I finished Burn the Dark by S.A. Hunt this week, and it was terrifyingly awesome. As a total wimp, I usually don’t go for scary books, but this mix of horror and urban fantasy has such a good premise that I had to try it.
Here’s the blurb:
Chilling Adventures of Sabrina meets Stranger Things in award-winning author S. A. Hunt’s Burn the Dark, first in the Malus Domestica horror action-adventure series about a punk YouTuber on a mission to bring down witches, one vid at a time.
Robin is a YouTube celebrity gone-viral with her intensely-realistic witch hunter series. But even her millions of followers don’t know the truth: her series isn’t fiction.
Her ultimate goal is to seek revenge against the coven of witches who wronged her mother long ago. Returning home to the rural town of Blackfield, Robin meets friends new and old on her quest for justice. But then, a mysterious threat known as the Red Lord interferes with her plans….
Sounds cool, right? I love the idea of actual videos of the supernatural hiding in plain sight as a YouTube series. I’ve read a lot of books about monster hunters but have never come across one who funded their hunt through ad revenue and merchandising, which is frankly brilliant.
But I’m not here to talk about the story’s hook–or the awesome ensemble cast and twisty plot. I’m just here to rank the scenes that scared the pants off me. This is a spoiler-heavy post, so if you’re looking for a review that doesn’t go into detail, stop reading now.
The top 5 scariest parts in my opinion are:
- When the nightmarish Red Lord who’s been stalking Robin throughout the book appears by her bedside and then disintegrates into hundreds of spiders.
- The whole thing about witches turning people into trees and then harvesting flesh apples that bleed when bitten.
- The abandoned amusement park in the middle of the woods–even more when we learn its history later.
- The cats. Oh, the cats. Cat-lovers, don’t read this book. You’ll never look at them the same way again.
- When Robin vomits up live moths after her confrontation with one of the witches… and then more insects start coming out of her skin. 🤢
So there’s my nightmare-fuel for the rest of the week, and it barely scratches the surface of all the fear-inspiring scenes in the book. If you’ve read it, let me know what you found the scariest. And do you prefer the horror or cozy side of urban fantasy? Sound off in the comments.