Night, Neon: Tales of Mystery and Suspense

by Joyce Carol Oates

Available June 2021
Hardcover, $25.95
Purchase this title through a local bookstore using IndieBound

From literary icon Joyce Carol Oates comes a brand new collection of haunting and, at times, darkly humorous mystery & suspense stories. These are tales of psyches pushed to their limits by the expectations of everyday life―from a woman who gets lost on her drive home to her plush suburban home and ends up breaking into a stranger’s house, to a first-person account of a cloned 1940s magazine pinup girl being sold at auction and embodying America’s ideals of beauty and womanhood.

Taken as a whole, the collection forms a poignant tapestry of regular people searching for their place in a social hierarchy, often with devastating and disastrous results. Rendered with stylish, fresh writing from an author who continues to push the envelope, the stories deftly weave in and out of a stream-of-consciousness to reflect the ways we process traumatic experiences and impart that uncertainty and uneasiness to the reader.

Originally appearing in publications as disparate as Harper’s, Vice, and Conjunctions, the stories comprising Night, Neon showcase Oates’ mastery of the suspense story―and her relentless use of the form to conduct unapologetically honest explorations of American identity.

Oates’ spookiness is visceral, psychologically involving, and socially astute.

Booklist, on Night Gaunts

Few writers better illuminate the mind’s most disturbing corners.

Seattle Times

Oates’s brand of horror has never required the invocation of other worlds: This world is terrible enough for her. Everything she writes, in whatever genre, has an air of dread, because she deals in vulnerabilities and inevitabilities, in the desperate needs that drive people . . . to their fates. A sense of helplessness is the essence of horror, and Oates conveys that feeling as well as any writer around.

New York Times Book Review, on The Doll-Master and Other Tales of Terror

Joyce Carol Oates is the author of more than seventy books, including novels, short story collections, poetry volumes, plays, essays, and criticism, including the national bestsellers We Were the Mulvaneys and Blonde. Among her many honors are the PEN/Malamud Award for Excellence in Short Fiction and the National Book Award. Oates is the Roger S. Berlind Distinguished Professor of the Humanities at Princeton University, and has been a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters since 1978.