cover image A Night of Screams: Latino Horror Stories

A Night of Screams: Latino Horror Stories

Edited by Richard Z. Santos. Arte Publico, $24.95 trade paper (168p) ISBN 978-1-55885-961-6

Santos (Trust Me) brings together 18 stories and four poems for a wide-ranging anthology that demonstrates the hybridity of the horror genre. Santos states in his editor’s note that he aimed to include “a little bit of everything,” and he certainly succeeds. The strongest pieces combine paranormal frights with social horrors like racism, machismo, and the struggle of migrant workers. “Indian Blood” by Marcos Damián León follows a man who discovers a mystical gift for growing crops, only to be taken advantage of by his greedy neighbors. In Flor Salcedo’s standout “La Llorona Happenings,” a woman believes she hears the desperate wails of Mexican legend La Llorona coming from outside of her apartment every night—but when she finally gathers the courage to look out the window, she sees a much worse and more immediate horror. Supernatural creatures from both Latinx and Western folklore take center stage in many of these pieces: Adrian Ernesto Cepeda puts a spin on the ghost story in “A Night of Screams in Austin, TX,” while Mónica Teresa Ortiz’s “A Curious Encounter” centers on the Chupacabra. Ranging from unsettling to all-out macabre, this anthology delivers more than just the typical jump scare. (Mar.)