Every Woman Knows This is a very personal, very pointed collection of stories that reflect Laurel Hightower’s experience of the world as a woman. Experiences that are common enough she can comfortably state that commonality in the title (and yes, she is explicit in her belief that this stands for all women, so please step aside with any gender essentialism). These stories hit on everything from dealing with stalkers to the perils of motherhood to always having to clean up after some manchild that never listens to reason and climbs down into an abandoned submarine just to poke around for a bit BECAUSE OF COURSE HE DID, and every one of them hits right in the gut.
I dug the hell out of Laurel Hightower’s previous book, Crossroads. It had that heart I am always looking for, a fair amount of “messeded up,” and an attitude that took zero percent of my guff. So, of course, when I found out that she had a new one coming out, and that it involved Mothman, I was down as a clown in D-town.
Thomas Campbell famously remarked: “To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.” This proves painfully true in Crossroads, the newest release from rising horror superstar Laurel Hightower. Her previous novel, Whispers in the Dark (2018), garnered tons of well-deserved accolades. This time around, Crossroads explores a mother, Chris, mourning the loss of her son, Trey. There is plenty of real-life horror in that itself. Things take a turn toward the supernatural as Chris recalls the concept of a crossroads demon, like the one that Robert Johnson was famously rumored to have sold his soul to in exchange for musical success.