New novella forthcoming
July 9th, 2024
or ask your local bookstore!
In 2007, Beck Randall moves with his wife and teenage daughters into a cabin built in 1907 by his grandparents. Once there, daughters Tina and Lucy discover that their predecessors have left an imprint of suffering and violence the girls refer to as "The Whistler," an eerie presence infused in the nature that surrounds them. As the 1907 and 2007 storylines braid together, characters and events intrude upon each other, blurring the boundaries between eras and illustrating that people and lives are not forgotten; instead, they are woven into the fabric of the land itself. With gritty, lyrical storytelling, Let Gravity Seize the Dead is an intergenerational literary horror story featuring a blend of suspense, beauty, and terror.
Praise for Let Gravity Seize the Dead
“It’s one of the spookiest, most headlong books I’ve ever read. It might remind you, as it did me, of Shirley Jackson’s We Have Always Lived at the Castle and also of Stephen King’s The Shining. But really, it’s all Darrin Doyle, who for years has been writing marvelous books about our best intentions and our worst impulses. This is his best yet. Fair warning, though: once you start reading, you won’t be able to stop.”
—Brock Clarke, author of Who Are You, Calvin Bledsoe?
“Electric, engrossing, and immaculately written, Darrin Doyle’s seventh book is a triumphant addition to the American novella canon. Set in a lush landscape where ‘horseflies buzz like airplanes’ and ‘dead trees wear mushrooms like necklaces,’ this mystery/ghost story/Gothic dollop of haunted domesticity will grab you by the throat and refuse to let go until the last page is turned.”
—David James Poissant, author of Lake Life and The Heaven of Animals
“Darrin Doyle’s brilliant Let Gravity Seize the Dead is both wizardry and wildfire. Doyle’s rich and evocative words conjure other worlds, beyond this one, beyond life and death. I read this book both breathlessly and with rapid breathing—taking in too little and too much air—as the narrative moved between time periods and as family secrets unraveled, whistled, and called out from one generation to the next. Like the best of Poe, like Henry James’ The Turn of the Screw, like Denis Johnson’s Train Dreams, this book lures us in, alters our perception, and leaves us haunted.”
—Kelcey Ervick, author of The Keeper
“‘Want to know a person, look under the soil. That’s where the story is,’ Darrin Doyle writes in his grim and tautly interwoven ghost story, Let Gravity Seize the Dead. Violence and trauma may run deep as the forest roots through the Randall family property, but so does Doyle’s gift of language, which haunts these lean pages with lines like ‘window tarps flap like flightless birds in the night wind,’ to deliver a moody, pitch dark novella that will linger in my nightmares for quite some time.”
—Sara Lippman, author of Lech
“With Let Gravity Seize the Dead, Darrin Doyle has fashioned a story of compelling Faulknerian intensity, the evil in it emerging not just from the sins of the past but a Michigan landscape with as much malevolent presence as Annie Proulx’s Wyoming. It’s an insidious and infecting evil, an atonal whistle at night reminding you that the forests still hide the darkness our ancestors feared.”
—Naeem Murr, author of The Perfect Man