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Shepherd of the Black Sheep Paperback – May 4, 2018
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Small towns can harbor dark secrets…
After the tragic death of her parents, ten-year-old Paige Hardgrave is sent to live with her grandfather on his ranch.
The pain doesn’t stop with the relocation though. Shortly after the move, Paige’s new friend is murdered by an unknown assailant.
With the police unable to find answers, the small town of Middlebury grows fearful and suspicious, itching to take vigilante justice on whoever they can blame.
A slain child, a missing murder weapon, a shattered community, family secrets, and second chances forge a twisted path through Kristopher Triana’s latest dark thriller.
Get lost in this mystery today!
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- Publisher : Blood Bound Books; 1st edition (May 4, 2018)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 187 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1940250315
- ISBN-13 : 978-1940250311
- Item Weight : 8.4 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 0.47 x 8.5 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #146,944 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Poor Tom! He's about to find out that family isn't always where the heart is!
Very good but it felt sloppy in parts and predictable. But I still enjoyed the creep factor of this one.
It opens with two little girls playing in the woods, having whimsical fun, making up stories. Then something terrible happens, and only one little girl makes it home. This tragedy hits on the heels of being recently orphaned and sent to live with her widower grandfather, who’s dealing with his own grief as well as the unexpected challenge of trying to raise a pre-teen.
The last thing he wants is for her to endure more stress and trauma. But the investigation is underway, and she’s the sole witness, being questioned by detectives as well as therapists. There are mugshots and lineups to look at. The other girl’s distraught family is demanding answers, applying social and financial pressures, even making accusations. Then there’s the kids at school, how unkind they can be … and neighbors … people snooping around the house …
I read the whole thing in a single captivated sitting, eyes wide and almost breathless, repeatedly rocked and shocked even when I thought I knew where it was going. The loss and pain, the tension, the frustration, protective love, conflict, helplessness … this book hits strong on every mark.
Now, to be sure, when there are violent bits, they are VIOLENT violent bits, pulling no punches and taking no prisoners, not sparing the sensibilities about raw red horror and gore. And they work just so damn well against the gentler overall tone, making them all the more visceral and terrible.
‘This is an awful bloody book. But then, being a Blood Bound Books publication it couldn’t be anything else because Blood Bound Books specialise in publishing works on matters that are generally exceedingly bloody and awful.
The book might be described as a mystery thriller and, indeed, essentially, that is what it is. But yet, to call it such would be to do it a gross injustice because it is in fact a horror story of the very first degree minus ghouls and ghosts and general mumbo jumbo. Call it then a mystery thriller wrapped in a jet black cobwebbed shroud of decidedly chilling, decidedly disturbing evil woven by Mr Triana’s genius with the pen when it comes to such.
The setting is small town northern New England in winter. The weather is bone numbing cold; as chilling to the flesh as the events that occur are chilling to the soul. The focal point is old timer Ted Hargrave’s ranch which stands on the outskirts of town; a lonesome spot, nearest neighbour a good quarter mile off. A small girl is murdered on ranch land: multiple stab wounds to the guts and Ted’s eleven year old granddaughter, Paige, who is also his ward, escapes the same fate by a whisker fleeing from the killer in terror and screaming for her grandfather who, luckily, happens to be near.
There is an obvious suspect: a drifter, a dope head, recently caught prowling about the ranch and run out of town by the Sheriff. The case looks open and shut but subsequent events quickly prove that it isn’t. More killings occur, triggering spirals of fear and suspicion which culminate in a witch hunt, its victim, perversely, poor Paige. Old Ted, enduring an intensifying waking nightmare that would have broken a lesser man, rises to the occasion and fights for his ward, for his blood grandchild, against all comers. What’s the result of the conflict? That I’ll leave for the reader to find. But, be assured, this being a Blood Bound Book, the good guys don’t come out winners.
“Shepherd of the Black Sheep” by Kristopher Triana: (blood Bound Books) if you’re a fan of horror that isn’t stuffed full of ghosts and ghouls and mumbo jumbo this is one you’ll enjoy. I have to award it five black stars. No choice in the matter at all.
D. A. Barker, (author of “Killing for Christmas,” “What am I” and, in composition, “Suzanne.”)
I received a free copy from the Publisher, but I chose to read this book and all opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased. Thank you, Blood Bound Books!