The Fright Stuff

Shirley Jackson Award Winners

Hey‌ ‌there‌ horror fans, ‌I’m‌ ‌Jessica‌ ‌Avery‌ ‌and‌ ‌I’ll‌ ‌be‌ ‌delivering‌ ‌your‌ ‌weekly‌ ‌brief‌ ‌of‌ ‌all‌ ‌that’s‌ ‌ghastly‌ ‌and‌ ‌grim‌ ‌in‌ ‌the‌ ‌world‌ ‌of‌ ‌Horror.‌ ‌Whether‌ ‌you’re‌ ‌looking‌ ‌for‌ ‌a‌ ‌backlist‌ ‌book‌ ‌that‌ ‌will‌ ‌give‌‌ you‌ ‌the‌ ‌willies,‌ ‌a‌ ‌terrifying‌ ‌new‌ ‌release,‌ ‌or‌ ‌the‌ ‌latest‌ ‌in‌ ‌horror‌ ‌community‌ ‌news,‌ ‌you’ll‌ ‌find‌ ‌it‌ ‌here‌ in‌ ‌The‌ ‌Fright‌ ‌Stuff.

Last week the winners of the 2022 Shirley Jackson Awards were announced! So I thought this week we’d take a look at some of the winning titles. I only have room to highlight a few of the books that I’m most excited about, but it’s an amazing selection this year, and I highly recommend that you check out the whole list.

But first! This: If you’re looking for a new bookish podcast to add to your life, be sure to check out First Edition, where co-founder Jeff O’Neal explores the wide bookish world. Subscribe to hear what’s new and exciting in the world of books and publishing, and stay to hear Book Riot’s editors pick the “it” book of the month.

Now let’s talk horror.

Bookish Goods

scary stories to tell in the dark pin by abracadaverapparelco

Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark Pin by AbracadaverApparelCo

An ode to one of the most beloved collections of scary stories, this pin by Abracadaver Apparel Co. is a must have for the Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark fan. Abracadaver has a number of macabre and horror inspired pins, stickers, and more, so if this pin catches your eye, be sure to check out the rest of the shop.


New Releases

cover of cruel angels past sundown by hailey piper

Cruel Angels Past Sundown by Hailey Piper

Happy New Book Day to Hailey Piper’s newest work of horror, Cruel Angels Past Sundown. Horror Western fans hold on to your hats! Set in New Mexico Territory in 1882, Cruel Angels Past Sundown is about a woman, Annette, and her husband, whose life together is violently and irrevocably interrupted one day at sunset when a naked, pregnant woman stumbles onto their ranch. Escaping the bloodshed that follows, Annette flees to the nearby town. But the nightmare of that night has followed her to Low’s Bend. If she wants to survive the hell that’s coming, she’ll have to put her trust in new friends and face down an evil more frightening than anything she has yet encountered.

cover of infested by angel luis colon

Infested by Angel Luis Colón

And an equally happy publication day to Angel Luis Colón’s terrifying new YA horror novel, Infested, which has far, far too many cockroaches on the cover, and even more (figuratively) between its pages. Sob. Rising high school senior Manny’s summer plans are thrown into disarray when his parents announce a sudden move from their home in Texas to the Bronx. Rather than spending his summer with friends, Manny ends up spending it working in the luxury condo building his stepfather is managing. Which ought to be, at worst, boring, but certainly not dangerous. Until, that is, contractors start going missing. What’s happening to the building’s workers, why does it feel like Manny has roaches crawling under his skin, and what does this all have to do with the building’s seemingly friendly exterminator, Mr. Mueller?

For a more comprehensive list, check out our New Books newsletter!

Riot Recommendations

cover of we are here to hurt each other by paula ashe cover

We Are Here to Hurt Each Other by Paula D. Ashe

Paula D. Ashe’s We Are Here to Hurt Each Other won the Shirley Jackson for best single-author collection, and rightly so! It’s a dark and horrifying collection of 12 stories full of gore and decay. If you’re a fan of horror that leaves you feeling uneasy in your skin, this is the collection for you. Just looking at that cover creeps me out! Hello terrifying teeth creature of my nightmares. If you’ve been reading Fright Stuff for a while, you know that I love a collection. I think they’re one of the best ways to get acquainted with a new author, so go pick up a copy of We Are Here to Hurt Each Other today.

the cover of the bone lantern by angela slatter

The Bone Lantern by Angela Slatter

Angela Slatter won best novella this year with The Bone Lantern. The Bone Lantern is about a woman playing storyteller for the strange creature that visits her campfire one night. Intent on prolonging her survival until she can escape, Selke offers the creature her dinner and spins it a series of dark and fantastical tales. There’s a young witch, trying to survive the court of a dangerous prince with a penchant for killing his wives, a magical harp that was created to help its maker seek revenge, and the story of Selke’s own quest for something called the bone lantern.

cover image for The Devil Takes You Home

The Devil Takes You Home by Gabino Iglesias

Congratulations, last but definitely not least, to Gabino Iglesias, whose The Devil Takes You Home tied for best novel! The Devil Takes You Home is about a man, Mario, who takes a job as a hired gun in order to pay for his daughter’s medical bills. Only to find that he’s particularly good at the violent work his new job entails. But when the job that was supposed to be his last takes a terrifying and inexplicable turn for the worse, Mario will find himself on a dangerous journey through Texas and across the border. There’s $200,000 waiting for him on the other side of this job, and a life beyond his career as a hitman. If Mario can survive long enough to claim it.

As always, you can catch me on twitter at @JtheBookworm, where I try to keep up on all that’s new and frightening.