I was drawn to the cover of Where Darkness Blooms by Andrea Hannah and pulled in by the synopsis. Welcome to the town of Bishop known for endless fields of sunflowers, recurring wind storms and missing women. You’ll want to get cozy for this dark tale as sisters not of blood but shared loss fight for their lives and others.
by Andrea Hannah
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Andrea Hannah's Where Darkness Blooms is a supernatural thriller about an eerie town where the sunflowers whisper secrets and the land hungers for blood.
The town of Bishop is known for exactly two things: recurring windstorms and an endless field of sunflowers that stretches farther than the eye can see. And women—missing women. So when three more women disappear one stormy night, no one in Bishop is surprised. The case is closed and their daughters are left in their dusty shared house with the shattered pieces of their lives. Until the wind kicks up a terrible secret at their mothers’ much-delayed memorial.
With secrets come the lies each of the girls is forced to confront. After caring for the other girls, Delilah would like to move on with her boyfriend, Bennett, but she can’t bear his touch. Whitney has already lost both her mother and her girlfriend, Eleanor, and now her only solace is an old weathervane that seems to whisper to her. Jude, Whitney's twin sister, would rather ignore it all, but the wind kicks up her secret too: the summer fling she had with Delilah's boyfriend. And more than anything, Bo wants answers and she wants them now. Something happened to their mothers and the townsfolk know what it was. She’s sure of it.
Bishop has always been a strange town. But what the girls don’t know is that Bishop was founded on blood—and now it craves theirs.
The story opens with a prologue, and we learn how the town was founded. Fast forward and we are in the dilapidated farmhouse where Delilah, Jude, Whitney and Bo live. They’ve been alone since their mothers disappeared two years ago. Delilah is mourning not just the loss of her mother, but Eleanor, the girl that made her stomach flip-flop. Elenor dropped dead in her front yard, just another unexplained female death in this town’s history. Bo is angry, so furious. Jude likes to pretend all is well and Whitney is dating the boy Delilah shared an evening with… the very night their mothers went missing.
Strange, unexplained wind storms, voices carried on the wind, and sunflowers that are always watching, waiting, and listening.
When the town builds a memorial to the girls’ mothers, things come to a head. Eleanor is speaking to Delilah, Whitney is looking for answers, and Bo has found a knife. The tale that unfolds pulled me in as we received perspectives of the girls and the wind kicked up. This town holds a dark secret, one that affects the woman and it’s hungry. Starving.
I thought Hannah did a good job of laying down the history and building the suspense. I’ve always been creeped out by tall fields of vegetation thanks to King and Hill. The tale was dark and atmospheric, with supernatural elements. The ending left me satisfied, but I won’t be visiting any rural towns called Bishop.
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