cover image Out There Screaming: An Anthology of New Black Horror

Out There Screaming: An Anthology of New Black Horror

Jordan Peele. Random House, $30 (400p) ISBN 978-0-593-24379-4

For this electrifying anthology, horror movie director Peele (Get Out: The Annotated Screenplay) brings together 19 Black authors to “give us their Sunken Places.” The cars have eyes in N.K. Jemisin’s “Reckless Eyeballing,” about a corrupt police officer named Carl who gets his comeuppance for wrongfully pulling people over. “Wandering Devil” by Cadwell Turnbull follows Freddy, a man driven by wanderlust and a fear of commitment, who finally finds a place—and a person—he wants to call his home, only to encounter a terrible apparition that threatens him if he stays still too long. Other authors find horror in history: in Tananarive Due’s “The Rider,” two Freedom Riders on their way to Montgomery, Ala., in 1961, are joined on their bus by a strange being whose presence may spell their doom, while “The Norwood Trouble” by Maurice Broaddus concerns a Reconstruction-era community calling upon higher powers to bring bloody justice to a lynch mob of Night Riders. These tales are all both gruesomely imaginative and firmly rooted in the realities of anti-Black racism and brutality—and there isn’t a weak one in the bunch. This is essential reading for any horror fan. (Oct.)