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(Jack Harper Trilogy #1)

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  575 ratings  ·  144 reviews
From the age of seven, Jack Harper is raised by the leader of a mystical cult, Cyrus Harper. Through Cyrus, Jack receives a full education in all usual subjects―economics, literature, mathematics, history―as well as one unique skill useful to a person in Cyrus's position: assassination. With the help of Roland James, a man incapable of dying, Cyrus hones Jack into the perf ...more
Published by Rare Bird Books (first published May 12th 2013)
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  • Pivot by L.C. Barlow
    Release date: Oct 15, 2019
    Enter for a chance to win one of 50 copies of PIVOT by L.C. Barlow.

    "Beyond good and evil, Pivot juggles archetypes until you’re not sure w

    Format: Print book

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    Availability: 50 copies available, 2830 people requesting

    Giveaway dates: Oct 21 - Nov 20, 2019

    Countries available: U.S.

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    Juliana This book got picked up by a new publisher and she names the other two books (Perish, Peak) of the trilogy on her website (…moreThis book got picked up by a new publisher and she names the other two books (Perish, Peak) of the trilogy on her website ( The new printing of Pivot is to be published on the 15th of this month, but I don't know when the other ones are coming out.(less)
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    Community Reviews

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    Average rating 3.67  · 
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     ·  575 ratings  ·  144 reviews

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    Gregor Xane
    Feb 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: 2014
    Here's a list of five (5) things about this book that'll turn some folks off:

    1) It's written in first person. (I'm not sure why this is such a turn-off for a lot of folks, but it is.)
    2) The action flips back and forth in time throughout the narrative.
    3) The narrator/protagonist commits numerous horrendous acts.
    4) This book is filled with intimate accounts of extreme violence (some involving animals and children).
    5) You will find some typos in this book. (More
    Angel Gelique
    Nov 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Pandora's box photo: Pandora's Box PandorasBox.jpg

    If there's beauty to be found in horror, you'll find it here in this amazing book. The story is beautifully told from the point of view of the main character, Jack. As a young child, Jack is taken to live with the mysterious Cyrus, a cult leader who possesses certain powers. Early on, Jack is taught how to kill. Jack becomes a murderer, a thief and a drug abuser. Yet, there's much more to Jack as well...something unique and special. Readers get the treat of experiencing life as Jack does, unde
    Athena Shardbearer
    Soon! lol.

    Buddy read with my girl Shandra 4/27


    Actual ratings 4.5 stars

    For the past few weeks, I've been pushing a buddy, Hi Shandra *waves*, to read this with me in a buddy read. I told her, "I heard it twisted....I've heard it gory....I heard it really really disturbing". Well this book was all that and more. Seriously, Mind-Fucking-Blown!

    First off, the writing is great. The characters are sinister, and you want to cheer for the good guy...but there really isn't o/>Actual/>MIND/>Buddy
    Bex (Beckie Bookworm)

    This one was definitely not for me and it's not for the dark content involved either.
    I don't actually mind dark in my books and actually read quite a lot of stuff that touches on the bizarre and just plain wrongness, but this just never manage to capture or even retain any of my attention and if I'm honest it was really bloody confusing and also at times rather boring.
    If this wasn't a review copy I am sure this would have been a DNF, I persevered to see if it got any better for me.
    This was told from the protagonists po
    Mar 10, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: buddy-read
    Buddy read with my favorite Greek girl.

    Initial thoughts: I still say that was the strangest book I've ever read. I thoroughly enjoyed it!!!!! Review to come.

    Actual rating: 4.5 stars. No spoilers!!


    Strange photo: strange aede.gif

    That's a strange gif, ya? Well, this is a strange book! It is unlike anything I've ever picked up. It's far from anything you've read either. I don't mean that in a bad way. I love when I come across a totally unique book. I storyline different from anything I've ever even thought up in this crazy head of mine.

    I can't s
    Angel Gelique
    This revised version is somehow even better than the original!

    “...murder is poetry...and I have written chapters with knives.”

    Raised by the charismatic and powerful leader of a following (Cyrus), Jack has been taught, since age seven, to efficiently and effectively kill at will.

    “Cyrus knew how to be human, just like them, exactly like them, so that they’d sway with him toward inhumanity.”

    Cyrus is a nasty, brutal and selfish man (megalomaniac, rather) who would sacrifice anything and anyone to rise to t
    Mary Teresa Reno
    Oct 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Recommended to Mary Teresa by: GoodReads first-reads giveaway
    A huge thank you to L.C. Barlow, both for writing this incredible book and for generously sending a copy to me in the GoodReads first-reads giveaway!

