her film OtherLife was a selection at multiple film festivals. She lives in Seattle with her wife, Nicola Griffith. She loves food, wine, and good conversations.

Sarah Clemens

Sarah Clemens is an artist who also writes. She has authored short stories for Ellen Datlow’s anthologies, as well as Asimov’s Science Fiction. Much of her art is also related to the fantastic. She and her husband live in Arizona with their cats, carnivorous plants, and terrariums.

Nicola Griffith

Nicola Griffith is a dual UK-US citizen living in Seattle. She is the author of nine novels including Hild, Spear, and the forthcoming Menewood. She has written for the New York Times, The Guardian, Nature, and New Scientist, and her awards include four Lambda Literary Awards, the Ray Bradbury Prize, and the Italia, and Nebula, World Fantasy, and Otherwise/Tiptree Awards. She holds a PhD from Anglia Ruskin University and is married to novelist and screenwriter Kelley Eskridge.

M. John Harrison

M. John Harrison, is a multi-award winning English author and literary critic. His work includes the Viriconium novels and short stories, Climbers, and the Kefahuchi Tract trilogy, which consists of Light, Nova Swing, and Empty Space. His most recent book, Wish I Was Here, has been referred to as an anti-memoir.

Douglas Clegg

Douglas Clegg is a screenwriter, poet, and the author of dozens of novels, novellas, and short story collections. His fiction has won the Bram Stoker Award and the International Horror Guild Award. He is married to Raul Silva and lives near the New England coast, where he is currently writing his next work of fiction.

K. W. Jeter

K. W. Jeter was born in Los Angeles in 1950. His novels include Dr. Adder, The Glass Hammer, and Infernal Devices. His most recent publication is Real Dangerous Place, the latest in his Kim Oh thriller series.

Other books by K. W. Jeter

Richard Christian Matheson

Richard C. Matheson is a #1 bestselling author and screenwriter/producer. He has created, written, and produced acclaimed TV series, mini-series, and films, including cult favorite Three O’Clock High and Stephen King’s Battleground, which won two Emmys. Matheson’s short stories appear in his collections, Scars and Other Distinguishing Marks, Zoopraxis, Dystopia, and over one hundred anthologies, including Best of the Year volumes. His novels include Created By and The Ritual of Illusion.

Other books by Richard Christian Matheson

Lucius Shepard

Lucius Shepard was born in Lynchburg, Virginia, grew up in Daytona, Florida, and lived the last years of his life in Portland, Oregon. His short fiction won the Nebula Award, the Hugo Award, the International Horror Guild Award, the National Magazine Award, the Locus Award, the Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award, and the World Fantasy Award. He died in 2014.

Other books by Lucius Shepard

Stephen Dedman

Stephen Dedman grew up (though many would dispute this) on the outer limits of Perth’s metropolitan area, far enough from a good library that he had to make up his own science fiction and horror stories. He continued to do this when he should have been studying, and after false starts at two other universities, received a bachelor’s in creative writing and film in 1984. Since then, he’s held too many boring jobs and a few interesting ones, including actor, tutor, experimental subject, editorial assistant for Australian Physicist magazine, education officer and used dinosaur salesman for the WA Museum, and the manager of a science fiction bookshop. He has been writing for fun for more than thirty years, and for money for twenty; he sold his first short story in 1977, and his first novel in 1995. He quit yet another boring job in 1996 to write full time, and is currently working on two novels and writing one new story a month. Dedman is the author of the novels The Art of Arrow Cutting (Tor, 1997) and Foreign Bodies (Tor, 1999), and the nonfiction book Bone Hunters: On the Trail of the Dinosaurs (Omnibus, 1998). His short stories have appeared in an eclectic range of magazines and anthologies, including The Year’s Best Fantasy & HorrorLittle DeathsAsimov’s Science FictionFantasy & Science FictionScience Fiction AgeInterzoneWeird Tales, and Realms of Fantasy. His work has won the Aurealis Award and Australian Science Fiction Achievement Award, and been shortlisted for the Bram Stoker Award, the British Science Fiction Association Award, and the Sidewise Award for Alternate History.

Dedman lives in western Australia, and enjoys reading, travel, movies, complicated relationships, talking to cats, and startling people.

Lucy Taylor

Lucy Taylor is an award-winning author who has published seven novels and over a hundred short stories in anthologies and magazines. Her most recent work can be found in the anthologies The Big Book of Blasphemy, Cutting Edge, A Fistful of Dinosaurs, and Vagabond 001, 002, and 003. Her Bram Stoker Award–winning novel, The Safety of Unknown Cities, was recently reprinted in German by Festa Verlag Publications and is currently being translated into Russian by Poltergeist Press. Taylor lives in the high desert outside Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Harry Crews

Harry Crews wrote novels, nonfiction books, and a memoir. His best known works are The Gospel Singer, The Gypsy’s Curse, A Feast of Snakes, The Knockout Artist, and Scar Lover. His work was gritty, and he often wrote about outsiders and grotesques living in the Deep South. Crews lived in Florida and died in 2012.

Wayne Allen Sallee

Wayne Allen Sallee primarily writes short fiction, and several of his stories were reprinted in Karl Edward Wagner’s The Year’s Best Horror Stories anthologies. All of his short fiction is being reprinted by Crossroad Press in Rapid Transit: Volumes 1–3. Sallee’s novel, The Holy Terror, has been published in five languages. He wrote Proactive Contrition, a memoir, and is currently updating Pain Grin, a chapbook that will include ruminations about the COVID pandemic and how it affected Chicago.

Nicholas Royle

Nicholas Royle is the author of several short story collections, including, most recently, London Gothic and Manchester Uncanny, and seven novels. He has edited over twenty-five anthologies and is series editor of Best British Short Stories. He runs Nightjar Press, which publishes original short stories as signed, numbered chapbooks. His English translation of Vincent de Swarte’s 1998 novel Pharricide was published by Confingo Publishing in 2019. In 2021, his memoir, White Spines: Confessions of a Book Collector, was published by Salt.

Pat Cadigan

Pat Cadigan is the author of more than a dozen books, including two nonfiction titles, a young adult novel, and two Arthur C. Clarke Award–winning novels, Synners and Fools. She has won two Scribe Awards for a novelization of Alita: Battle Angel and an adaptation of William Gibson’s unproduced screenplay for Alien 3, along with three Locus Awards and a Hugo Award for her novelette “The Girl-Thing Who Went Out for Sushi.” Pat lives in North London with her husband, Chris Fowler.

Other books by Pat Cadigan

Start a Book Club

Start a public or private book club with this book on the Fable app today!


Do I have to buy the ebook to participate in a book club?

Why can’t I buy the ebook on the app?

How is Fable’s reader different from Kindle?

Do you sell physical books too?

Are book clubs free to join on Fable?

How do I start a book club with this book on Fable?

Error Icon
Save to a list
Private List
Private lists are not visible to other Fable users on your public profile.
Notification Icon