It’s time to drop some COVERS!
We’ve been celebrating our favorite scary reads this month, but the horror doesn’t end there. Today, we’re revealing not one, not two, but FOUR brand new 2022 books to add to your thriller TBR! And we may have even snatched some excerpts of these new reads for you to get a sneak peek.
First up, prepare your eyes for the chilling cover of These Fleeting Shadows by Kate Alice Marshall, and read an excerpt below! The Haunting of Hill House meets Knives Out in a bid for an inheritance that will leave Helen Vaughan either rich…or dead.
These Fleeting Shadows by Kate Alice Marshall – Coming August 9, 2022!
Cover/jacket designer: Kristie Radwilowicz
The girl was about seven or eight years old, blonde, wearing a simple white dress and no shoes. She crouched down just off the road, her back to me. She seemed to be looking at something on the ground.
“Hey,” I called, frozen at the edge of the road. She didn’t look up. Her shoulders moved, and I realized she wasn’t just looking at something—she was digging at the ground in front of her. “Hey, are you okay?” I called again, and drew closer, uneasiness prickling at my skin.
She didn’t answer. She scraped up handfuls of dirt from the ground and shoved them aside, moving with frantic efficiency. I approached cautiously, a knot in my throat. The ground was stiff with frost, and yet she kept digging, her hands red and chapped, one nail torn and bleeding.
“Your hands!” I said, reaching for her. She turned, and I balked.
She had no face—none that I could see. There was only the crazed distortion of an ocular migraine, like a jagged crack in glass shot through with strobing light.
“We’re not safe here,” she said, and her voice was distorted, too, like I was hearing it underwater. “Please. You have to find me.”
She sprang to her feet and dashed away, off along a deer track that shot through the trees.
“Wait!” I called, and without thinking or hesitating I plunged after her. The path snaked ahead of me. A flicker of white flashed around a bend in the narrow trail, out of sight. “Stop!”
“Find me,” the girl said—and her voice was a whisper, but it echoed through the trees. I ran after her. “Hurry,” the voice whispered. I spilled out onto a wider path, this one lined with gravel that crunched under my heels. White, bell-shaped flowers were scattered here and there. I caught glimpses of her flickering away at each bend in the path, but no matter how much speed I put on, she kept darting out of sight.
I came around a bend and fetched up short. I was standing at the edge of the graveyard. My grandfather’s grave was a rectangle of brown earth among the green.
A young woman stood with her back to me beside a headstone covered with clumps of moss and so worn that it was little more than a featureless lump. She wore a long gray dress and a leather satchel at her hip. Her hair fell in waves around her shoulders, dark as the shadows among the trees. With a small, hooked knife, she scraped some of the moss into a little glass jar before tucking it into her bag.
The young woman twisted, looking over her shoulder, and spotted me. She scowled. Her face was sharp, almost foxlike; not a comfortable face to look at for long, even from this distance. My heart beat fast in my chest, but I couldn’t tell if it was fear or something altogether different.
I drew forward, step by faltering step, and stopped a few feet from the gate. “Hi,” I said weakly.
She arched an eyebrow. “What do you want?” she asked.
“Sorry. I didn’t mean to—there was this girl,” I said. “Blonde, maybe seven or eight? I think she might be lost, so I was following her, but…” Except I hadn’t really thought she’d been lost, had I? Why had I run after her? I couldn’t remember now, and that sent a cold shiver of dread down my spine.
“It’s not a good idea to follow strange things into the woods,” she replied.
“She’s a girl, not a thing,” I snapped.
She gave me an appraising look. “She’s not lost. She’s not dangerous, but it’s still not a good idea to let her lead you around,” she said, as if this clarified things.
“She’s…” I took a deep breath, dropped my voice to a whisper. “Is she a ghost?”
She gave a sharp, startling laugh, like a bark. “No. There are no ghosts at Harrow.”
I flushed. “Right. Ghosts aren’t real. Obviously.”
“That’s not what I said.”
Next up is…Who We Were in the Dark by Jessica Taylor! For fans of Suicide Notes from Beautiful Girls and Genuine Fraud, this coming-of-age story with a dash of mystery/thriller asks, How do you find someone you never really knew?
Who We Were in the Dark by Jessica Taylor – Coming July 5, 2022!
Cover/jacket design: Kelley Brady
There are places you know, and then there are places that know you. Donner Pass, the high point over Truckee, where the elevation made Donner Lake spread like deep blue ink throughout the dip in the valley—that was somewhere that knew the sound of my footsteps, the smell of my frozen hair, the rhythm of my heart.
Inside the cabin, the plink plink plink of the kitchen faucet needled my ears. I tossed my keys onto the cracked tile counter and flipped off the water. It had been left on by someone to keep the relentless cold from freezing the pipes solid. Our cabin wore the signs of a year without me. Cobwebs trailed down the staircase spindles, a layer of grease caked the stove from the year before, and the once-white sink was stained with rust spots and lime scale.
I used to miss these walls and woods when I was suffocating between locker-lined hallways. I’d wait for summer and winter and spring—three times a year when Kevin’s Jeep would climb up, up, up through the twisted hills. As the oxygen thinned, I could finally breathe.
