White Horse by Erika T. Wurth
Publication Date: November 1st, 2022
Hardcover. 320 pages.
About White Horse:
"Some people are haunted in more ways than one.
Heavy metal, ripped jeans, Stephen King novels, and the occasional beer at the White Horse have defined urban Indian Kari James’s life so far. But when her cousin Debby finds an old family bracelet that once belonged to Kari’s mother, it inadvertently calls up both her mother’s ghost and a monstrous entity, and her willful ignorance about her past is no longer sustainable…
Haunted by visions of her mother and hunted by this mysterious creature, Kari must search for what happened to her mother all those years ago. Her father, permanently disabled from a car crash, can’t help her. Her Auntie Squeaker seems to know something but isn’t eager to give it all up at once. Debby’s anxious to help, but her controlling husband keeps getting in the way. Kari’s journey toward a truth long denied by both her family and law enforcement forces her to confront her dysfunctional relationships, thoughts about a friend she lost in childhood, and her desire for the one thing she’s always wanted but could never have."
White Horse is a delightfully spooky and riveting tale of 35 year old Kari James as she learns of the existence of a bracelet that was her mother's... and that appears to be haunted by her mother as well.
What I liked: I was fully immersed in this book from page one due to the strong combination of compelling plot, great writing, and well-developed characters. Kari spends her time keeping her life on track and caring for her disabled father, and I appreciated how true to herself she was throughout the entire book. Kari really seems to know who she is and what she wants–and doesn't want–and isn't afraid to stay true to that and tell others how she feels–in a good way. It was fascinating to see her delve into discovering more about this haunted bracelet and more of the history and focus on Indigenous legend and issues. I think the author did a fantastic job crafting this story and making it both entertaining and a highly valuable read. There were also plenty of very spooky and haunting elements that makes this a perfect fall read. It also handles some fairly heavy topics related to missing Indigenous peoples, trauma, and more.
What I didn't like: I didn't have too many overt issues with this story, though it didn't necessarily stand out as a favorite for me, either. Although I liked Kari, I didn't care as much for many of the secondary characters and felt as though Debbie and her husband were particularly difficult to become invested in. I also would say that describing this as straight 'horror' is slightly misleading, and if you're going into it with the hopes of reading a strong horror novel, you might be disappointed, That being said, it's still dark and haunting and will deliver on many of those elements.
Overall, I've given White Horse four stars!
*I received a copy of White Horse courtesy of the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.*