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White Horse by Erika T. Wurth

White Horse


We love supporting debut authors. Congrats, Erika T. Wurth, on your first book!

by Erika T. Wurth
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Quick take

This no-nonsense, heavy-metal-obsessed Indigenous woman is determined to confront family ghosts even if it kills her.

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Supernatural


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_FamilyDrama

    Family drama

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Rugged


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Snarky



Some people are haunted in more ways than one.

Heavy metal, ripped jeans, Stephen King novels, and the occasional beer at the White Horse have defined urban Indian Kari James’s life so far. But when her cousin Debby finds an old family bracelet that once belonged to Kari’s mother, it inadvertently calls up both her mother’s ghost and a monstrous entity, and her willful ignorance about her past is no longer sustainable . . .

Haunted by visions of her mother and hunted by this mysterious creature, Kari must search for what happened to her mother all those years ago. Her father, permanently disabled from a car crash, can’t help her. Her Auntie Squeaker seems to know something but isn’t eager to give it all up at once. Debby’s anxious to help, but her controlling husband keeps getting in the way. Kari’s journey toward a truth long denied by both her family and law enforcement forces her to confront her dysfunctional relationships, thoughts about a friend she lost in childhood, and her desire for the one thing she’s always wanted but could never have.

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Content warning

This book contains mentions of child abuse.

Why I love it

White Horse is the kind of book that your cousin who wears a leather jacket year-round and brings a flask to the family reunion might write. In other words, it is very very cool and will give you just the right amount of heebiejeebies. Smell the pages—do you catch that whiff of whisky stains and old cigarettes?

At the center of this novel is Kari James, an urban Indian woman who has been mainlining Stephen King and heavy metal for a few decades and most nights can be found nursing a beer at the watering hole that gives this novel its name. Then one day Kari’s cousin bequeaths to her a family heirloom, and suddenly all manner of ghosts—past, present, and future—begin making their presence known. This turn of events sends Kari on a hunt for answers—most importantly of all, why her mother disappeared when she was just a child.

Erika T. Wurth has written a book that is every bit as fierce and complex as the monsters that populate your imagination. More, she has shown the ways that wounds personal, familial, and societal fester and grow when hidden. Perhaps the scariest game in town is our own history. But books like White Horse might just be the tool we need to properly confront and ward off unwelcome spirits.

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