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She Is a Haunting (Hardcover)
March/April 2023 Kids Indie Next List
“Jaw-clenching gothic and sapphic perfection! As is the case with haunted houses, everything about this book drew me in and kept me rapt until the very last word.”
— Valeria Salas Ibarra, Front Street Books, Alpine, TX
Instant New York Times and Indie Bestseller!
This house eats and is eaten . . .
"A riveting debut from a remarkable new voice! Trang Thanh Tran weaves an impressive gothic mystery in which Jade's father is determined to restore a decrepit home to its former glory and Jade is the only person who feels the soul-crushing devastation of colonialism lingering within its walls." --Angeline Boulley, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Firekeeper's Daughter
A House with a terrifying appetite haunts a broken family in this atmospheric horror, perfect for fans of Mexican Gothic.
When Jade Nguyen arrives in Vietnam for a visit with her estranged father, she has one goal: survive five weeks pretending to be a happy family in the French colonial house Ba is restoring. She's always lied to fit in, so if she's straight enough, Vietnamese enough, American enough, she can get out with the college money he promised.
But the house has other plans. Night after night, Jade wakes up paralyzed. The walls exude a thrumming sound while bugs leave their legs and feelers in places they don't belong. She finds curious traces of her ancestors in the gardens they once tended. And at night Jade can't ignore the ghost of the beautiful bride who leaves cryptic warnings: Don't eat.
Neither Ba nor her sweet sister Lily believe that there is anything strange happening. With help from a delinquent girl, Jade will prove this house--the home they have always wanted--will not rest until it destroys them. Maybe, this time, she can keep her family together. As she roots out the house's rot, she must also face the truth of who she is and who she must become to save them all.
About the Author
Trang Thanh Tran writes speculative stories with big emotions about food, belonging and the Vietnamese diaspora. They grew up in a big family in Philadelphia, then abandoned degrees in sociology and public health to tell stories in Georgia. When not writing, they can be found over-caffeinating on iced coffee and watching zombie movies. She Is a Haunting is their debut novel. Connect with them on Twitter @nvtran or their website www.trangthanhtran.com.
“A riveting debut from a remarkable new voice! Trang Thanh Tran weaves an impressive gothic mystery in which Jade's father is determined to restore a decrepit home to its former glory and Jade is the only person who feels the soul-crushing devastation of colonialism lingering within its walls.” —Angeline Boulley, #1 New York Times bestselling author of FIREKEEPER'S DAUGHTER
“She Is a Haunting is exactly the kind of book I love--gorgeous prose, a deliciously terrifying atmosphere, incisive thematic resonance, and a gloriously complex heroine. Jade is an unforgettable character, all tender longings and sharp edges, and readers everywhere will root for her just as hard as I did. Put it on your shelf next to Rebecca and The Haunting of Hill House. An incredible, riveting debut.” —Claire Legrand, New York Times bestselling author of FURYBORN and SAWKILL GIRLS
“This exquisitely disturbing tale of identity and colonialism and intergenerational trauma will eat its way under your skin and live there forever. Read this one with the lights on. I'm ready to be haunted by whatever Trang Thanh Tran writes next.” —Emily X.R. Pan, New York Times bestselling author
“She Is a Haunting is a beguiling feast of a book that drew me in immediately with its exquisitely unsettling atmosphere, vivid prose, and creeping horrors--both supernatural and all too human.” —Kate Alice Marshall, author of I AM STILL ALIVE and RULES FOR VANISHING
“Electric and unsettling with a deliciously rich theme readers will sink their teeth into, She Is a Haunting is my absolute favorite new entry in the gothic genre. Layers of identity, fright, and heartfelt romance are tenderly laid one over the other, creating a richly complex story that questions the very nature of a haunting. Trang Thanh Tran is a force to be reckoned with.” —Courtney Gould, award-winning author of THE DEAD AND THE DARK
“A satisfying blend of traditional horror with modern themes and concerns. Both the ghosts and the humans in this richly layered work are alluring and deadly.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"Eerie and beautifully written . . . Recommended for all libraries, especially for those serving readers seeking Asian and Asian American voices." —School Library Journal
“A welcome addition to the quickly growing canon of culturally diverse, queer horror. . . . Teens with a penchant for the grotesque will delight in unfolding, bit by rotting bit.” —BookPage
“An opaque and delicate ghost story for strong readers.” —Booklist
“This is a multi-layered exemplar of the horror genre, as the terrifying supernatural aspects of this story combine with the equally horrific colonialist history of this home. . . . A compelling exploration of the dynamics of estranged families and how culture, identity, and feelings of what is home can vary dramatically from generation to generation.” —BCCB
“Gothic horror remains a perennial favorite for many readers, and teenage fans will be eager to read this . . . queer, Vietnamese take on the genre. . . . A formidable and heady entry that should delight readers.” —School Library Connection
“A satisfying Gothic coming-of-age novel in which a house, a heritage, and the uncertain future threaten to consume a college-bound woman.” —Foreword Reviews
“Tran smartly weaves Vietnamese culture and real horrors of French imperialism to deliver an eerie tale overflowing with deeply unsettling atmosphere.” —Publishers Weekly