“Never Whistle at Night” Review

Around the edge of the cover are various images of plants, flowers and animals (a snake, mouse, frog, snail and butterfly). The title of the book is in the center with the subtitle above it and the names of the editors below it. Full Title: “Never Whistle at Night: An Indigenous Dark Fiction Anthology”
Edited by Shane Hawk and Theodore C. Van Alst Jr.
Published by Vintage, September 2023
384 Pages
Completed January 12, 2024

Many Indigenous people believe that one should never whistle at night. This belief takes many forms: for instance, Native Hawaiians believe it summons the Hukai’po, the spirits of ancient warriors, and Native Mexicans say it calls Lechuza, a witch that can transform into an owl. But what all these legends hold in common is the certainty that whistling at night can cause evil spirits to appear—and even follow you home.

These wholly original and shiver-inducing tales introduce readers to ghosts, curses, hauntings, monstrous creatures, complex family legacies, desperate deeds, and chilling acts of revenge. Introduced and contextualized by bestselling author Stephen Graham Jones, these stories are a celebration of Indigenous peoples’ survival and imagination, and a glorious reveling in all the things an ill-advised whistle might summon.

I always say this but anthologies are a fun way to be introduced to a group of new authors all at once. In this case there were a few author’s I’ve already read but it was good to see more of their work. There were a few stories I didn’t really understand but overall I really enjoyed this anthology. It was a good mix of types of horror stories where sometimes the horror came more from people (colonizers) rather than the supernatural which is to be expected when reading Indigenous stories. This will be another anthology where I look up all the authors and see what else they have written.