Bywater Books (2023)

“From the moment Joan, the lethal yet thoughtful war witch, steps down from her armored Range Rover to do battle with minions of the undead, this story blasts through the night like a missile guided not by fuel or electronics but by spells and incantations. Virginia Black has assembled a thrilling cast of emotionally satisfying characters, from Willy, the wise dog who sneezes when vampires are near to the sensual Leigh Phan, Joan’s lover who needs more than just rescue. Be prepared to hold your breath!” —Jewelle Gomez, author of The Gilda Stories


Like her father before her, Joan Matthews is a witch. For generations, their family of binder witches has protected Calvert, Oregon from vampires by strengthening the land with spellcraft. Pushing back against tradition, Joan defied her father and left town to become a war witch, one who fights the monsters hand-to-hand. But when her father dies, Joan returns to find her hometown assailed by a vampire lord’s endless attacks—and the answers lie with the one woman who chose a rival over Joan.

Leigh Phan once believed her heart was safe and her future was set. When Joan left town, Leigh’s choices led to ruin and unintended consequences. Now Leigh harbors a dark secret forcing her to live a moment-to-moment existence. Her only hope of survival lies in trusting the war witch who left her behind.

Now it’s up to Joan to fight for a town she abandoned, while Leigh faces a destiny she never imagined was possible. With Calvert on the brink of total destruction, Joan and Leigh join forces and face inconvenient truths in order to save their town—and each other.

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