Straub has always excelled at psychological horror, and his latest suspenseful offering is no exception. Respected young adult author Willy Patrick hides a dreadful secret. Her husband and daughter are dead, but lately Willy's been tortured by the overwhelming sense that her daughter is alive, waiting to be rescued.

As Willy begins to fear for her sanity, she flees to New York, where she meets horror novelist Timothy Underhill. Struggling as well, he has begun to see ghosts and receive e-mails from people he knows are dead. The creepy parallels between Timothy's newest manuscript and Willy's life lead to the two joining forces to confront an unknown evil.

Straub cleverly makes use of his recent Lost Boy, Lost Girl, suggesting that the earlier novel has something to do with Timothy and Willy's strange situation. The two main characters, though flawed, are sympathetic, which makes the terrors they face all the more dreadful. The tension builds from the first page, culminating in a finale readers will find impossible to put down—and might want to read in the daylight. (Oct., 352 pp., $21.95)
Reviewed by: 
Jen Talley Exum