    W-O-W!!! I am totally blown away by this book, that I hardly know where to begin! I have read many, many books over the years, but the level at which "Pivot" engaged my brain in this incredible story does not happen very often. Ms. Barlow, you possess quite an eloquent gift for writing, as well as a brilliant imagination. There are so ma
    Chandra Claypool (wherethereadergrows)
    Oct 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: arc
    "Yes, yes, murder is poetry... and I have written chapters with knives."

    What a unique and interesting story. Opening chapter has a man teaching Jack, a seven year old, how to kill. Instantly intrigued! I know this has been published previously and after a cursory glance at the reviews after I finished, I wonder if I read the same book as those who read this years ago. How much did they change as the things people pointed out and didn't like, I didn't catch. How very curious.
    Nov 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Up front: I won this via Goodreads Giveaways. This has zero bearing on my review.

    Unlike my usual fare, and in spite of the teenaged protagonist, "Pivot" is not what I'd consider a Young Adult read.

    Let's start with the bad: the ending is slightly less than perfect, though I can't imagine what I would change. The printed version I got could use some copy editing. That's it.

    Other than those quibbles, I gotta say that this book - a self-published book by a first time author
    Aug 20, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
    This one has been Pivoting around my Kindle for a long time. Originally downloaded as a random freebie, it never really demanded attention, but now that it is (somehow) getting a rerelease and received (somehow) a very nice cover blurb from Josh Malerman, it seemed like a…sure, why not kind of read. In retrospect, should have left it sitting around. Maybe Malerman read a different book. Maybe a lot of people did. Because I can’t really think of any nice things to say about it at all. In fact, th ...more
    Sep 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: first-reads
    I cannot say how much I absolutely loved this book. In some ways I think it was truly brilliant. It is one of those rare books which grabbed me by the throat and pulled me and never let go. I was hooked from the very first page, and stayed engaged to the end. It was one of the most originally and unique things I have read in a long time. And I loved the absolute strangeness of it.

    One of the things which I found quite interesting about this book is that it very much centers around the
    Bethany Lovell
    Nov 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    WOW!! Such a compelling story, and though it was horrifying and beyond creepy, I couldn't stop reading it. I had some pretty disturbing nightmares a time or two.

    Jack... I had no clue, until it was directly pointed out to me. I never even suspected.

    Cyrus scared me to death. Patrick was both amazing and tragic, and I adored him. Roland ripped my heart out.

    I loved the exploration of the gray, where I think the majority of us hang out. There is rarely only black a
    Jun 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Wildly imaginative! Wonderful characters. Interesting plot. Vivid descriptions. Simply a GREAT read!

    *I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to read and provide a voluntary, unbiased and honest review, should I choose to do so.
    Back in the 1980’s and 1990’s, while I was teaching high school algebra, my students would occasionally ask why one of their classmates had committed a particularly heinous act. My answer was always the same, “Because they were taught, at an early age, by the most important people in their world, that it was OK to do so.”

    I would then follow up with this anecdote: “Suppose a child is born into a family of thieves. Day after day this child hears his parents discuss their thievery and o
    Jun 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    This was the first book I won on this site, so I was excited when I first received it. I started reading it that very same day, and could not stop. It is definitely one of the greatest books I’ve read recently. It had the right amount of everything.
    When the main character, Jack, is introduced to us, one is instantly eager to know more about the character and the character’s background. Everything is a mystery and as the pages are turned the story unfolds. Jack is, in my opinion, a very loveable
    Julie (HufflepuffGirl90)
    This book was confusing to me. Jack Harper is a young girl who is taken in by Cyrus, the leader of a mystical cult. Cyrus teaches her everything she needs to know to become an important person in the cult, including assassination. Jack is trained with the help of Roland, a man who does not stay dead, to kill in a variety of ways. Each time she is learning that killing is not something to be afraid of, or something that is wrong.
    Most of the novel seems to be build up and backstory to me. While i
    Oct 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Pivot by L.C. Barlow is one of the most unique books I've read all year. The story was so captivating that I actually woke up in the middle of the night to pick up the book again and keep reading. Jack is a quirky, cool, intriguing character and the story of Jack's past is well woven with the story of Jack's present relationship with Patrick -- another well-written character who is charming and seductive. Pivot is more literary than other books in the horror genre which could be part of the reas ...more
    Aug 10, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    I'm not at all sure how I ended up with this one on my Kindle. It isn't my usual genre and I had never heard of it. Having started five other books and instantly hated them, I opened this one. OMG! What a surprise! This was unlike anything I've ever read! Elegantly written, full of suspense and surprises, lots of sadness with some redeeming glimpses of hope.... Wow! Imagine my dismay to realize I'll have to wait for more from this author! A fantastic read!!
    Feb 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    An absolutely thrilling edge of my seat horror story which had me hooked from the beginning. Imagine a child raised by the devil and taught to kill. Jack is having strange feelings about the man who raised him; maybe everything is not as it seems. An excellent noir type of novel!
    Tammy Goodwin
    Oct 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
    I enjoyed this YA thriller. Cults and the paranormal and twists and turns. Characters are interesting and motivations are unclear making for a fast page turning read.
    Okay, it's about time I review this. (Now that I am coherent.) This book blew my mind. From the first page, I already knew I was going to like this book.

