When it comes to horror fiction, location is everything. In these forthcoming novels, spooky settings—a remote highway in Siberia, a blood-smeared spaceship, an American South stalked by a serial killer—pave the way for even spookier narratives.

Dead Silence

S.A. Barnes. Nightfire, Jan. 2022

Billed by the publisher as “Titanic meets The Shining,” this horror-in-space novel centers on a soon-to-be-unemployed leader of a spacecraft repair crew, Claire, who receives a startling distress signal. The luxury space liner Aurora vanished on its maiden voyage but has reappeared, and someone on board is still alive. When Claire’s crew boards the liner, they’re met by strange whispers and blood on the walls.


Road of Bones

Christopher Golden. St. Martin’s, Jan. 2022

Siberia’s Kolyma Highway—1,200 miles of mostly deserted roads built by gulag laborers under Stalin—holds the bones of hundreds of thousands of workers who died while constructing it and were left, for expediency’s sake, under the permafrost. In Golden’s take, a documentary film producer travels down the road accompanied by a local Yakut guide, discovering an army of angry ghosts.

Such a Pretty Smile

Kristi DeMeester. St. Martin’s, Jan. 2022

DeMeester’s latest (following Beneath and Everything That’s Underneath) presents dueling narratives—one focused on a young girl named Lila in present-day suburban Atlanta, and the other focused on Lila’s mother, an artist named Catherine, in pre-Katrina New Orleans—that both revolve around mental illness and gender-based violence. PW’s review said the book “will leave readers doubting reality as the uncanny merges with the real-world horrors of a young girl coming of age.”



Catriona Ward. Nightfire, Mar. 2022

The protagonist of Ward’s novel, Rob, has left her past behind for a happy domestic life, eager to forget her unorthodox childhood in her family’s home, Sundial, a survivalist enclave in the Mojave Desert. But when Rob’s young daughter begins whispering to invisible people, and collecting tiny bones, she realizes that the ghosts of her past are far from gone.


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