Rating: 5 out of 5.

The Drowning Kind by Jennifer McMahon, Published by Gallery Books. Releasing 06 April 2021.

Be careful when you look at your reflection in the water of the springs. Yours might not be the only face you see.


The Drowning Kind is a heartbreaking story of desperation, illness, and the lengths people will go to (and the deals they will make), to heal the ones they love.

McMahon delivers a horror-thriller with a pace that is both as languid as a swim on a summer day in the springs and as shocking as the water is cold. From jump scares to slow-burning menace, McMahon handles every element with phenomenal grace and weaves them together, along with local folklore, a present day thriller, and a historic ghost story, to bring together a beautiful and terrifying story.

But what may be even more impressive than McMahon’s narrative prowess is her command of visuals. This book is filled with beautiful imagery and vibrant scenes. Her use of reflection (the lake/mirrors) and refraction (in all the found crystal) opens the story up to the kind of analysis that makes a book worth reading more than once.

There are a couple storylines that don’t get the attention they deserve (the Declan/therapist angle in particular), and I was hoping to see those more developed. As is, they don’t add much to a story that stands perfectly well on its own.

That aside, this is a haunting, beautiful story not only worth reading, but worth reading twice.

Read it? Adding it to your TBR? Let me know in the comments or talk books with me on Goodreads!

I received an ARC of this title from the publisher in exchange for this review.


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