Publication Date: April 18, 2023
In 1988, Sloan Hadfield’s brother Ridge went fishing with their father and never came home. Their father, a good-natured Vietnam veteran prone to violent outbursts, was arrested and charged with murder. Ridge’s body was never recovered, and Sloan’s mother— a brilliant ornithologist— slowly descended into madness, insisting her son was still alive.
Now twenty years later, Sloan’s life is unraveling. In the middle of a bitter divorce, she’s forced to return to her rural Texas hometown when her mother is discharged from a mental health facility.
Overwhelmed by memories and unanswered questions, Sloan returns to the last place her brother was seen all those years ago: Crow’s Nest Creek. There, she is shocked to hear a crow murmuring the same syllable over and over: Ridge, Ridge, Ridge.
When the body of another boy is found, Sloan begins to question what really happened to her brother all those years ago. What she discovers will shock her small community and turn her family upside down.
A family shattered by the loss of a young boy and subsequent murder conviction of the father. That’s what Sloan sees every day in the mirror. After a dozen years of distance, she returns to her hometown of Mallowater, Texas.
From the opening paragraph of A River of Crows, author Shanessa Gluhm sets the stage for a riveting story of suspense. With chapters alternating between past and present, the author tells the story of the Hadfield family and its eventual implosion.
One of the unique characteristics of the town is the sheer number of crows that call Crow’s Nest Creek home. That is where Sloan’s brother was last seen, allegedly killed at the hands of his father, although no body was ever found.
Sloan’s return, prompted by her mother leaving the psychiatric facility, is fraught with memories and confrontations. Her mother claims Ridge is alive with the crows, but is it just a delusion?
With her father set to be released, Sloan must dig into the past for the answers that have been buried for too long, relying on both old and new acquaintances for help.
With strong characters and unexpected plot twists, A River of Crows easily tops the list of best stories of 2023.
Shanessa Gluhm works as a librarian at an elementary school in New Mexico where she lives with her husband and children. It was during her own elementary days when a teacher encouraged Shanessa to share a story she wrote called, “Piggy the Kid” with the class. They asked for a sequel and she hasn’t stopped writing since.
Her debut novel, Enemies of Doves was an IAN Book of the Year Finalist in the category of first novel, an NIEA Finalist for cross-genre fiction, and first place winner in the Chanticleer Clue Awards for mystery, suspense, and thriller fiction.
When Shanessa is not writing she enjoys bird-watching, reading, and watching true crime documentaries. Shanessa loves to hear from her readers and the best way to connect is via e-mail or her Facebook page.
04/18 Review @ Archaeolibrarian – I Dig Good Books!
04/18 Review @ Paws. Read. Repeat
04/19 Review @ fundinmental
04/19 Review @ Novels Alive
04/20 Review @ Reading is my Superpower
04/20 Review @ Shangread-La
04/21 Review @ Book Reviews From an Avid Reader
04/22 Review @ Guatemala Paula Loves to Read
04/23 Review @ From the TBR Pile
04/24 Review @ Lynchburg Mama
04/25 Review @ elaine_sapp65
04/26 Review @ mokwip8991
04/27 Review @ Blogging with A
04/27 Review @ Celticladys Reviews
04/28 Review @ Melissa As Blog