Oct 132022

Publishers Weekly: World Fantasy Award winner Polk (The Midnight Bargain) does what they do best with this genre-bending fantasy noir novella that brings lofty magic to a grimy 1940s city and showcases queer love along the way. Ten years earlier, warlock and private investigator Elena Brandt made a deal with the devil, bargaining away her soul to save the most precious thing in the world to her. Now she has only three days left before her deal is up and she goes to Hell. She should be spending that precious time with Edith Jarosky, the love of her life, or Teddy, her estranged brother. Instead, her best client reveals herself to be a demon and makes Elena an offer she can’t refuse: if Elena can track down a serial killer, she can have her soul back and live out her days in comfort with Edith. Simple enough—except the murders are gruesome human sacrifices used to invoke an ancient, evil, and terribly powerful magic. Though readers will wish they had more time to explore this shadowy world, Polk’s focus on character development makes every interaction matter as they craft a layered exploration of love and power with genuine emotional stakes and a soaring, perfectly bittersweet payoff. It’s another winner.”