I’ve got my ear to the ground. To the spooky ground. So, uh, I wanted to tell you about the five most promising horror books out this month. Or, you know, the five most promising supernatural thrillers, or dark fiction books, or whatever the hell(s) we’re calling them these days.
1. The Fireman, by Joe Hill (May 17)
Back in February at Boskone, I went to a reading (a pretty intimate reading, actually — got to love conventions) by Mr. Hill. He read a chapter from The Fireman, and it was pretty scary stuff. Basically there’s a disease spreading around the U.S. that causes its victims to spontaneously combust. So even if you haven’t caught it yet, you don’t want to be standing too near someone who has . . .
2. Burned: The Thrice Cursed Mage, Book 3, by J.A. Cipriano (out now)
Continuing with our toasty theme, looks like readers are responding well to the third book in Cipriano’s urban fantasy series about a guy who hunts down demons and whose right hand seems to be on fire. You’d probably want to start with Book 1, Cursed.
3. The City of Mirrors, by Justin Cronin (May 24)
The City of Mirrors is Book Three of the Passage Trilogy, which people keep telling me I need to check out. So I will. I’m not going to read the description too closely for this one because of “teh spoilerz,” but Stephen King says it’s a “thrilling finale to a trilogy that will stand as one of the great achievements in American fantasy fiction.” I’m sold.
4. Sweet Lamb of Heaven, by Lydia Millet (out now)
This one got a writeup in Slate, albeit under the label of “metaphysical thriller.” An Alaskan woman and her daughter are on the run from her aspiring politician husband. Holed up in a hotel in Maine (hello, nice to see you), the main character discovers the truth behind her daughter’s supernatural ability to make voices come out of the air, and then things really get weird. So yeah, Sweet Lamb of Heaven.
5. The Loney, by Andrew Michael Hurley (May 10)
Rated B+ by Entertainment Weekly, this debut novel by a British author is about a guy forced to reckon with terrible events from his past when a kid is found dead on the misty coast of Lancashire. Apparently Stephen King has already read this one and liked it too. Come to think of it, I’m sure he also read The Fireman, since his son wrote that one. You know what, maybe it wouldn’t be so hard to get Uncle Stevie to blurb my book too? (Ha.)
So, what did I miss?
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