Transmutation is an eerie darling of a collection. Alex DiFrancesco has written stories here that are so unearthly they feel as if they have gossamer wings, characters lifting off the page to hold court in startling three-dimensional life. Some playful, some terrifying, all crafted with care—Transmutation is the kind of story collection that will stick with you for days after reading. DiFrancesco is a radiant talent.”

—Kristen Arnett, New York Times bestselling author of the novel Mostly Dead Things

“Transmutation is haunting yet immediate, horrifying yet gorgeous, stylishly blasphemous yet earnestly spiritual. I expected clever ghost stories about gender, but what I got will stay with me for a very long time.”

—Meredith Russo

“In Transmutation, monsters come in many forms but so does grace. Here you will find a merciful vampire, a shrewd lobotomized woman, a repentant rock star, a trans girl finding kinship with a mythical green hag. Alex DiFrancesco’s characters are outsiders, often victims of a cruel world, but they are never just victims. These masterfully wrought stories transmute suffering into a kind of triumph, in which harsh realities are never softened but are somehow, sometimes, transcended.”

—Jennifer Wortman, author of This. This. This. Is. Love. Love. Love.

“Multilayered, poetic, insightful stories that won’t let you put them down. Transmutation is simultaneously an absolute pleasure and heartache of a read. I thought about the stories in this book for weeks after I finished them, reliving the small details, searching for new meaning, which I always found.”

—Chavisa Woods, author of Things To Do When You’re Goth in the Country and 100 Times (A Memoir of Sexism)

“DiFrancesco’s characters are not simply reflections of who we appear to be, they are our real selves, the ones we try so very hard to keep hidden. These stories lay them bare and demand that we acknowledge them in all of their wondrous imperfection. Grimy, raw, and glittering with truth, these are portraits of the human heart.”

—Michael Thomas Ford, author of Shirley Jackson Award finalist Lily

“DiFrancesco’s gothic tales, which are wonderfully creepy, are the real winners here.” 


“Whether striking chords that are playful, poignant, or both at once, this collection consistently charms.”

Publishers Weekly