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3.18  ·  Rating Details  ·  116 Ratings  ·  29 Reviews
A spellbinding campus. A new family of friends. A semester of death.

High school senior Cody's prayers are answered when he's recruited on scholarship to the college of his dreams: a stunning and prestigious school tucked high in the Tennessee hills.

But the dream turns living nightmare when his classmates start to die off mysteriously. Is it Cody's imagination, or are his f
Kindle Edition, First Edition, 304 pages
Published November 27th 2012 by Tigerfish
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Jul 21, 2013 Kimberly rated it liked it
I knew when I first started reading this book, it would be an interesting read. The plot held me out through the end of the book. The only character I could relate to was Cody. I was continuously confused about who the other characters in the book were. On a positive note, I love a good thriller and I think S'wanee was exactly that. I also loved that I didn't know who was doing the killing to the very end. It took me by surprise, and I like that the author chose to go in that direction. Some par ...more
Feb 19, 2013 Kristine rated it it was amazing
I stumbled upon this book from my group in goodreads. Winston was looking for reviews for this self published masterpiece. I gladly took him up on his offer since the synopsis really peaked my interest. I began reading and it kept me up hours later then I usually stay up for, rough morning the next day did not stop me from reading for hours on end until I had finally devoured the book entirely. The fact that I had such a hard time putting this book down, and the fact that I was completely intere ...more
Kudos to Don Winston on a job well done!

When something seems too good to be true, trust your gut instinct and away...far away!

I enjoy trying to figure out the plot twists and was pleasantly surprised.
Terry Bonner
Jul 30, 2014 Terry Bonner rated it it was ok
Being an alumnus of both the Academy and the University, I was anxious to read Winston's book.

It wasn't difficult. The prose was simple and flowing, the characters straightforward, the dialogue uncomplicated. I was finished within an hour.

I'm never going to have that hour back now.

One would think that a pretentious old sandstone campus modelled after Oxford, where students still wear academic gowns and ties to classes and attend convocations in the Gothic chapel at the very heart of the academic
Cody Marko lived with his mother Marcie in a small apartment. It had been just the two of them forever – Cody didn’t know his father, but his mother more than compensated for his absence. They were very close, and now that Cody was seventeen and working, he admired his mother’s fortitude, and looked out for her. He wished she would stop smoking, and that she would meet a man who could be a permanent presence in her life. She worked at Macy’s department store, while he worked in IT at the local A ...more
Jun 25, 2014 Abby rated it liked it
I was given this book to read and review

I think this book was really good and the ending was incredible. My only negative comments on the book is that the beginning was way too long. I didn't like how it took about 30 percent of the book up with just him and his mom in their everyday Jersey life. I think they should have just gotten right into life at S'wannee. Another thing was that some parts were a bit confusing to understand but its ok because it is all explained in the end.

Shannon Thurman
Aug 02, 2013 Shannon Thurman rated it liked it
Shelves: thriller, tennessee
Since the setting is Sewanee, I figured the local color would be fun, plus the thrill of a read likened to "Rosemary's Baby." Well, sorta.

The story is interesting, and the main character is likeable and we want him to succeed and figure out the odd happenings at S'wanee. For sure, the mystery itself, when revealed, is pretty shocking and I suppose worth the price of the book. However, the dialogue nearly killed me. When every character says "Dude" to begin a conversation,your eyes begin to roll
Debbie Krenzer
Jul 02, 2013 Debbie Krenzer rated it really liked it
I received this book free in exchange for a review.

Life as a college freshman can be scary and strange. The same is true for Cody. A senior in high school debating whether to go to Rutgers or a relatively unheard of college named "S'wanee". After a mix up at S'wanee, Cody goes to Rutgers, but only for one day. He is accepted by S'wanee. That's where the mystery begins.

This book was very well written and held my attention throughout. Some of the events are a little confusing, but they are all sor
Apr 30, 2013 Pat rated it it was amazing
If you like psychological thrillers this is certainly ONE NOT TO MISS.Once started you are well and truly hooked.This spinechiller will scare you, have you holding on to the edge of your seat and keep you wake but you wont want to put it down so be prepared for a late night.Cody registers for S'wanee and so it all begins.You will never be sure whats real or not- nothing is what it seems.
I wont say anymore to spoil your read.Go buy it,it comes highly recommended.
Sep 28, 2013 Holly rated it it was amazing
This book is truly incredible. The protagonist, Cody, came to life, which the mark of excellent writing. I thought I had the story totally figured out, bit I continued reading because I still very much enjoyed the story. As I read the last few pages, I realized I had figured out a minuscule part.