Here in Truckee, high above Donner Lake, the air tasted like pine, like lake water, like fresh snow. Here, I’d hear my brother’s whoops as we tore through the forest at night, feel Rand’s kisses vibrating against my throat on the hotel rooftop, relish the hollow clink of Grace’s glass against mine, her eyes going bright as she raised her drink to the night and the summer and us.
Back then I didn’t know that I’d have to hold Grace’s silence too. How that absence of sound would be the loudest of all.
Donner Pass didn’t just know me. It knew them too. Now, after a year away, without me and without us—our wonderful and wretched foursome—I wished this place could forget.
Next up, Go Hunt Me by Kelly deVos! For Dracula lovers and fans of Diana Urban’s All Your Twisted Secrets, this spine-tingling thriller follows seven horror buffs as their dream trip to a remote Romanian castle turns into a nightmare when they begin to be killed one by one.
Go Hunt Me by Kelly deVos – Coming June 14, 2022!
Cover/jacket design: Kristie Radwilowicz and Theresa Evangelista
You’re safe here.
That’s what the nurse told me when I arrived at St. Constantin’s.
Every time the wheels of the hospital cart squeak on the freshly mopped tile floor. Each time the orderlies whisper to each other in the hallways. When someone drops a lunch tray or coughs or clears their throat. I flinch and the heart monitor beside my bed beeps frantically.
I can’t sleep.
Can’t close my eyes for a second.
Every time I do, I see Jax’s face.
It’s the details that give me nightmares.
The castle turrets that were the same scarlet color as the dried specks of blood I can’t pry out from underneath my fingernails. The memories of the thin branches of the grey alder trees that twisted around my limbs like endless tentacles. The rustling leaves that concealed a conspiracy of whispers.
I can’t stand to be in the dark. For the dead travel fast.
When they found out where I’d been picked up, a look of understanding crossed their faces. They’d heard stories about Prahova Castle. The doctor who spent all morning digging shards of glass out of my scalp told me the private estate about fifty kilometers north of Brașov was a place that inspired legends. It had been the home of medieval warmonger, Vlad Dracul, the real-life inspiration of the fictional character, Dracula. The locals believed that the monsters of Prahova were more terrifying than what made it onto the pages of Bram Stoker’s novels.
Of course, I already knew that.
It was Dracula and his legends that drew us to Romania in the first place.
But we didn’t know that the castle had a more recent history of unsolved crimes and unexplained accidents. People went missing. Bodies washed up on the bank of the river that cut across the countryside and ran along the base of the sharp cliffs that bracketed the castle. For years, the place was owned by a drug dealer who used it for storage and operations. The Romanian police spent the better part of two decades relentlessly chasing a cartel across the always foggy, dense forest.
But even the farmers who knew the castle by reputation were shocked when our flaming utility cart crashed into the wooden fence outside of Rupea and I dragged Reagan’s bloody body out into the wet, muddy road. Six dead American tourists. The Poliția Română sent a team to recover the remains. I don’t know what there will be left to find.
Anything left of my friends.
My hand always feels empty. As if it will always be trying to reach out and pull Hazel from a pool of dark black water. I force my eyes open and stare at the greenish hospital lights.
You’re safe here.
Dr. Fieraru says that my mother caught the red eye from Phoenix. The police would send a car to the airport and she’d come to take me home. When I’m able to check my phone, I see all the alerts about Justin Bloom. In L.A., the police are hunting for the famous film director.
Wanted for questioning.
A while later, as I am reading the same page of the hospital magazine for the hundredth time, a short woman wearing a floral print dress and with her long, dark hair in a neat braid knocks lightly on the open door of my room.
“Alexandra Rush?” she says in a calm, pleasant voice.
Last cover reveal of the day, Youngblood by Sasha Laurens! For fans of Vampire Diaries and dark academia, two queer teen bloodsuckers at an elite vampire-only boarding school must go up against all of Vampirdom when they uncover a frightening conspiracy on campus.
Youngblood by Sasha Laurens – Coming July 19, 2022!
Cover/jacket design: Maria Fazio
Illustrator: Kevin Wada
About the book:
Kat Finn and her mother can barely make ends meet living among humans. Like all vampires, they must drink Hema, an expensive synthetic blood substitute, to survive, as nearly all of humanity has been infected by a virus that’s fatal to vampires. Kat isn’t looking forward to an immortal life of barely scraping by, but when she learns she’s been accepted to the Harcote School, a prestigious prep school that’s secretly vampires-only, she knows her fortune is about to change.
Taylor Sanger has grown up in the wealthy vampire world, but she’s tired of its backward, conservative values—especially when it comes to sexuality, since she’s an out-and-proud lesbian. She only has to suffer through a two more years of Harcote before she’s free. But when she discovers her new roommate is Kat Finn, she’s horrified. Because she and Kat used to be best friends, a long time ago, and it didn’t end well.
When Taylor stumbles upon the dead body of a vampire, and Kat makes a shocking discovery in the school’s archives, the two realize that there are deep secrets at Harcote—secrets that link them to the most powerful figures in Vampirdom and to the synthetic blood they all rely on.