    The writing was very easy, yet was very grounded. I found myself reaching for the book whenever possible to keep on reading. The story flowed well; so well in fact, I read late into the night.

    The book had its creepy parts. Some scenes were really descriptive and I was totally horrified by what had happened. THAT is awesome. When a b
    There is something magical about discovering the right book at the right time. It resonates with some dormant part of one's subconscious, awakening childhood memories and old favorite songs, scents of seasons that have slipped away. After that first fortuitous reading, one finds that ANY time becomes the right time, and re-reading is inevitable. Pivot is one of the rare gems that fell into my lap in just such a way. I cannot fully express my glee at the promise of two more installments. L.C. Barlow w ...more
    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
    Esther Somorai
    The author offered a free copy by e-mailing her and requesting it. Thank you.

    A really GREAT eye-catching cover. For the most part the story kept my interest somewhat, except for a few places. I had hoped it would've had a positive outcome or redeeming factor, it did not, but maybe in the next two books of the trilogy. The main characters are living a meaningless life, but for the reader it could be an example of how not to live your life. An over use of the F word in the last part of
    Tamara! aka AmyG.Dala
    At first I wasn't sure I could get into the story. It has typo's that made things harder to grasp in a book with more twists and turns than a theme park map. But then, it all clicked and the story got more blasphemous, decadently so, and more bizarre, more surreal and then I had to wonder if it's all a heroin dream, or a dream with heroin and I couldn't stop reading it. Lines like "They expect from me a flicker, and I give them stars". Descriptive, beautiful, at times poetic and at other times i ...more
    Dec 27, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: fiction
    This is a well-written book and it really deserves at least four stars, if only for the effects of the big reveal that comes partway through. But it's bad for my sleep cycle, and thus was only a three-star book for me. There's a lot of graphic violence and pure evilness, and even though the point of that is to contrast with the good, it's too much for me.
    Jul 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    This week on Dragon Ball Z TehBen’s Book Club, we take a look at another author from our Nerd Girl Books tour, L.C. Barlow. Our focus today will be her horror/thriller book titled simply: Pivot. Such a title hardly offers any prelude to the story’s plot, unlike other more direct words such as “Scandal” or “Massacre”. My blue-collar mind immediately thought of literal pivots, which seems an unlikely topic for a book now that I’m thinking about it… Maybe it’s an alternate story of how that scene f ...more
    Jul 31, 2019 rated it it was ok
    If you enjoy this review, please consider checking out my blog for more.
    Please note-I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

    I don’t read much horror, so maybe I was expecting the wrong things from this book, but even though I was interested and finished it quickly, I never really got invested in any particular character or storyline. Very little is learned about Jack, and what is discovered is told point blank to the reader by her internal monologue or another charact
    Oct 28, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    The main character in this book is introduced to readers at the age of seven. Jack Harper is being raised by Cyrus Harper, the leader of some sort of mystical religious cult. Strange events happen around a small box Cyrus carries about, especially when someone displeases him. They go into a room with Cyrus and the box and after screams may be heard, the door will open and everything will have lost its colour and been turned white. Absolutely everything in the room! Jack is curious about the box ...more
    Amanda Bedingfield
    Disclaimer: I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

    Jack and Cyrus, creative characters. A cult, with more powers contained that any other cult before. How can this combo go wrong? You’re right, it can’t. It didn’t. I loved this. I was enthralled through every page of this story. We follow Jack throughout life being raised within a cult led by Cyrus, a twisted man who seems to have taken well to mentoring Jack. Jack learns things most seve
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    Jack's Gender Bending 4 23 Nov 29, 2013 09:45PM  

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    L.C. Barlow is a writer and student. She has a BA and MA in English, as well as an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Southern Maine's Stonecoast program.

    Barlow has had several short stories (flash and otherwise) published in various journals, including Oak Bend Review, Flash Fiction World, Linguistic Erosion, Flashes in the Dark, Separate Worlds, Every Day Fiction, and Pop
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    “They expect from me a flicker, and I give them stars.” 3 likes
    “And in this simple moment, I suddenly began to wonder if perhaps we shake hands with God in agreement to the lives we live, before we are ever born.” 2 likes
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