“With this chilling debut, a young woman returns home to put some closure on her sister’s mysterious death, only to discover there really is a monster in the woods, and it’s been waiting.”
Brigit’s older sister Emma died sixteen years ago. She simply walked into the wood near their hometown of Ellis Creek and never walked out. Townsfolk said Emma was troubled. Seems she was convinced there was a monster living among those trees. The tragedy marked Brigit deeply, so she left town and never looked back.
Along with her cameraman, Ian, Brigit goes around the country investigating paranormal activities. Sure, she fakes the results, but when she learns of two missing teenagers back home in Ellis Creek, something draws Brigit back. Once she starts researching, she discovers parallels to the current case and Emma’s death.
And then there’s the strange things happening to Brigit, trees appearing in her bedroom at night, a familiar laugh watching her in the darkness. And Emma’s voice on the phone, reminding her sister to finish what they started.
More and more, it looks like Emma was right: there is a monster in Ellis Creek, and it’s waited a long time for Brigit to come home.
Why we’re excited about this book:
The first of a slew of horror titles releasing early March, Jaq Evans debut novel is getting a fair share of the early buzz, and the hype is building. Evans grew up in foothills in Virginia’s Blue Ridge and now calls the mountains in Seattle home, and their short fiction has graced the pages of such publications as Three-Lobed Burning Eye, Medium, and Fusion Fragment among others. With this chilling debut, a young woman returns home to put some closure on her sister’s mysterious death, only to discover there really is a monster in the woods, and it’s been waiting.” Christa Carmen (The Daughters of Block Island) says: “Utterly unsettling and wildly original, What Grows in the Dark is an authentic and atmospheric reading experience and a triumph of a horror debut. Jaq Evans isn’t satisfied with crafting a terrifying narrative to slice into your nightmares with X-Acto knife precision; her unflinching prose will ensnare you in a twisting knot of dread as thick as a pine copse … The only way out is to follow Evans’s exquisitely-realized characters through the living, breathing, growing dark.”, Keith Rosson (Fever House) says: “Through mounting dread, with every turn of the page, What Grows in the Dark explores—terrifyingly so—the notions of family, indebtedness, and how the past never really lets us go.”, and Robert Levy (The Glittering World) says: “Jaq Evans’s dazzling exploration of grief, identity, and the ties that bind is a powerful and unflinching journey into the hidden corners of the human heart. Compulsively readable and unfurling with the seductive beauty of a night-blooming flower, What Grows in the Dark is a thrill ride of a debut.”
Releasing from MIRA 5 March 2024, What Grows in the Dark by Jaq Evans is available for pre-order now.