Cover reveal time! And by that, we don’t mean just one…but TWO glorious new covers. Danielle Vega scared us silly last summer with The Haunted. Now, she’s back to scare us some more with The Unleashed! In the terrifying sequel to The Haunted, Hendricks discovers that even though Steele House is gone, the hauntings in Drearfield are far from over — and it’s up to her to stop them. And yes, we know waiting until July is tough…so we’re sharing an excerpt down below!
But let’s get to the covers. First up, The Unleashed!
And now for The Haunted‘s glow-up!
Want a sneak peek of what’s to come? Read an excerpt of The Unleashed below!
THE CLOCK BESIDE SAMANTHA DAVIDSON’S BED READ 3:17 A.M.
Then 3:18 a.m.
3:19 a.m. 3:20.
Samantha blinked. The clock didn’t read 9:22, of course. It read 3:21. She groaned. Her eyelids felt gluey. Heavy. Forty-nine was too old for insomnia, she thought. Her body wouldn’t be able to take much more of this. But whenever she closed her eyes and tried to tell her spinning brain to just shut up and go to sleep, the still, dark world around her seemed to . . .
It was only small things. The little dorm room where she slept was already small and stuffy, but when her eyes were closed, she could swear that the walls inched a little closer, that the ceiling sunk lower, that the floor beneath her narrow twin bed shifted in place. The air felt heavy. It felt like someone was holding their breath, watching her.
Her heart beat hard against her chest. She opened her eyes again, fumbling beneath the sheets until her fingers touched the handle of the knife she kept tucked between her mattress and box spring.
It was only a butter knife. Longwood Farm didn’t allow its residents anything sharper than that. But still. It made her feel better, safer. A butter knife could do a lot of damage, if you put enough muscle behind it.
Samantha curled her fingers around the cool metal handle and, without realizing what she was doing, began to hum under her breath. The words to an old Prince song floated through her head.
The woman in the bunk next to her groaned and turned over in her sleep. She was new to the community, in for depression. Samantha was in for schizoaffective disorder. Technically. What she really had wasn’t so easily diagnosed.
She pressed her lips together, heat rising in her cheeks. She’d had that song stuck in her head for over thirty years. She hardly even noticed when she started humming it, anymore.
Stop it, she told herself. Go to sleep.
She closed her eyes.
Maybe I’m just too . . .
She opened her eyes. She’d definitely heard that. Had she started humming again? A glance at the next bunk told her no, she hadn’t. Her roommate was now fast asleep, mouth slightly open, snoring softly, even as the music filled the room and grew louder, practically pulsing off the walls, and drifting down the hall.
Samantha sat up, looked toward the door. She squinted. Just there, in the inch of space between the bottom of the closed door and the scarred, wooden floorboards, she saw a kind of dizzy, shifting light. It danced across the floor outside her dorm, casting off rainbow shards of color.
Samantha felt a bead of sweat drip down her back to the base of her spine.
That light . . . It was like the light of a disco ball.
She put one foot on the floor, and then the other.
It’s not real, she told herself. It’s the disease, it’s all in your head. Her doctors had spent thirty-two years drilling those lies into her, and she’d never once believed them, so it was hard to convince herself that they were true now.
She crept toward the door and pressed her ear to the wood.
The music was still out there. Maybe I’m just like my father . . .
All in your head, she told herself again. She tightened her grip on the little butter knife. Or maybe you’re dreaming. Maybe you finally fell asleep, and now you’re dreaming of your senior prom . . .
That would’ve been a logical thing to think, except that Samantha had barely slept in over three decades, and when she had, she’d never dreamed.
Something moved over her shoulder. It was light as a feather’s brush, barely there at all. Samantha flinched and went to swat it away, thinking a bug must’ve gotten in through the window.
But it wasn’t a bug. It was a single piece of confetti. Samantha held it on the tip of her finger and thought of him. His terrible face, his rasp of a voice.
I’ll be back for you.
The Unleashed hits shelves July 7! Pre-order your copy here!