2018 was a brilliant year for horror and it looks like 2019 is going to be just as exciting with plenty of big scary reads coming our way in the upcoming months. So, here are a few of this year’s horror releases that I am excited for:
The Familiars by Stacey Halls
Release Date: February 7th 2019
“Fleetwood Shuttleworth is 17 years old, married, and pregnant for the fourth time. But as the mistress at Gawthorpe Hall, she still has no living child, and her husband Richard is anxious for an heir. When Fleetwood finds a letter she isn’t supposed to read from the doctor who delivered her third stillbirth, she is dealt the crushing blow that she will not survive another pregnancy.
When she crosses paths by chance with Alice Gray, a young midwife, Alice promises to help her give birth to a healthy baby, and to prove the physician wrong.
When Alice is drawn into the witchcraft accusations that are sweeping the North-West, Fleetwood risks everything by trying to help her. But is there more to Alice than meets the eye?
As the two women’s lives become inextricably bound together, the legendary trial at Lancaster approaches, and Fleetwood¹s stomach continues to grow. Time is running out, and both their lives are at stake.”
People cant seem to get enough of witches in fiction lately, and I will admit to being one of those people. I love a good witchcraft trial story. I am a big fan of historical fiction and the witch trials (American and European) is one of my favourite topics. Even if this book leans more on the historical fiction side rather than its horror one I know I will probably end up enjoying it.
Will Haunt You by Brian Kirk
Release Date: March 14th 2019
“You don’t read the book. It reads you.
Rumors of a deadly book have been floating around the dark corners of the deep web. A disturbing tale about a mysterious figure who preys on those who read the book and subjects them to a world of personalized terror. Jesse Wheeler–former guitarist of the heavy metal group The Rising Dead–was quick to discount the ominous folklore associated with the book. It takes more than some urban legend to frighten him. Hell, reality is scary enough. Seven years ago his greatest responsibility was the nightly guitar solo. Then one night when Jesse was blackout drunk, he accidentally injured his son, leaving him permanently disabled. Dreams of being a rock star died when he destroyed his son’s future. Now he cuts radio jingles and fights to stay clean. But Jesse is wrong.
The legend is real–and tonight he will become the protagonist in an elaborate scheme specifically tailored to prey on his fears and resurrect the ghosts from his past. Jesse is not the only one in danger, however.
By reading the book, you have volunteered to participate in the author’s deadly game, with every page drawing you closer to your own personalized nightmare.
The real horror doesn’t begin until you reach the end. That’s when the evil comes for you.”
This book sounds like an odd mixture of Heart Shaped Box and Inkheart, both books and ideas I loved so this book sounds amazing to me. All of the reviews I have read for this book have been brilliant so far. I might need to get my hands on an arc copy asap!
Inspection by Josh Malerman
Release Date: April 23rd 2019
“Boys are being trained at one school for geniuses, girls at another. Neither knows the other exists—until now. The innovative author of Bird Box invites you into a world of secrets and horror in this tantalizing thriller.
J is a student at a school deep in a forest far away from the rest of the world.
J is one of only twenty-six students, all of whom think of the school’s enigmatic founder as their father. J’s peers are the only family he has ever had. The students are being trained to be prodigies of art, science, and athletics, and their life at the school is all they know—and all they are allowed to know.
But J suspects that there is something out there, beyond the pines, that the founder does not want him to see, and he’s beginning to ask questions. What is the real purpose of this place? Why can the students never leave? And what secrets is their father hiding from them?
Meanwhile, on the other side of the forest, in a school very much like J’s, a girl named K is asking the same questions. J has never seen a girl, and K has never seen a boy. As K and J work to investigate the secrets of their two strange schools, they come to discover something even more mysterious: each other.”
I am going to share an unpopular opinion here: I thought Bird Box was just ok. I thought it was a brilliant idea and very unique but something about it just didnt grab my attention while I read it. Even with that though, I am still excited for Josh Malerman’s newest book. His horror ideas are creative and twisted. He plays with the topic of isolation very well in his work, and the summary of this book makes it sound like he is doing just that.
Growing Things and Other Stories by Paul Tremblay
Release Date: July 2nd 2019
“A chilling collection of psychological suspense and literary horror from the multiple award-winning author of the national bestseller The Cabin at the End of the World and A Head Full of Ghosts.
A masterful anthology featuring nineteen pieces of short fiction, Growing Things is an exciting glimpse into Paul Tremblay’s fantastically fertile imagination.”
Paul Tremblay is a writer who I NEED to read. I have had Head Full of Ghosts on my TBR list for quite some time and recently I added The Cabin at the End of the World to it. He is one of the writers I plan on getting to this year and hopefully he lives up to my expectations as I have heard only good things so far. A new book to binge read by an author new to me is always something to look forward. You just cant beat a good short story collection sometimes.
Petra’s Ghost by C.S. O’Cinneide
Release Date: August 13th 2019
“A man’s pilgrimage becomes something from his darkest nightmares when secrets arise and ghosts haunt his path.
A woman has vanished on the Camino de Santiago, the ancient five-hundred-mile pilgrimage that crosses northern Spain. Daniel, an Irish expat, walks the lonely trail carrying his wife Petra’s ashes, along with the damning secret of how she really died.
When he teams up to walk with sporty California girl Ginny, she seems like the perfect antidote for his grieving heart. But a nightmare figure begins to stalk them, and his mind starts to unravel from the horror of things he cannot explain.
Twists and turns echo along the ancient path they walk upon, and the lines start to blur between reality and madness; the lines that separate the truth from the lies we tell ourselves.”
Petra’s Ghost has all the makings of a good mystery and a great psychological horror. The premise reminds me a lot of the Japanese gothic stories I enjoy. A man with a wife who died mysteriously is haunted by a mysterious figure. I am not 100% sure what is going on in this book but I cant wait to read it anyway.