Andrew Pyper’s The Residence is a gripping tale about a malevolent force in the White House

The Residence by Andrew Pyper. Image Courtesy Simon & Schuster, Inc
The Residence by Andrew Pyper. Image Courtesy Simon & Schuster, Inc /

Andrew Pyper’s The Residence is an incredible novel that includes stunning historical truth mixed with gripping horror fiction. It’s a must-read for 2020.

With every novel Skybound Books releases, the bar for quality is raised. In his latest novel, Andrew Pyper manages to jump to the top of the historical fiction genre with a story about a demon in the White House. The Residence is a novel that explores the lives of Franklin and Jane Pierce after the passing of their youngest son, Bennie.

Franklin Pierce was the 14th president of the United States, serving from 1853 to 1857. Pierce himself is a very unremarkable president. In fact, if readers were to Google this president, the results might include lists of the most-forgettable presidents.

Luckily, nothing about this novel comes across as unremarkable or forgettable. If anything, Pyper paints a picture of an extraordinary story based on the truth. It’s intriguing to learn that seances and a haunting of epic proportions took place in the White House.

As readers begin the book, they will first be hit by an overwhelming feeling of grief. Jane and Franklin lost so much before ever setting foot in the White House. They had three sons, all of whom died. Their first son died only three days after he was born, their second died of typhus, and their youngest son, Bennie, died just weeks before Franklin was sworn into the presidency in a very bizarre train accident. Parents in particular might have a rough time reading through what happened to this couple.

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What makes this novel stand out from the rest is that it hits readers in different ways and leaves with even more questions. Of course, when reading a horror novel, readers want to be scared and left with a presence that makes them continuously look over their shoulder; that’s just the fun of the genre. The Residence will certainly do that.

This book, however, also brings a very human element to horror. Since the story of the Pierce couple at the core is true, it’s hard to just simply shrug the story away. They did lose three children, Jane did try and contact her deceased son, they did have a hard marriage and they didn’t support each other in a way that left them feeling loved during this portion of their lives.

In a total fiction horror work, it’s easy to laugh away jump scares, and hope for certain characters to get comeuppance and simply move on to the next story. The Residence, while it does have those classic horror elements, will leave you self-reflecting. Was Jane or Franklin crazy, or were their reactions on base with everything they had been through? Would readers have reacted any differently after losing all their children?

Andrew Pyper did an incredible job of bringing demons and chaos into the White House, as well as showing the very human story of a couple in mental turmoil. This book is released on September 1, just weeks away from the presidential election in the U.S., and as Halloween season is starting to begin. It’s the perfect season for the book, so make sure you pick up this incredible work!

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Have you gotten the chance to read The Residence, or are you excited to pick it up? Tweet me your thoughts and feelings @Mamadeadhead on Twitter!