Look Out For … The Daughters of Block Island by Christa Carmen

The Daughters of Block Island by Christa Carmen - cover“With her debut novel, Carmen presents a meta-fiction gothic/slasher hybrid that’ll keep you turning the blood-soaked pages long into the night.”

When she arrives on Block Island hunting for her birth mother, Blake Bronson soon becomes convinced she’s the heroine of a gothic novel … just like she read to escape her traumatic childhood. There seems to be no other way to explain the never-ending rain, the worn down White Hall mansion, or the ghost many claim haunts its halls. But before she can get to the end of her own nightmarish story, Blake is found dead, murdered in a claw-foot tub.

Thalia Mills receives a letter Blake sent her right before she died. Thalia travels to Block Island, a place she swore never to return. There, she learns Blake wasn’t the first to die at White Hall under mysterious circumstances. Now Thalia must learn the real reason for Blake’s death before the dark forces that want Block Island’s secrets dead and buried rise to destroy her as well.

Why we’re excited about this book:

As readers of dark and dangerous fiction know, any new fiction by Christa Carmen is a great reason to celebrate. The author of Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked, Carmen’s short-fiction has graced the pages of such publications and anthologies as Orphans of Bliss: Tales of Addiction Horror, One of Us: A Tribute to Frank Michaels Errington, Not All Monsters, Behold the Undead of Dracula, Year’s Best Hardcore Horror: Volume 2, Vastarien, Nightmare Magazine, and Outpost 28, to name a few. With her debut novel, Carmen presents a meta-fiction gothic/slasher hybrid that’ll keep you turning the blood-soaked pages long into the night. Cynthia Peleyo (Children of Chicago) says: “With its lush and exquisite language, Christa Carmen’s The Daughters of Block Island honors and explores the great gothic novels of the past, but here the rules are rewritten. Be prepared to find yourself in White Hall’s spider’s web.”, and Gwendolyn Kiste (Relunctant Immortals) says: “Christa Carmen has long been one of my favorite horror authors, and The Daughters of Block Island is further proof that she’s among the most important voices in the genre today. A clever inversion and exploration of gothic tropes, this is a debut novel unlike any other. A true macabre masterpiece, this book is a must-read.”

Why Christa’s excited about this book:

The Daughters of Block Island is my debut novel, the result of growing up reading books like The Mysteries of Udolpho and The Castle of Otranto and wanting to try my hand at decaying castles and damsels in distress. Like so many popular subgenres of horror, the gothic has been done to death, so I had to ensure I was bringing something new to readers, ultimately deciding to “make gothic meta,” with the orphaned, ill-fated heroine, Blake Bronson, believing herself to be in the quintessential gothic novel. The book was recently described by an early reader as Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca meets the Scream film franchise, and I’d say that’s a fair assessment. Hopefully, there’s a little something for everyone within its rain-spattered, scandal-ridden pages.”

Releasing from Thomas & Mercer 1 December 2023, The Daughters of Block Island by Christa Carmen is available for pre-order now.


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