Clever Creatures of the Night

$18.99 USD

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In this gripping literary horror, Case’s best friend Drea goes missing, forcing her into a bizarre, cultlike—and possibly murderous world—perfect for fans of The Honeys and Mexican Gothic.

Something bad happened here.

When Case arrives at a run-down, ivy-covered house tucked deep in the West Texas woods, an ashy haze lingers in the air and the sky is tissue-paper pink. Her best friend Drea has been living here with a few classmates Case has never met, and Drea asked her to visit in a letter dated two weeks ago.

But now Drea is nowhere to be found.

Drea’s roommates can’t—or won’t—answer questions, leaving Case to search alone. She finds bits of Drea’s journal hidden in the tiles of the bathroom wall, in a beat-up cooler by the muddy river, wedged into the frame of her closet door. As Case pieces together Drea’s life in this strange house, the roommates’ behavior puts her increasingly on edge—and she’s not the only one. The animals nearby are lashing out, attacking each other, threatening the humans.

Something bad happened in this house. Something that must be connected to Drea’s disappearance. And if she gets too close to the truth, Case just might be next.

Samantha Mabry is the author of A Fierce and Subtle Poison; All the Wind in the World, which was longlisted for a National Book Award; Tigers, Not Daughters; and, most recently, Clever Creatures of the Night. In addition to writing, Samantha teaches college-level composition at Southern Methodist University and is the mother of an energetic young son. Samantha and her family divide their time between Dallas and Mineral Wells, Texas

"Mabry weaves dread through the air like smoke in this literary horror novel set in the aftermath of a cataclysmic natural disaster…Mabry’s blend of gritty realism and ethereal fantastic elements create a spine-chilling read about our relationship with nature, the consequences of disasters, and our humanity in the face of them."

"Mabry’s unique, twisted, literary thriller is packed with brutally honest depictions of the violence of nature and the cycle of life and death.... Throughout this artfully crafted novel, Case explores past trauma, which bonded her to her friend—a fire in which Drea made it out unscathed and Case did not.
VERDICT An honest depiction of young adults trying to find their place in the world, recommended for teens who love poetic language and endings that leave them craving more."—School Library Journal

"A master class in atmosphere with a literary bent and a few surprising turns up its creepy sleeve… a haunting story about friendship and survival that also includes a good amount of violence and a few scenes in which feral hogs and hawks cause a lot of chaos. This fast, entertaining novel will surely please YA readers regardless of their age."—Locus

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