The Twisted Ones by T. Kingfisher

“Then I made faces like the faces on the rocks, and I twisted myself about like the twisted ones, and I lay down flat on the ground like the dead ones.”

Isn’t that a wonderfully creepy line? Every time it was repeated throughout this very entertaining book, I got chills.

I was expecting horror, and The Twisted Ones does deliver on that, with a pervasive, folksy-gothic atmosphere and some seriously unsettling moments. I was not expecting such a fresh, sarcastic narrator voice and so much humor weaved into the story, but both only added to my enjoyment.

The story starts with our narrator, a thirty something (maybe forty something?) single woman called Mouse and her adorably dumb dog, Bongo, heading into backwoods North Carolina on a mission. Mouse’s mean and nasty old grandmother has died, and Mouse is tasked with cleaning out her home. She discovers that grandma was a hoarder, and begins trying to sort through the mess. In the process, Mouse discovers the journal of her also-deceased step-grandfather, which contains the quote above, and soon strange things start to go bump in the night. And look in the windows in the middle of the night.

I’m not giving away any spoilers, but suffice it to say the things that Mouse and Bongo encounter in the woods outside are terrifying, and the book has more than a few scary moments. The pace is fast, the book is surprisingly modern, the writing is solid, and Mouse is a fantastic character. I loved her wit and realness, and maybe most of all her relationship with her dog.

Speaking of the dog, can I just say how refreshing to was to know early on that the dog was going to make it? Hooray for horror that doesn’t kill off the pet, and double hooray for an author who will tell us that upfront. 🙌🏻

I really liked this book… another perfect read for my October #screamathon. Thanks to the publisher and NetGalley a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

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