Wednesday, June 7, 2023

What We've Been Reading | June 7, 2023

Below are a few horror and horrorish reads we've been reading lately. We hope you find something to add to your tbr pile!

We Don't Swim Here by Vincent Tirado

She is the reason no one goes in the water. And she will make them pay. A chilling new novel for fans of Tiffany D. Jackson, Lamar Giles, and Ryan Douglass

From the author of BURN DOWN, RISE UP comes a chilling novel told through alternating voices that follows two cousins as they unravel their town’s sinister past, their family’s complicated history, and the terrifying spirit that holds their future captive.

Bronwyn is only supposed to be in rural Hillwoods for a year. Her grandmother is in hospice, and her father needs to get her affairs in order. And they're all meant to make some final memories together.

Except Bronwyn is miserable. Her grandmother is dying, everyone is standoffish, and she can't even go swimming. All she hears are warnings about going in the water, despite a gorgeous lake. And a pool at the abandoned rec center. And another in the high school basement.

Anais tries her hardest to protect Bronwyn from the shadows of Hillwoods. She follows her own rituals to avoid any unnecessary attention—and if she can just get Bronwyn to stop asking questions, she can protect her too. The less Bronwyn pays attention to Hillwoods, the less Hillwoods will pay attention to Bronwyn. She doesn't get that the lore is, well, truth. History. Pain. The living aren't the only ones who seek retribution when they're wronged. But when Bronwyn does more exploring than she should, they are both in for danger they couldn't expect.

Heather's Teaser Review

"If you love a good mysterious town, ghost, murder, and secrets. Pick this up! Vincent is really out here knocking it out of the park with these books!"

Read Heather's entire review at Goodreads.

Moon Child by Gaby Triana

The Craft meets The Shining in slow-burn tropical horror.



“First-rate Southern Gothic horror.”

18-year-old Valentina Callejas was raised to do what her Cuban, Catholic grandparents say to do. But Valentina feels a different pull--an affinity with nature, tarot cards, and the occult. After ditching her church retreat, she knows it's time to go off on her own. 

Visiting Macy--a half-sister she's never met until now--in a little rotting town five hours from the big city where she was raised, Valentina discovers the abandoned, oppressive Sunlake Springs Resort. There she meets the "clairs," young psychics drawn to the hotel's haunted history who've been waiting for her to open a magical entryway to the spirit world. 

But Valentina's sensitive hands tell a different story--of anguished spirits, menacing cracks, and hooded ghosts of Florida's unsavory past. Even a local legend, the beautiful "Lady of the Lake," hints to the hotel's sinister history. To protect the clairs from the horrors awaiting them on the other side, Valentina must use her growing powers and decide, once and for all, if she's the witch she was meant to be.

Goodreads | Amazon

Teresa's Teaser Review

"Valentina and the other clairs are written so well that you feel like you are there with them, and once the atmosphere of the Resort starts to seep in to your bones, you are trapped there, just like the spirits seem to be. Moon Child is haunted in the very best way."

Read Teresa's entire review at Goodreads.

City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab

Cassidy Blake's parents are The Inspecters, a (somewhat inept) ghost-hunting team. But Cass herself can REALLY see ghosts. In fact, her best friend, Jacob, just happens to be one.

When The Inspecters head to ultra-haunted Edinburgh, Scotland, for their new TV show, Cass—and Jacob—come along. In Scotland, Cass is surrounded by ghosts, not all of them friendly. Then she meets Lara, a girl who can also see the dead. But Lara tells Cassidy that as an In-betweener, their job is to send ghosts permanently beyond the Veil. Cass isn't sure about her new mission, but she does know the sinister Red Raven haunting the city doesn't belong in her world. Cassidy's powers will draw her into an epic fight that stretches through the worlds of the living and the dead, in order to save herself.

Goodreads | Amazon

Jen's Teaser Review

"City of Ghosts is a middle grade horror novel, but it definitely has wide appeal. It has my favorite MG elements: ghosts and friendships."

Read Jen's entire review at her blog Book Den.

Thank you for joining us today! We hope you found something to add to your tbr list. Please share your recent reads with us in the comments below.

Our Reviewers

Heather is a contributing reviewer and helps out with the Horror Spotlight Instagram account. Find her online at Goodreads, Twitter as @HSquared_13, and on Instagram as @h.hellion.

Teresa creates the Shelf Edition posts, creates bookish lists and is a contributing reviewer at Horror Spotlight. You can find Teresa on Goodreads, and on Twitter.

Jen is one of our Horror Spotlight admins. Jen manages the technical side of the Horror Spotlight website and keeps a spotlight on new horror releases each month.

You can also find Jen on her blog Book Den, Twitter as @bookden, Instagram as @bookdenjen, on Goodreads, and Letterboxd.

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