cover image Kingdom of Needle and Bone

Kingdom of Needle and Bone

Mira Grant. Subterranean, $40 (128p) ISBN 978-1-59606-871-1

Grant (Into the Drowning Deep), a pseudonym for Seanan McGuire, brings an infectious new horror to life in this terse novella. After Dr. Isabelle “Izzy” Gauley’s niece, Lisa Morris, becomes patient zero for a deadly new strain of the measles, 10 million people die. Lisa’s mother, Brooke, a pharmacist, tells Izzy that the waves of death are only just beginning. This disease has altered human immune systems, making them incapable of being inoculated, and susceptible to sicknesses long thought eradicated. Izzy makes a plan: take the survivors and bring them to an island, keeping them safe and healthy until a cure can be found. Cunning, calculating, and extremely ambitious, she creates a paradise that she will protect at all costs. But her guilt over Lisa’s death and the secrets of her past continue to haunt her, even as she seems to succeed. Terrifyingly foreboding, peppered with news releases and sections of testimonies, this scathing critique of the anti-vaccination movement hints at a dark future ahead. Readers will be pulled along even as they try to look away. Agent: Diana Fox, Fox Literary. (Jan.)