Ivy's summer break kicks off with an accident, a punishment, and a mystery: a stranger whose appearance in the middle of the road, in the middle of the night, heralds a string of increasingly unsettling events. As the days pass, Ivy grapples with eerie offerings, corroded memories, and a burning question: What if there's more to her mother than meets the eye? Told in alternating voices, years after it began, 17-year-old Ivy and her mom Dana's shared story comes down to a reckoning among a daughter, a mother, and the dark forces they never should have messed with.
Readers will be enchanted ... Albert delivers the twisted fairy-tale magic that fans of her Hinterland novels have come to love, along with sharp prose, dark family secrets and a captivating coming-of-age journey for its teenage protagonist. Albert expertly blends mundane high school drama...with black magic ... Presented against the vividly rendered and decidedly realistic backdrops of 1990s Chicago and present-day suburbia, all of these elements come together to create a truly bewitching novel ... Every gripping chapter of Our Crooked Hearts is packed with suspense, spellbinding prose and impossible decisions. Despite their otherworldly proclivities, Albert's dimensional characters feel wholly believable as they grapple with questions of protection, betrayal, friendship and the price of power.
[Albert] employs familiar themes and techniques, but at a new level of mastery, producing a standalone novel so precise and enthralling that the only possible explanation is that Albert herself is a witch ... The story casts its spell at once, ensnaring readers with incantatory language and a wickedly slow burning plot ... Albert’s meticulous craftwork shines ... Albert is able to conjure a deeply resonant emotional reality, as well as a fully realized, wonderfully creepy reality-reality, and for a horror-tinged fantasy, that is especially engrossing. This is a novel that will be devoured as well as savored.