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Clever Creatures of the Night (Hardcover)

Clever Creatures of the Night By Samantha Mabry Cover Image
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In this gripping literary horror, Case’s best friend Drea goes missing, forcing her into a bizarre, cultlike—and possibly murderous world—perfect for fans of The Honeys and Mexican Gothic.

Something bad happened here.

When Case arrives at a run-down, ivy-covered house tucked deep in the West Texas woods, an ashy haze lingers in the air and the sky is tissue-paper pink. Her best friend Drea has been living here with a few classmates Case has never met, and Drea asked her to visit in a letter dated two weeks ago.

But now Drea is nowhere to be found.

Drea’s roommates can’t—or won’t—answer questions, leaving Case to search alone. She finds bits of Drea’s journal hidden in the tiles of the bathroom wall, in a beat-up cooler by the muddy river, wedged into the frame of her closet door. As Case pieces together Drea’s life in this strange house, the roommates’ behavior puts her increasingly on edge—and she’s not the only one. The animals nearby are lashing out, attacking each other, threatening the humans.

Something bad happened in this house. Something that must be connected to Drea’s disappearance. And if she gets too close to the truth, Case just might be next.

About the Author

Samantha Mabry is the author of A Fierce and Subtle Poison; All the Wind in the World, which was longlisted for a National Book Award; Tigers, Not Daughters; and, most recently, Clever Creatures of the Night. In addition to writing, Samantha teaches college-level composition at Southern Methodist University and is the mother of an energetic young son. Samantha and her family divide their time between Dallas and Mineral Wells, Texas. Visit her online at

Praise For…

"Mabry weaves dread through the air like smoke in this literary horror novel set in the aftermath of a cataclysmic natural disaster…Mabry’s blend of gritty realism and ethereal fantastic elements create a spine-chilling read about our relationship with nature, the consequences of disasters, and our humanity in the face of them."

"Mabry’s unique, twisted, literary thriller is packed with brutally honest depictions of the violence of nature and the cycle of life and death.... Throughout this artfully crafted novel, Case explores past trauma, which bonded her to her friend—a fire in which Drea made it out unscathed and Case did not.
VERDICT An honest depiction of young adults trying to find their place in the world, recommended for teens who love poetic language and endings that leave them craving more."—School Library Journal

"A master class in atmosphere with a literary bent and a few surprising turns up its creepy sleeve… a haunting story about friendship and survival that also includes a good amount of violence and a few scenes in which feral hogs and hawks cause a lot of chaos. This fast, entertaining novel will surely please YA readers regardless of their age."Locus

"The dreamy and dark story will appeal to suspense readers who enjoy immersive atmospheres."—Youth Services Book Review

"Most terrifying, however, is a total lack of motive for violence from everyone involved, even Case herself... The threat, therefore, is ever-present but unpredictable, on-screen but still amorphous. As in Mabry’s previous books, closure comes hard earned here and not complete, leaving readers with a distinct sense of unease."—The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

"A chilling character study… [that] delivers an emotional intensity that will appeal to fans of atmospheric thrillers and character-driven psychological suspense."
 —Kirkus Reviews

"The evocative setting—complete with eerie woods, a claustrophobic mountain landscape, and the sudden appearance of aggressive animals—ups the tension of this jam-packed read, which… stars a heroine worth rooting for."—Publishers Weekly

Praise for Samantha Mabry:

* “Will haunt—and empower—readers." Kirkus Reviews, starred review (Tigers, Not Daughters)

* “Engaging, heartfelt.” SLJ, starred review (Tigers, Not Daughters)

* "It lays its characters utterly and unforgettably bare.” Booklist, starred review (Tigers, Not Daughters

* “Mabry speaks gracefully to the transformative power of grief.” Publishers Weekly, starred review (Tigers, Not Daughters)

* "Lyrical…empowering."Shelf Awareness, starred review (Tigers, Not Daughters

* "Quietly searing.” BCCB, starred review (Tigers, Not Daughters) 

* “In aching, luminous prose, Mabry crafts a story impossible to forget.” Booklist, starred review (All the Wind in the World) 

* “A fierce new world with high stakes.” SLJ, starred review (All the Wind in the World) 

* “Evocative, searing prose.” BCCB, starred review (All the Wind in the World

* “Gracefully written, mysterious.” VOYA, starred review (All the Wind in the World)

* “Will likely leave a mark on readers for days.” BCCB, starred review (A Fierce and Subtle Poison) 

"Haunting and atmospheric, with writing that crackles with a pulse of its own. A mystery that demands to be read in one sitting."—Kara Thomas, author of The Cheerleaders

"Eerie, atmospheric, and simmering with dread, Clever Creatures of the Night puts Mabry's immense talent on full display. Not to be missed."—Rory Power, New York Times bestselling author of Wilder Girls

"A riveting whiplash of a mystery set in a landscape full of threat and unsettling beauty. Clever Creatures of the Night ignites Samantha Mabry’s sinister skill in surrounding you in rising unease until you’re left trusting no one and nothing. I couldn’t put it down."

Nova Ren Suma, New York Times bestselling author of The Walls Around Us

Product Details
ISBN: 9781616208974
ISBN-10: 161620897X
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Publication Date: March 5th, 2024
Pages: 240
Language: English