Most Anticipated Horror Books
Created by Bob Helmbrecht, collection development librarian
There are a lot of great horror titles coming out in the first half of 2022, including novels, short story collections, and poetry collections. Check out some of the ones I’m most looking forward to, and place your holds now!
- “A Black and Endless Sky” by Matthew Lyons
“Two siblings encounter an otherworldly force that possesses one of them on a cross-country road trip. They are forced to fight for their lives as they’re pursued across the American Southwest by malevolent forces both supernatural and terribly human.” I haven’t read Lyons’ previous work yet, but I’ve seen some excellent pre-publication reviews for this one.
- “The Doloriad” by Missouri Williams
“In the wake of a mysterious environmental cataclysm that has wiped out the rest of humankind, the Matriarch, her brother, and the family descended from their incest cling to existence on the edges of a deserted city. The Matriarch, ruling with fear and force, dreams of starting humanity over again, though her children are not so certain.” I’m a big fan of post-apocalyptic stories, and this debut novel looks really promising.
- “The Hacienda” by Isabel Cañas
“‘Mexican Gothic‘ meets ‘Rebecca‘ in this debut supernatural suspense novel, set in the aftermath of the Mexican War of Independence, about a remote house, a sinister haunting, and the woman pulled into their clutches.” Another debut novel, with a number of reviews saying it’s a great addition to the postcolonial gothic novels that have been coming out recently.
- “Mestiza Blood” by V. Castro
“A short story collection of nightmares, dreams, desires and visions centered around the Chicana experience. The stunning, star-reviewed V. Castro weaves urban legend, folklore, life experience and heartache in this intimate anthology of modern horrors.” I was first introduced to Castro with 2021’s “Queen of the Cicadas,” and she’s gone quickly onto my must-read list.
- “The Ravenous Dead” by Darcy Coates
“Keira, hired as Blighty Graveyard’s new groundskeeper, lives surrounded by the dead. They watch her through the fog. They wordlessly cry out. They’ve been desperately waiting for help moving on — and only Keira can hear them. But not every restless spirit wants to be saved.” Coates has been consistently putting out excellent horror titles the past several years, and this looks like another good one.
- “Spontaneous Human Combustion” by Richard Thomas
“The fourth collection by Richard Thomas is a curated list of his best work from the last five years. It is a mix of immersive speculative fiction-fantasy, science fiction, and horror-that addresses transgressive themes while still leaving room for hope.” I always enjoy Thomas’s writing, especially his short fiction. This one looks like it will be another great collection of stories.
- “Such a Pretty Smile” by Kristi DeMeester
“There’s something out there that’s killing. Known only as The Cur, he leaves no traces, save for the torn bodies of girls, on the verge of becoming women, who are known as trouble-makers; those who refuse to conform, to know their place. Girls who don’t know when to shut up.” I somehow hadn’t read any of DeMeester’s work until recently coming across her excellent 2017 short-story collection “Everything That’s Underneath,” and now I’m really looking forward to this one.
- “Sundial” by Catriona Ward
“All Rob wanted was a normal life. She almost got it, too: a husband, two kids, a nice house in the suburbs. But Rob fears for her oldest daughter, Callie, who collects tiny bones and whispers to imaginary friends. Rob sees a darkness in Callie, one that reminds her too much of the family she left behind. The mother and daughter embark on a dark, desert journey to the past in the hopes of redeeming their future.” Ward’s previous novel “The Last House on Needless Street” was on a lot of 2021 favorites and best books lists (including mine!).
- “Under Her Skin” edited by Lindy Ryan and Toni Miller
“Black Spot Books presents its inaugural Poetry Showcase, featuring the best in never-before-published dark verse and lyrical prose from the voices of Women in Horror.” Just going from the authors in the table of contents, I’m expecting this to be an outstanding collection.