A terrifying tale from a Bram Stoker Award-nominated author who "has consistently created some of the best horror ever set to print" (Cemetery Dance). Foster care is like Russian roulette, says fifteen-year-old Ryan Kettering, who's spent most of his young life in largely abusive homes. Sometimes the hammer clicks and you're fine. Sometimes it's a bullet to the brain. This time it seems the hammer has clicked. Living with the Prestons in a rambling two-story house in Shasta County, the chores are split between Ryan and five other foster kids. Not counting nine-year-old Maddy. Not much is expected of her. She stays in the basement. The other children don't know much about Maddy. But what they do know, they don't like. She's just not right. She speaks in a strange, gravelly adult voice. Maybe Ryan can make a difference. Spend time with her. Get acquainted. He understands what it means to be lonely. That's when he decides to do what no other child in the house dares: Ryan's going down to the basement. From the author of Live Girls and The Loveliest Dead, a recipient of the World Horror Convention's Grand Master Award, this is a chilling story of supernatural terror.