The Residence

In this terrifying ghost story based on true events, the President’s late son haunts the White House, threatening all who live in it—and the divided America beyond its walls.

The year is 1853. President-elect Franklin Pierce is traveling with his family to Washington, DC, when tragedy strikes. In an instant, their train runs off the rails, violently flinging passengers about the cabin. When the great iron machine finally comes to rest, the only casualty is the Pierces’ son, Bennie. The loss sends First Lady Jane Pierce into mourning, and casts Franklin’s presidency under a pall of sorrow and grief.

As the Pierces move into the White House, they are soon plagued by events both bizarre and disturbing. Strange sounds seem to come from the walls and ceiling, ghostly voices echo out of time itself, and visions of spirits crushed under the weight of American history pass through empty hallways. But when Jane orchestrates a séance with the infamous Fox Sisters—the most noted Spiritualists of the day—the barrier between this world and the next is torn asunder. Something horrific comes through and takes up residence alongside Franklin and Jane in the very walls of the mansion itself.

Only by overcoming their grief and confronting their darkest secrets can Jane and Franklin hope to rid themselves—and America—of the entity that seeks to make the White House its permanent home.


“Cross White House history with The Shining and you’ve got Pyper’s occult-filled novel…There’s plenty of satisfying horror to be had, though The Residence also presents an interesting love story and nicely weaves in American’s struggles with war and slavery.” USA TODAY

“A fascinating blend of truth and speculation…readers are likely to feel a timely shock to their senses.” MINNEAPOLIS STAR TRIBUNE

“Fascinating…This eerie ghost story is sure to please horror fans.” PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

“Legitimately creepy…Recommended for fans of historical fiction with a bite.” BOOKLIST

“Pyper’s horrors are well-constructed; they find ready anchors in the historical details he provides, and strong engines in the prose Pyper wields. Beautiful prose is the calling card of any Pyper novel, and it is on full display here… In The Residence, Pyper gives us not only an effective and engaging historical horror novel; but a fable that does us the compliment of assigning some portion of the blame for the darker parts of American history to forces beyond our control.” Christopher Buehlman, TOR.COM

“Pyper’s ability to make one question truths, what they witness, and even their own existence, is horror in the tradition of Henry James’s Turn of the Screw and Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House.” GLOBE AND MAIL

“I was not prepared for the nonstop terror that Andrew Pyper has penned, making for one of the most haunting and disturbing reads that I have experienced in quite some time.” BOOKREPORTER

“The best writing comes out in Pyper’s tender and insightful portrait of Franklin and Jane’s marriage, which is built on genuine affection but strained almost to the breaking point. Let’s hope these parts are well-cast if The Residence is adapted for the screen – and with its deep-seated horror and irresistible historical hook, it almost certainly will be.” WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

“A supernatural thriller steeped in the melancholic and macabre, the kind of ghost story that will keep you up at night. A vivid nightmare of a book.”
— IAIN REID, bestselling author of I’m Thinking of Ending Things and Foe

“Andrew Pyper’s work never fails to amaze and The Residence is no exception. He is the rare writer who always manages to create a fun, scary page-turner that is also deeply literate and achingly human.”
— JEFF LEMIRE, New York Times bestselling author of Descender and Essex County

“The only thing more bewitching than a ghost in the White House is putting its story in the hands of Andrew Pyper. Herein lies the coupling of the uncanny with the all-too-real, and the glow from such a pairing lights the way to a chilling, profound reading.”
JOSH MALERMAN, New York Times bestselling author of Bird Box and Malorie

“Andrew Pyper shows us the White House as we’ve never seen it before. Haunted. Possessed. And occupied by a demon. The Residence shows the depths of sadness and madness possible through grief. A Gothic horror story that is rich with emotional complexity and as beautiful as it is terrifying.”
— ALMA KATSU, author of The Deep and The Hunger