Such a Pretty Smile
by Kristi DeMeester
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Pub Date 18 Jan 2022 | Archive Date 21 Dec 2022
One of Goodreads Most Popular Horror of 2022
Named one of Esquire's Best Horror of the Year
"Brutal and shocking." - emily m. danforth
“Razor-sharp. This one will cut you.” - Christopher Golden
In this biting and electrifying novel from bold horror talent Kristi DeMeester, there’s something out there that’s murdering young women—until an overwhelmed mother and her secretive daughter refuse to live without answers any longer.
He’s known as The Cur, and he leaves no trace—except for the victims he most viciously slays every fifteen years. Young women who refuse to conform and don’t know when to shut up.
2019: Thirteen-year-old Lila Sawyer has secrets she can’t share with anyone. But when young women around her begin dying, wild speculation ensues. Soon Lila feels haunted from within, terrorized by a delicious evil that shows her how to find her voice—until she’s in danger for using it.
2004: Caroline Sawyer sees dogs everywhere that no one else seems to notice. As these snarling, teeth-bared delusions begin to take shape in the sculptures she makes in a trance-like state, her fiancé is convinced she needs help from a professional. But Caroline’s past is a dark cellar, filled with repressed memories and a lurking horror that others around her can’t understand.
As past and present demons converge, Caroline and Lila must chase the source of the unrelenting, oppressive power to its core. Brilliantly paced and unapologetically fierce, Such a Pretty Smile will make you want to stand up and rage at everyone who ever told you to shut up and smile pretty.
"Compulsive and horrifyingly entertaining." - Liz Nugent
"Wonderfully well written; the dread, the enigma, build with each scene. It’s coming of age, it’s family secrets, it’s life in the balance, too. It’s Thomas Harris, it’s Lois Duncan… but no, it’s Kristi DeMeester, in complete confident control of your experience. An outstanding story in outstanding hands." –Josh Malerman New York Times bestselling author of Bird Box
"With expert pacing and captivating characters, Kristi DeMeester’s SUCH A PRETTY SMILE is a gothic thriller that speaks to the strength of women. A darkly feminist and timely novel, I was spellbound until the final page." – Karma Brown, bestselling author of Recipe for a Perfect Wife
"Kristi DeMeester's novel is a menacing, mysterious, and righteously angry fever dream, one that hooks into you from page one. SUCH A PRETTY SMILE is unafraid to bare its feminist fangs." –Paul Tremblay, author of A Head Full of Ghosts and Survivor Song
"I've never read anything quite like SUCH A PRETTY SMILE: at turns brutal and shocking, at turns lush and evocative, and deeply disquieting throughout. This novel unsettled me at nearly every turn of the page, and that feeling has stayed with me since I closed its cover days ago. Kristi DeMeester is a highly-original voice in horror and I can't wait to see what she writes next." -emily m. danforth
"A mother and daughter fight for their lives and their sanity in Kristi DeMeester’s SUCH A PRETTY SMILE, a quietly brutal feminist horror novel about what it means to be a ‘good girl’ in a world of men—and monsters. Thoughtful, creepy, and razor-sharp. This one will cut you.” —Christopher Golden, New York Times bestselling author of Ararat and Red Hands
"Kristi DeMeester is certainly an exciting new voice. Her exploration of toxic female friendships and her deep dive into the darkest parts of the human psyche made this a riveting, compulsive and horrifyingly entertaining read." - #1 international bestselling author Liz Nugent "Darkly visceral...will leave readers doubting reality as the uncanny merges with the real-world horrors of a young girl coming of age." –Publishers Weekly
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 799 members
Feminist horror is a thing. This novel was an absolute page-turner, fast-paced and definitely thrilling but also so beautifully-written, with distinct 3-dimensional characters. It was emotional and meaningful and its feminism was rooted in realism - which was the true horror.
This is the best book I have read all year.
Thanks to Netgalley for the arc to review.
St. Martin's Press how can I thank you in words for this wild ass, amazing reviewers copy?!
Such a Pretty Smile by Kristi DeMeester has been high on my tbr list ever since I seen it on NetGalley!.
And I prayed and hoped this book would be approved!
The description here caught my attention like no other.
The eerieness this book developed was phenomenal and had me gripped to the pages.
Before I knew it, it was like 1 in the morning! Oppppssss got lost in the story!
I don't think I've enjoyed a horror fiction like I did this one. The story itself was outstanding.
Kristi is solid when it comes to things like pacing, character development, exposition, and narrative style.
A climax most readers simply will not see coming this is a brilliant story!
And I can't recommend it enough!
A solid ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ for me!
Special thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for sharing this amazing digital reviewer copy with me in exchange my honest thoughts.
I will post to my platforms closer to pub date!