Old Country

Matt Query and Harrison Query. Grand Central, $28 (320p) ISBN 978-1-5387-2120-9

The Query brothers debut with a propulsive horror novel based on Matt Query’s viral short story, “My Wife & I Bought a Ranch,” which sees a family encountering ghosts from within and without after they drop their urban lives to move into an Idaho ranch. War-traumatized Harry, his wife, Sasha, and their faithful golden retriever, Dash, move to the Teton Valley to fulfill their long-held homesteading ambitions—but they quickly realize there’s something off with their new home: with the changing of each season comes a fresh set of horrors that emerge from the valley. The couple must defend against these threats or risk losing themselves to the ghosts of the Teton Valley. The Querys nicely work the worldbuilding into the action, and though the genre conventions are trod to the point of cliché, when the horror elements hit, they hit hard. There’s a late twist that won’t work for everyone, but the Querys stick the landing with an ending that feels earned and satisfying. Fans of Joe Hill and Paul Tremblay will want to check this out. Agent: Liz Parker, Verve Talent & Literary. (July)
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