ANOKA: A COLLECTION OF INDIGENOUS HORROR
October 26, 2020
Welcome to Anoka, Minnesota, a small city just outside of the Twin Cities dubbed “The Halloween Capital of the World” since 1937. Here before you lie several tales involving bone collectors, pagan witches, werewolves, skeletal bison, and cloned children. It is up to you to decipher between fact and fiction as the author has woven historical facts into his narratives. With his debut horror collection, Cheyenne and Arapaho author Shane Hawk explores themes of family, grief, loneliness, and identity through the lens of Indigenous life.
After sending my maternal grandma early drafts of these horror stories, she texted me something that became my first official blurb as an author: Please find another hobby. This is too horrible for words. How can you imagine someone enjoying this?
Note for booksellers/libraries: Anoka is available through Ingram's catalog.
"The stories in Anoka are scary and funny and gruesome and fantastic but feel true. The short collection is filled with big ideas. The writing is sharp throughout. Pay attention to Cheyenne Arapaho author Shane Hawk, he's going to write great, horrible things."
—Tommy Orange, author of There There
"The voice here is quiet, breathy, big-brass-ballsy, befogged, benighted, believable. The stories stick and poke like an infected tattoo you got done in your friend's basement. They look cool and terrible, hurt like hell and are remembered with little shudders and slit-eyed grins. Get this book. Stick it in your pocket, carry it around, and read it when you need a jolt. It'll get you where you need to be."
—Theodore C. Van Alst, Jr., author of Sacred Smokes and Sacred City
"While I don't read much horror, the vibrancy of these stories immediately impressed me. The voice in these six stories is urgent, insistent, and unrelenting, and I couldn't put the book down until I'd finished each one."
—David Heska Wanbli Weiden, author of Winter Counts
"Anoka is a place of many meanings, and here many meetings, as horrors creep from unexpected shadows. The stories coil around us, feeding unease. Personal standouts were 'Imitate,' a tale that sinks into doppelgängers, identity, and uncertainty, and 'Transfigured.'"
—Hailey Piper, author of Queen of Teeth
Reviews are important to writers. They "keep the lights on." But hey, maybe we horror writers want it dark, yeah? Either way, I'm beyond appreciative of everyone who's reviewed Anoka whether good or bad. Reviews are for readers—they let others who think like you decide whether they'd like to take the digital dive into an ebook or physical dive into a paperback. I've also loved seeing the artwork created on behalf of Anoka. It's been so great to see. Thank you to everyone who has read this little book and those who've reviewed.