Published: 5 April 2023
Author: T Kingfisher
Published by: Titan Books
Length: 304 pages
Reading dates: 18-23 March 2023
In this ordinary North Carolina suburb, family secrets are always in bloom.
Samantha Montgomery pulls into the driveway of her family home to find a massive black vulture perched on the mailbox, staring at the house.
Inside, everything has changed. Gone is the eclectic warmth Sam expects; instead the walls are a sterile white. Now, it’s very important to say grace before dinner, and her mother won’t hear a word against Sam’s long-dead and little-missed grandmother, who was the first to put down roots in this small southern town.
The longer Sam stays, the stranger things get. And every day, more vultures circle overhead…
I love the horror genre – I watch a lot of horror films and TV shows but rarely read horror so I was thrilled when I was offered a proof of A House of Good Bones.
Set in North Carolina, Sam Montgomery returns to her childhood home to stay with her mum. She works as an archaeoentomologist which involves her studying insects in archaeological remains. The discovery of human remains means her latest job is on hold hence the visit home to her mum. She has been meaning to see her mum for a while – her brother has told her she is acting strangely and Sam finds she has lost a lot of weight and has redecorated in bland colours where before the house was bright and cheerful. The house used to belong to Sam’s Gran Mae (who everyone was a bit scared of) and the décor her mum has chosen reflects her taste, including some of the art work that had long been consigned to the attic.
A vulture seems to have made their mailbox it’s home which is an ominous sign! Meanwhile the roses in the garden are looking better than they ever have despite there being no insects at all in the garden. Before long strange things start happening…
This was a great read – a horror yes, but told with humour and which was creepy rather than scary. Sam is a great character – she is funny and I liked how she wasn’t particularly phased by some events that I would have been really creeped out by! She has an interesting job (I even learned a little) and fancies Phil the gardener/handy man. I really enjoyed the culmination of all the spooky events and the ending was brilliant!
With thanks to Charlotte from Titan Books for inviting me on the blog tour and sending me a proof copy of the book. Please check out what other reviewers are saying below:
About the author
T. Kingfisher is the vaguely absurd pen-name of Ursula Vernon. In another life, she writes children’s books and weird comics, and has won the Hugo, Sequoyah, and Ursa Major awards, as well as a half-dozen Junior Library Guild selections.
This is the name she uses when writing things for grown-ups.
When she is not writing, she is probably out in the garden, trying to make eye contact with butterflies.