Top New Horror Books in January 2022

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Ring in the New Year with exorcisms, dreamscapes, and a true crime writer’s take on a haunted house. Read on for January 2022’s top horror tales long and short!

The Wakening by JG Faherty

Type: Novel
Publisher: Flame Tree Press
Release date: Jan. 18

Den of Geek says: 2022 could use an exorcism to kick things off, courtesy of the Bram Stoker Award-winning JG Faherty.

Publisher’s summary: A team of paranormal investigators, a priest and a defrocked priest with a dark secret join forces to combat of a vengeful ancient demon, and the evil spreading throughout a small New York town.

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Fifty years ago, Father Leo Bonaventura, a young exorcist, cast a demon out from a young boy in Central America. The demon, Asmodeus, vowed revenge. Now the demon has returned, in the same town where Bonaventura is a retired priest nearing the end of his life.

In a series of not-so-coincidental events, the possession of a young girl brings together an unlikely group of people, all of whom are linked in their pasts in some way: A group of paranormal investigators, including twin psychics. Robert Lockhart, a defrocked priest with a dark secret that only the twins know. A father whose dead wife was a college girlfriend of Robert’s and once conjured an evil spirit with him through a Ouiji board.

Now they must all join forces and help Father Bonaventura rid the town not only of Asmodeus, but also the plague of poltergeists that have followed the demon into our world.

Buy The Wakening by JG Faherty.

Mestiza Blood by V. Castro

Type: Short story anthology
Publisher: Flame Tree Press
Release date: Jan. 18

Den of Geek says: This collection sounds like it should be experienced in the dreamlike state in which it is presented: one story or novella at a time, divining meaning from them, before passing into the next.

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Publisher’s summary: A short story collection of nightmares, dreams, desire 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.

From the lauded author of The Queen of the Cicadas (which picked up starred reviews from PWKirkus and Booklist who called her “a dynamic and innovative voice”) comes a short story collection of nightmares, dreams, desire and visions focused on the Chicana experience.

V. Castro weaves urban legend, folklore, life experience and heartache in this personal journey beginning in south Texas: a bar where a devil dances the night away; a street fight in a neighborhood that may not have been a fight after all; a vengeful chola at the beginning of the apocalypse; mind swapping in the not so far future; satan who falls and finds herself in a brothel in Amsterdam; the keys to Mictlan given to a woman after she dies during a pandemic.

The collection finishes with two longer tales: The Final Porn Star is a twist on the final girl trope and slasher, with a creature from Mexican folklore; and Truck Stop is an erotic horror romance with two hearts: a video store and a truck stop.

Buy Mestiza Blood by V. Castro.

Devil House by John Darnielle

Type: Novel
Publisher: MCD
Release date: Jan. 25

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Den of Geek says: Just look at that cover—don’t you get a nostalgic shiver for vintage horror? And as the follow-up to Wolf in White Van… you know it’s gonna be chillingly meta in the best way.

Publisher’s summary: From John Darnielle, the New York Times bestselling author and the singer-songwriter of the Mountain Goats, comes an epic, gripping novel about murder, truth, and the dangers of storytelling.

Gage Chandler is descended from kings. That’s what his mother always told him. Years later, he is a true crime writer, with one grisly success—and a movie adaptation—to his name, along with a series of subsequent less notable efforts. But now he is being offered the chance for the big break: to move into the house where a pair of briefly notorious murders occurred, apparently the work of disaffected teens during the Satanic Panic of the 1980s. Chandler finds himself in Milpitas, California, a small town whose name rings a bell––his closest childhood friend lived there, once upon a time. He begins his research with diligence and enthusiasm, but soon the story leads him into a puzzle he never expected—back into his own work and what it means, back to the very core of what he does and who he is.

Devil House is John Darnielle’s most ambitious work yet, a book that blurs the line between fact and fiction, that combines daring formal experimentation with a spellbinding tale of crime, writing, memory, and artistic obsession.

Buy Devil House by John Darnielle.

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