I had the immense privilege to read an advance copy of Heart, Haunt, Havoc by the talented Freydis Moon. While I’ve read their work before, each new piece is more intricate than the last. Heart follows exorcist Colin Hart as he’s called to clean a towering house being renovated in Colorado. Whatever stalks this house–and its handsome occupant, the secretive Bishop Martinez–proves to be more complicated than Colin planned, however. The two must wade through piles of secrets, broken promises, and heartbreak or risk being haunted for the rest of their lives, if they survive at all.
Heart, Haunt, Havoc is an atmospheric treat, filled with magic, faith, and longing. As someone who has spent a lot of time in old buildings, Moon captures the uniquely living way that old buildings respond to us as they shift and breathe. The tale spins wholesome and clever one minute, then heart wrenching and deadly the next, all with the steady, unyielding advance of the predator that haunts the house itself. While the setting becomes a character in itself, I’d be remiss in not mentioning how authentic each character’s queerness feels, from the reserved Colin to complex Bishop. The tale leaves us filled with a sensation of hard-won peace, relief, and a spark of hope and I can only cross my fingers that we will see some of these faces again.
Recommended for lovers of the modern gothic romance who know how heartbreak haunts us. 5 out of 5 stars.