Content warnings for: Abuse, animal death, death, gore, hostages, mentions of child abuse, miscarriage and rape
Based on the 1904 short story by Arthur Machen, The White People, T. Kingfisher created a contemporary retelling of what is considered one of the greatest horror tales ever written. The Twisted Ones builds on the creepy atmosphere for a modern audience.
“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.”
The Twisted Ones follows Melissa, known as Mouse, as she travels across the states to clear out her late grandmother’s house. Upon arriving, Mouse quickly discovers her grandmother was a hoarder and a rather proficient one at that! During the course of delving into her grandmother’s possessions, Mouse starts to reminisce over the few childhood memories she holds for the house, particularly those involving her step-grandfather, Frederick Cotgrave. She may not have bonded with him as a child, but when she stumbles across his dairy, she becomes obsessed with finding out who the twisted ones are and whether they live in the woods behind the house.
Alternating between Mouse, Frederick’s diary, and The Green Book, T. Kingfisher manages to juggle stories within stories with ease. Each chapter leaves you wanting more as Mouse falls deeper and deeper into the world of the twisted ones. T. Kingfisher has created an excellent piece of southern gothic horror that sits in your mind long after reading….. “and I twisted myself about like the twisted ones”
If you are looking for a creepy read that forces you to imagine true horror, The Twisted Ones should be at the very top of your list.
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