NEW THIS WEEK: August 15, 2023

Isabel Cañas, Vampires of El Norte:
Set in the Rio Grande Valley in the 1840s, Cañas' second novel is an electrifying blend of horror and history. Among the book's many strengths is its brilliant exploration of monstrosity, which appears in both supernatural form and in the all too human oppression human beings visit on each other both individually and collectively; tellingly, the latter feels more damaging than the former. Cañas' book is at once a romance, a war narrative, a horror story, and an indictment of colonialism, strikingly different types of narratives she interweaves flawlessly. This is an immersive and original book. Its predecessor, The Hacienda, is also excellent. An added shout-out goes to Vi-An Nguyen's suitably dramatic jacket design, one of my favorite works of cover art this year and a creation that conveys the distinction and drama of Cañas' tale. You can purchase the book on Bookshop or Amazon and find out more about the author and her work on her website. (8.15.23)