A cynical twentysomething must confront her unconventional family’s dark secrets in this fiery, irreverent horror novel from the author of Such Sharp Teeth and Cackle.

Death, body horror.

Nobody has a “normal” family, but Vesper Wright’s is truly…something else. Vesper left home at eighteen and never looked back—mostly because she was told that leaving the staunchly religious community she grew up in meant she couldn’t return. But then an envelope arrives on her doorstep.

Inside is an invitation to the wedding of Vesper’s beloved cousin Rosie. It’s to be hosted at the family farm. Have they made an exception to the rule? It wouldn’t be the first time Vesper’s been given special treatment. Is the invite a sweet gesture? An olive branch? A trap? Doesn’t matter. Something inside her insists she go to the wedding. Even if it means returning to the toxic environment she escaped. Even if it means reuniting with her mother, Constance, a former horror film star and forever ice queen.

When Vesper’s homecoming exhumes a terrifying secret, she’s forced to reckon with her family’s beliefs and her own crisis of faith in this deliciously sinister novel that explores the way family ties can bind us as we struggle to find our place in the world.

Don't just take our word for it...

“Think The Princess Diaries meets Dante’s Inferno. That’s Black Sheep. Only Rachel Harrison could write something with such fiery playfulness and such stunning acerbic wit. Undoubtedly the most enjoyable and compelling horror novel you’ll read this year.”
– Eric LaRocca, author of Things Have Gotten Worse Since We Last Spoke

“No other contemporary author harnesses the humanity found in horror quite like Rachel Harrison. With Black Sheep, she warms your heart, then breaks it, then rips it out.”
– Clay McLeod Chapman, author of Ghost Eaters

“Anyone who read Such Sharp Teeth knows that Harrison can absolutely nail thorny family dynamics and blend them with visceral horror, but with Black Sheep, there’s something new going on, proving yet again that Harrison is one of the most versatile authors in the genre.”
– Paste Magazine

Taste the very first page

As I stood singing the birthday song for the fifth time that evening, I realized I was wrong for not believing in hell. Hell was the birthday song. Hell was Shortee’s. Hell was the green polo shirt, the khakis, the whole stupid fucking uniform. Hell was my life. 

“And the happy Shortee’s happy birthday to you, hey!” I clapped, and I thought, This must be it. This must be the summit of loathing. I imagined a climber atop Mount Everest, only bitter instead of victorious, grappling with their dissatisfaction with the view. 

Kerri presented the chocolate lava cake to the kid, and when he blew out the candle, we all applauded and whooped and I longed to feel what I typically felt, which was numb, instead of what I felt in that moment, which was miserable. 

The kid’s parents kissed his forehead, ruffled his hair. His sister asked meekly if she could try a bite. I observed them as I distributed extra spoons and napkins, and for the first time in a long time I thought about my family. 

For the first time in a long time I missed them. 

Or, if I’m being honest, which I suppose I should be, it was the first time in a long time that I admitted to myself I missed them, and how much. In that moment, I surrendered to the tidal pull of family. Of blood.