"S'wannee" is well written, intriguing and disturbing in the best way. I am (im)patiently awaiting Don Winston's next novel, which is due out in November!
Jerry Dougherty
Jul 24, 2013 Jerry Dougherty added it
Shelves: review
This is not the typical type of book I read but I found it to be a great read I was able to relate to the character in different ways one being from Jersey and having lived in tennessee and also because I moved around a lot growing up. The plot kept me wanting more the plot twists were good too. I did find certain areas of the book a little jump aroundish and a little confusing but all togethor I really enjoyed the book. Thanks for the chance to read.
Dec 06, 2012 Jackmaz rated it it was amazing
Unsettling in the best way. I love when I bite into a book expecting one thing based on the setup and it turns into something completely different. The author brought me along on the main character's journey and I started to accept the things that he was accepting, when we definitely shouldn't have! The tension builds and builds - just like it should in a great thriller.
David Mullen
Jun 18, 2013 David Mullen rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Mystery and Southern Lit fans
Recommended to David by: Amazon
I enjoyed the indy feel of this book. While it ended rather abruptly, until that point I felt the writing was very believable. Being from the area, Swannee is just about an hour from Nashville, I can attest to the authenticity of the settings and locale. All in all a fun read, especially if you live in the SE U.S.
Donna Cavanagh
Apr 14, 2013 Donna Cavanagh rated it it was amazing
This book will make you glad you are not starting as a freshman at a new college far from home. The term paranoid thriller truly fits. Great story; great characters and great twists and turns. Highly recommend this book!
Patricia Ibarra
Dec 27, 2014 Patricia Ibarra rated it it was ok
Cody Marko is a high school graduate who was invited to attend a small prestigious college called S'wanee. He cannot believe his luck because he had already accepted that his economic situation would not allow him to attend a good school. He had never heard about it but he investigates and soon falls in love with it. His mother finally accepts to let him go, especially when he is given full scholarship. he is very excited upon his arrival, but soon students start dying. He decides to find out wh ...more
Mar 08, 2014 James rated it did not like it
Shelves: mystery-thriller
I certainly cannot say that I enjoyed reading this book. The plot is designed to entrap, not entertain. There was too much useless information early in the book and far too little at the end. Cody's mother's character was inconsistently developed and inadequately explained. If I had the time back I spent reading this book, I'd spend it reading something worthwhile. I borrowed the book through Kindle Prime and am glad I didn't buy it. I'm looking forward to returning it and trying to forget about ...more
Sarah Tilsley
Aug 18, 2013 Sarah Tilsley rated it it was ok
Shelves: thriller, 2013, august
It was OK, what more can I say? I found that I read the book to some extent because I wanted to know what was going on, but mainly because I don't like abandoning books. I borrowed this from the kindle lending library as part of my prime membership and I'm glad that I didn't pay for it otherwise I would have been more disappointed than I am with it.

I didn't like the ending, I expected to have answered to my questions, but I felt I still had questions at the end of the book and I prefer to end th
Jul 19, 2013 Elaine rated it did not like it
Couldn't even finish it it was bad.
I have this book longer than most but chapter after chapter of information that was just boring, not needed and useless I put the book down.
The writing style was patchy it was good at one moment then went all shakey.
The build up to the story like I said was just too much I got fed up of waiting for something to happen, I mean there's building an atmosphere then there's this book which killed it.
The character of Cody was written in a way that it seemed like the
Feb 04, 2014 Margaret rated it really liked it
Well written and creepy. The reviews comparing this to Ira Levin are spot on. I liked the story, and it stayed with me, even when I didn't want it to.
Damon Rogers
May 09, 2014 Damon Rogers rated it did not like it
Awful! I kept reading because I did enjoy reminiscing about the buildings and grounds!
Apr 03, 2013 Kelly rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no one, unless they are a University of The South grad and want something to mock
Shelves: utter-crap
Pathetic, self-published tripe. More disturbing than the stilted writing is the authors over-the-top self-promotion by using copyrighted images from The University and slapping his quotes and annoying title on them.

You sir, are no gentleman, and certainly not a graduate of SEwanee as you are completely lacking in the integrity found in those who know that the Honor Code stretched far beyond the gates on the mountain.
I am not sure which shelves to put this book on. It could be so many different shelves.

I felt the author spent a lot of time building the suspense. He did a great job there. I thought the ending was a little flat. It almost seemed like he had a deadline and could not think of anything else to write.

I would probably recommend this book to other people
Jan 05, 2013 Emily rated it liked it
Quick easy read. Interesting storyline, but I felt he spent too much time building the scenery and not enough on the play. I would have liked to see more of the plot opened up, especially leading up to and immediately after the climax. Once I got a sense of where it was going, I was enthused and anticipatory. But the swift wrap-up left me wanting.
Nina Karaagac


poor opp
ennui to
lollipops to the beach and then I have to get to the
Karl Afrikian
Nov 26, 2013 Karl Afrikian rated it it was ok
The book is ok. It's not that exciting. I'm a Sewanee student and it was really inaccurate at times yet gives a relatively interesting view on all of the Sewanee traditions. So. Eh.
Claudette Gabbs
May 27, 2013 Claudette Gabbs rated it liked it
a quick review on S'wanee thriller: good plot, likeable characters, smooth flowing storyline. then you reach the climax & let down. ugh!
Sue Plant
Apr 17, 2013 Sue Plant rated it it was ok
lost the plot at the end....up till then it was sort of ok...but as a freebie book i am glad i gave it a go...
May 27, 2013 Diane rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery
Paranoid thrillers are not my favorite books to read.
Deborah Sastroredjo
Sep 04, 2013 Deborah Sastroredjo rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2013
review coming soon
Liz rated it liked it
Jun 20, 2016
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topics  posts  views  last activity   
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Don Winston grew up in Nashville and graduated from Princeton University. After a stint at Ralph Lauren headquarters in New York, he moved to Los Angeles to work in entertainment. "S'WANEE: A PARANOID THRILLER" was his debut novel. His second novel—"THE UNION CLUB: A SUBVERSIVE THRILLER"—was published in April 2014. His new thriller—"THE GRISTMILL PLAYHOUSE: A NIGHTMARE IN THREE ACTS"—was released ...more
More about Don Winston...

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