Gideon by Alex Gordon

In this impressive dark fantasy debut, witches are anything but cardboard embodiments of good and evil. They are modern, yet plagued by a 200-year-old curse; they are sometimes untrained and unaware, but still have incredible power flowing in their veins. Lauren Reardon thought she was a perfectly normal person, until her father’s death revealed her family connection to the witches from the tiny town of Gideon, Ill., who are tasked with keeping demons from entering this world. After John Reardon’s death, uncanny and frightening events start Lauren on a trip to find her roots, along with the power to combat an evil spirit that has terrorized Gideon since 1836. Crisp and shiveringly disturbing prose, a solid plot, and well-developed characters all make for a deeply satisfying read. — Publishers Weekly