“A teenage girl faces the darkest secrets of her secluded Missouri Ozarks village in an assured debut suffused with Gothic tension and atmosphere … Jude’s characters exude authenticity, and the suspense stays palpable through the final pages, as Ivy and a childhood crush seek to right wrongs—even if that means disrupting the delicate balance of a town built on false legends. Despite the story’s dark core, Jude brings her affecting, off-the-beaten-path coming-of-age tale, and its heroine, into the light.” —Publishers Weekly STARRED review
“This present-day mystery is ripe with superstition and serves up and atmospheric, authentic-feeling setting.”–Kirkus
“The development of the murder mystery mixes well with the relationship questions that Ivy struggles with throughout the story. The May Queen Murders is exceedingly original in its setting and plot. Mystery fans who are looking for something fresh will love this novel.”
“A wayward girl and a monster in the woods make a familiar tale, but Jude gets it just right, portioning out the precise amount of gore, secrets, sex, and deception to make a thrillingly dark murder mystery with touches of horror and the supernatural . . . there’s something very tempting about following that shadowy path into the unknown woods, and readers who do so may find a satisfyingly atmospheric tale.”–The Bulletin for the Center of Children’s Books
“It will appeal to readers of traditional horror titles as well as the more casual fan looking for an exciting, creepy read. The macabre descriptions sprinkled throughout are haunting and edgy and will thrill readers who like to be spooked.”—School Library Journal
“Jude vividly describes the pastoral community, cultivating a sensual sense of atmosphere with descriptions of smells, textures, and sounds.”–Booklist
“A beautifully written gothic horror novel. The well-depicted settings and Jude’s stunning, emotional prose pull readers into the story.”–RT Book Reviews
“This book weeps atmosphere. Rich, intense, and sporting a cast of characters you will fall in love with, it draws you into the sordid doings of Rowan’s Glen and doesn’t let you go.” —New York Times Best-Seller Hillary Monahan, author of Mary: The Summoning
“Dark, dangerous, and drippingly gothic.” —Gretchen McNeil, author of Ten and the Don’t Get Mad series
Two girls: one with a secret, one with a promise that she’d uncover it.
Welcome to Rowan’s Glen—a place full of old fashioned superstition and secrets. Twenty-five years back, a teenage girl was murdered after being crowned queen at the Glen’s May Day celebration, and outsiders have regarded the isolated farming community with suspicion ever since.
But that was before Ivy Templeton was even born. She’s lived in Rowan’s Glen for all of her sixteen years, and feels safe there with the company of her free-spirited cousin Heather, and their friend, Rook, son of the sheriff.
Until . . . animals start showing up dead, clearly from unnatural means. Dark omens seem to appear everywhere Ivy goes. And Heather, who used to tell Ivy everything, is sneaking off after dark with a mysterious lover.
Ivy worries her cousin could be in danger—especially after Heather is elected queen of the May Day celebration. When Heather goes missing, Ivy must come to terms with the fact that she never knew her beloved cousin—or Rowan’s Glen—as well as she thought she did.
Readers looking for horror, romance, and suspense will find it all in this chilling tale that resonates with dark beauty.