Young Adult and Middle Grade Horror Spotlight
YA and MG Horror

YA/MG Horror Spotlight July 2021

The Ladies of Horror Fiction team is putting a spotlight on Young Adult and Middle Grade horror each month. Below we are featuring the books that were released in July as well as what our team has been reading and reviewing.

Young Adult New Releases

The River Has Teeth by Erica Waters

Lush and chilling, with razor-sharp edges and an iron core of hope, this bewitching, powerhouse novel of two girls fighting back against the violence the world visits on them will stun and enchant readers.

Girls have been going missing in the woods…

When Natasha’s sister disappears, Natasha desperately turns to Della, a local girl rumored to be a witch, in the hopes that magic will bring her sister home.

But Della has her own secrets to hide. She thinks the beast who’s responsible for the disappearances is her own mother—who was turned into a terrible monster by magic gone wrong.

Natasha is angry. Della has little to lose. Both are each other’s only hope.

From the author of Ghost Wood Song, this eerie contemporary fantasy is perfect for fans of Wilder Girls and Bone Gap.

Published July 27, 2021 by HarperTeen Bookshop | Goodreads

Small Favors by Erin A. Craig

Ellerie Downing lives in the quiet town of Amity Falls in the Blackspire Mountain range–five narrow peaks stretching into the sky like a grasping hand, bordered by a nearly impenetrable forest from which the early townsfolk fought off the devils in the woods. To this day, visitors are few and rare. But when a supply party goes missing, some worry that the monsters that once stalked the region have returned.

As fall turns to winter, more strange activities plague the town. They point to a tribe of devilish and mystical creatures who promise to fulfill the residents’ deepest desires, however grand and impossible, for just a small favor. But their true intentions are much more sinister, and Ellerie finds herself in a race against time before all of Amity Falls, her family, and the boy she loves go up in flames.

Published July 27, 2021 by Delacorte Press Bookshop | Goodreads

Middle Grade New Releases

Hardly Haunted

Hardly Haunted by Jessie Sima

From the bestselling creator of Not Quite Narwhal comes a delightfully spooky story about an old house who wants to be a home…even if her new family isn’t what she expected.

House has a problem.

She’s a little spooky. She’s a little cobwebby. Oh, no! What if she’s haunted?

She’s not sure, but . . . her hinges creak. Her pipes bang. And on windy days, the branches scritch-scratch at her windows. She tries to hold her breath and be as still as possible. If she’s on her best behavior, maybe a family will move in.

How will House ever find a family that doesn’t mind being haunted?

Published July 20, 2021 by Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers Bookshop | Goodreads

Middle Grade Preview

Rosie Paints with Ghosts by Cassie Daily

Our very own Cassie Daley is releasing Rosie Paints with Ghosts next month so we are doing a special preview spotlight! You can find out more about Rosie by visiting Cassie’s blog post Cover Reveal: Rosie Paints with Ghosts – A Spooky Illustrated Children’s book!

Young Adult Books Reviewed

Our Last Echoes by Kate Alice Marshall

This month Kathy read and loved Our Last Echoes by Kate Alice Marshall. Don’t miss her 5 star review of Our Last Echoes (“If you enjoy reading books about the paranormal, you will love Kate Alice Marshall’s Our Last Echoes.“)!

Middle Grade Books Reviewed

Be sure to check out my reviews for Crater Lake by Jennifer Killick (“This book was a lot of fun, and I adored that it had a big scifi element to it.“), The Stitchers by Lorien Lawrence (“The Stitchers is a fun – what is going on with the old people in this neighborhood – spooky delight.“), and The Nefarious Necklace by K.A. Evans (“I think kids that have grown up reading Magic Treehouse would love to graduate into reading The Nefarious Necklace.“) here: Mini Middle Grade Horror Reviews


Jen is one of our LOHF Admins. She creates posts and manages the technical side of the Ladies of Horror Fiction website.

You can also find Jen on her blog Book Den, Twitter as @bookden, Instagram as @bookdenjen, on Goodreads, and Letterboxd.

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