Drop Shadow

The Creepening of Dogwood House

By Eden Royce


The Walter Award Honor–winning author of Root Magic returns with a terrifying story in the Southern Gothic tradition, inspired by the hoodoo practice of hair burning.

At night, Roddie still dreams of sitting at his mother’s feet while she braids his Afro down. But that’s a memory from before. Before his mom died in a tragic accident. Before he was taken in by an aunt he barely knows. Before his aunt brought him to Dogwood House, the creepiest place Roddie has ever seen. It was his family’s home for over a hundred years. Now the house—abandoned and rotting, draped in Spanish moss that reminds him too much of hair—is his home too.

Aunt Angie has returned to South Carolina to take care of Roddie and reconnect with their family’s hoodoo roots. Roddie, however, can’t help but feel lost. His mom had never told him anything about hoodoo, Dogwood House, or their family. And as they set about fixing the house up, Roddie discovers that there is even more his mother never said. Like why she left home when she was seventeen, never to return. Or why she insisted Aunt Angie always wear her hair in locs. Or what she knew of the strange secrets hidden deep within Dogwood House—secrets that have awoken again, and are reaching out to Roddie…

Eden Royce

Eden Royce is a writer from Charleston, SC, now living in the garden of England. She is a Shirley Jackson Award finalist for her short fiction for adults. Her debut novel, Root Magic, was a Walter Dean Myers Award Honoree, an ALA Notable Children’s Book, a Mythopoeic Fantasy Award winner, and a Nebula Award Finalist for outstanding children’s literature. Find her online at edenroyce.com.

On sale July 30, 2024

Published by Walden Pond Press an Imprint of HarperCollins Publishers