book review

Lone Women by Victor LaValle

*Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest review.

Publication Date: March 28, 2023

Publisher: One World

Pages: 304

Genre: Horror

Rating: 5/5

Lone Women is an excellent historical horror novel. The story follows Adelaide, a black woman in the early 1910’s, who is leaving her home in California to make a homestead in Montana. The only thing that Adelaide takes with her is a bit of money and a trunk that she is very protective over.

In the early 1900’s America passed the Homestead Act which allowed a head of household to claim land which I looked up and roughly 12 percent of the people who did so were women. I found this bit of history to be an interesting backdrop to the story. LaValle’s masterful use of language made the setting so vivid and I love how seamlessly he weaved the historical aspects with the plot.

I have recommended this book to so many people since reading it last month and every time I say please just read it and let it unfold before you. When the book started I thought it was going one way and then as the story started evolving my idea of what kind of horror this was constantly shifted. And then when I finally realized what sub genre this book fits into I was blown away and amazed. There is so much to love about this book but for me the slow unraveling of what type of horror this is was an incredible experience.

This is my second time reading LaValle and I want to read everything he has ever written. His stories are so unique and his use of language is stunning. Lone Women is very character focused in the beginning and builds up to the action which might not be everyone’s cup of tea but it was definitely something that I loved. This book is so good in so many different ways and I will always remember what a great time I had reading it.


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