It’s 1915 and Adelaide Henry’s parents are dead. So she douses their house with gasoline, lights a match, and doesn’t look back. The young woman heads to Montana, dragging a heavy and mysterious steamer trunk with her, hoping to start anew and acquire a property promised by the government to “lone” women. But try as she might to keep it locked down, her trunk can’t stay closed—and when it opens, her secrets are unleashed and threaten to upend her new life in a town unfriendly to outsiders. In his fifth novel, Victor LaValle explores isolation, secrecy, and power by blending together horror and history in a new type of Western. —Meg Zukin

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