Ghosts of Blood and Bone
Marcus James, author
When four eighth-graders experience the sudden death of a school bully, they are bound and drawn back together years later by the dark secret it involves and the terrifying force hiding in the shadows, taunting them and biding its time to strike. Ghosts of Blood and Bone is a queer 'I Know What You Did Last Summer' meets Christopher Rice's 'A Density of Souls'. A lyrical and haunting exploration of trauma, love, and the loss of innocence.
James (Following the Kaehees) blends psychological thriller elements, mystery, and queer romance into a deeply unnerving tale. While a student at Proctor Junior High, Aaron Christopher was stalked and repeatedly raped by Bailey Nguyen, an unhinged adolescent, until the day Bailey died in the school bathroom. Nine years later, Aaron is still traumatized by Bailey’s cruelty, but finds solace, safety, and love when he reunites with his middle school crush, Chase Sheppard. The feeling of safety is fleeting, however, as Bailey, apparently back from the dead, pursues the couple. James creates a genuinely unsettling atmosphere while ratcheting up the tension but still allowing readers moments of relief in the sweet romance between Chase and Aaron. Though James’s overly detailed descriptions occasionally interrupt the action, the intensity picks back up for a chilling finale. Though readers may grow impatient with the pace, this frightening tale will appeal to fans of I Know What You Did Last Summer. (Self-published)