This collection of short storis examines the capacity of women to do evil. Bringing us into the depths of horror, Oates's protagonists range in age, interest, and situation. We meet a six-year-old girl, a young nurse, a middle-aged fashionista, and an elderly woman dying in a nursing home, among others. What unites all of these women across their stories are the desperate personal circumstances in which they find themselves, and the realization that the only path out is a dark and disturbing one. As with much of Oates's work, this collection addresses the exploitation and marginalization of women in American society, yet it does so through horror and suspense. This is a deliciously suspenseful collection, excellent reading for a spooky October night.