You’re returning to your childhood home for the first time in twelve years. Your job is to watch your mother die and then clean out the house. There’s a stranger living in the shed because your mother’s been cashing in on the fact that your father, who built the house, was a serial killer. Everyone in town hates you because of who your father was.
Welcome to Vera’s world.
The house was the same, but everything everything everything was different.
This is my first Sarah Gailey book and it was amazing! It was unsettling in the best way possible.
I know what it is to love a ‘monster’. Some of Vera’s responses to hers were scarily familiar. Others were (thankfully) more foreign. The ritual she completed to ensure her safety as a child made complete sense to me, as did its reappearance when she returned to Crowder House.
They remembered what they were supposed to do to keep her safe, remembered from when she was young enough to develop a superstition without reasoning herself out of it.
This book introduced me to a mother-daughter relationship that has been twisted and contaminated by their shared history. This is a story that explores the power of secrets to change you and a past that no longer wants to remain in the shadows.
It’s about loneliness and belonging, what makes a house a home and the inexplicable loudness of the things have been left unsaid in our lives.
Lemonade will never be the same.
I want to see.
Content warnings include domestic abuse.
Thank you so much to NetGalley and Hodder & Stoughton for the opportunity to read this book.
Once Upon a Blurb
“Come home.” Vera’s mother called and Vera obeyed. In spite of their long estrangement, in spite of the memories – she’s come back to the home of a serial killer. Back to face the love she had for her father and the bodies he buried there.
Coming home is hard enough for Vera, and to make things worse, she and her mother aren’t alone. A parasitic artist has moved into the guest house out back, and is slowly stripping Vera’s childhood for spare parts. He insists that he isn’t the one leaving notes around the house in her father’s handwriting… but who else could it possibly be?
There are secrets yet undiscovered in the foundations of the notorious Crowder House. Vera must face them, and find out for herself just how deep the rot goes.