The Mansion by Ezekiel BooneWhat it's about: Tech developer Billy Stafford has fallen on hard times. When his billionaire former partner, Shawn Eagle, asks Billy to troubleshoot Eagle's new smart home AI software Nellie, Billy's curiosity (and the promise of a big paycheck) prompts him to accept.
Ghost in the machine: Nellie's menacing glitches exacerbate the discord between the embittered Billy and the arrogant Shawn, unearthing long-buried secrets...and wreaking deadly havoc.
Who it's for: technophobes and fans of Stephen King's The Shining.
Nothing to Devour by Glen HirshbergWhat it's about: Five years after surviving the harrowing massacre that decimated humans and vampires alike, a disparate group of survivors finds their fates intertwined.
Starring: librarian-turned-hostage Emilia, who's at the mercy of the bloodsucking "Invisible Man;" vampire Sophie, recovering from a brutal mauling; Jess, the leader of the human survivors living in seclusion.
Series alert: Nothing to Devour is the captivating conclusion to the Motherless Children trilogy.
Riddance: Or: The Sybil Joines Vocational School for Ghost Speakers & Hearing-Mouth... by Shelley JacksonThe premise: In 1919 Massachusetts, the worlds of the living and the dead overlap at the Sybil Joines Vocational School, where children with speech impediments find their "gifts" exploited to channel ghosts.
What happens: After a star pupil vanishes, Joines must confront a suspicious public -- and her own tragic past -- as she prepares to recover the child from the land of the dead.
What's inside: evocative newspaper articles, photographs, and diagrams heighten the novel's richly imaginative Gothic atmosphere.
Mouthful of Birds: Stories by Samanta SchweblinWhat it is: a surreal collection of 20 translated short stories that is as darkly humorous as it is disturbing.
Don't miss: The nightmarish "Headlights," in which hundreds of jilted brides sit abandoned on the side of a highway, offers witty gender commentary and an ending that is "a slug in the gut" (Library Journal).
Author alert: Argentine author Samanta Schweblin is a Man Booker International Prize finalist for her thought-provoking debut novel, Fever Dream.
There's something in the water...
MEG: Nightstalkers by Steve AltenOn the hunt: A pair of megs have escaped captivity, and it's up to shark expert Jonas Taylor to find them. Meanwhile, Jonas' vengeful son David is hoping to kill the meg who ate his girlfriend.
Series alert: Nightstalkers is the 5th installment in the New York Times bestselling MEG series, which is the basis for the recently released Jason Statham film The Meg.
Read it for: Steve Alten's enthusiastic writing; the "nice mix of horror, thriller, and adventure" (Booklist).
The Deep by Nick CutterThe hook: Luke Nelson is summoned to his brother's research lab at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean, where a mysterious substance called "ambrosia" is being studied as a possible cure for a global pandemic.
The catch: No one's heard from the scientists in days...and when Luke arrives at the station, he's confronted by escalating horrors that blur the line between reality and illusion.
Book buzz: The Deep is a claustrophobic and gory thrill ride that Clive Barker calls "utterly terrifying."
Into the Drowning Deep by Mira GrantUnder the sea: Marine biologist Victoria Stewart lost her sister seven years ago when the Atargatis disappeared while filming a mermaid mockumentary. Joining the crew for a new voyage, she hopes to discover what really happened to her sister on that fateful expedition.
Read it for: killer mermaids!
Series alert: Into the Drowning Deep is the sequel to the grim novella Rolling in the Deep, which charts the voyage of the Atargatis.
The Heavens Rise by Christopher RiceWhat it is: a page-turning coming-of-age tale set in contemporary New Orleans; a haunting exploration of family secrets, ancient evils, and what it means to be human.
What happens: Privileged teen Niquette Delongpre is exposed to a sinister parasite after immersing herself in an old well and spends the next decade grappling with the disastrous consequences of her newfound power.
Did you know? Bestselling author Christopher Rice (A Density of Souls) is the son of famed horror author Anne Rice.
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