Woodworm (Hardcover)

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Woodworm By Layla Martinez, Sophie Hughes (Translator), Annie McDermott (Translator) Cover Image
By Layla Martinez, Sophie Hughes (Translator), Annie McDermott (Translator)
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Staff Reviews

A novella about a hungry haunted house filled with vermin and ghosts and ghoulish saints, plus the two women left to live with a righteous anger calcifying their hopes and dreams into a twisted act of revenge. The pages left cobwebs on my fingertips. 

— From Sarah C.

A house haunted by ghosts, saints, and angels that seem to be in an endless cycle of unrest and women who seek to avenge their tainted name, all while fraught with intergenerational trauma that infests their wooden walls. A house with enraged women who want to heal their trauma wounds by any means necessary. A house that breathes and lives. 

— From Javi

Read this if you want to feel really weird. It's creepy, class-conscious, house horror (should be a genre) that spans generations of women. The translation is clever, sparse, and eerie. For fans of Samantha Schweblin and Ottessa Moshfegh at her strangest (esp. Eileen and McGlue), this little book is not to be missed.

— From Alyson

May 2024 Indie Next List

“MartĂ­nez bends a haunting to her will. Woodworm is an offbeat tale about intergenerational trauma, classism, and the measures we take to grasp at anything resembling justice. I could taste its righteous malevolence; I savoured every word.”
— Lauren Abesames, Wind City Books, Casper, WY


The house breathes. The house contains bodies and secrets. The house is visited by ghosts, by angels that line the roof like insects, and by saints that burn the bedsheets with their haloes. It was built by a smalltime hustler as a means of controlling his wife, and even after so many years, their daughter and her granddaughter can't leave. They may be witches or they may just be angry, but when the mysterious disappearance of a young boy draws unwanted attention, the two isolated women, already subjects of public scorn, combine forces with the spirits that haunt them in pursuit of something that resembles justice.

In this lush translation by Sophie Hughes and Annie McDermott, Layla Martinez's eerie debut novel is class-conscious horror that drags generations of monsters into the sun. Described by Mariana Enriquez as "a house of women and shadows, built from poetry and revenge, " this vision of a broken family in our unjust world places power in the hands of the eccentric, the radical, and the desperate.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781949641592
ISBN-10: 1949641597
Publisher: Two Lines Press
Publication Date: May 14th, 2024
Pages: 144
Language: English