Blackwater is the saga of a small town, Perdido, Alabama, and Elinor Dammert, the stranger who arrives there under mysterious circumstances on Easter Sunday, 1919. On the surface, Elinor is gracious, charming, anxious to belong in Perdido, and eager to marry Oscar Caskey, the eldest son of Perdido’s first family. But her beautiful exterior hides a shocking secret. Beneath the waters of the Perdido River, she turns into something terrifying, a creature whispered about in stories that have chilled the residents of Perdido for generations. Some of those who observe her rituals in the river will never be seen again ...
Originally published as a series of six volumes in 1983, Blackwater is the crowning achievement of Michael McDowell, author of the Southern Gothic classics Cold Moon Over Babylon and The Elementals and screenwriter of Beetlejuice and The Nightmare Before Christmas. This first-ever one-volume edition, with a new introduction by Shirley Jackson Award-winning author Nathan Ballingrud, allows a new generation of readers to discover this modern horror classic.
“Seduces and intrigues . . . makes us impatient for the next volume . . . Blackwater looks like Michael McDowell's best yet . . . he is, beyond any trace of a doubt, one of the absolutely best writers of horror.” – Peter Straub
“McDowell must now be regarded as the finest writer of paperback originals in America.” – Stephen King
“Michael McDowell has a flair for the gruesome . . . the nurturing of utmost horror.” – Washington Post