|Read a NetGalley eARC
Content and trigger warning for gore, animal violence, body horror, death of (several) dogs
I like audibly screaming when reading a horror novel. The Only Good Indians follows four childhood friends who got a little greedy on a hunting trip and are now paying the price as adults.
This book hits all the highs of horror with gruesome imagery, specific language, and a deeply personal story. It is so intimate, with several layers of lived experience that just add depth to a book that also excels at delivering thrills. What makes this story particularly terrifying is the way Jones deliberately and pointedly plays with POV. For the most part, we see the terrors unfold from either Lewis, Ricky, Cass, or Gabe’s POV, but there are some surprises, like the shift to second person told from the Elk Head Woman’s perspective. She’s scary both from a character design standpoint and the strength of her character arc.
There are so many characters in this book and none of them feel frivolous or extraneous. Jones plays with the “final girl” trope in a way that I can’t speak more about because spoilers, but it is such a great exploration.
Gross at times and makes playing basketball one-on-one an absolutely terrifying experience, definitely a favorite new release of 2020.