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Shepherd's Warning

(The Elders Book #1)

4.15  ·  Rating details ·  660 ratings  ·  146 reviews
For years the abandoned MacKenzie mansion remained hidden in rural Wisconsin. Rumors and stories of apparitions, odd noises, accidents, and strange deaths in or near the property were enough to convince the townsfolk it was haunted and they stayed away.

Lucas MacKenzie and his brother Nate know nothing of this when they inherit the property and decide to bring their familie
Paperback, 392 pages
Published July 10th 2019 by Land of Oz LLC
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Average rating 4.15  · 
Rating details
 ·  660 ratings  ·  146 reviews

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Empress Reece (Hooked on Books)
4.5 stars...

So it took me a minute to get into this. There were so many different elements thrown around at the beginning that I literally thought to myself, damn the author has thrown everything in here but the kitchen sink. This of course gave me some reservations and I honestly didn't think this book was going to work out for me. But WOW, once I got to about the 25-30% mark, the story took off and it didn't let up until the end! Those reservations I had went right out the window. The author w
Aug 04, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: firstreads, horror
I won this book in a goodreads drawing.

In Wisconsin there's a haunted house, with secret passages and all the trimmings. It seems like a normal haunted house book, maybe a Lovecraft deal. But then some immortal magician shows up, and it becomes more or less a super hero story.

A story that doesn't quite know what it wants to be.
Feb 11, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was really good. It had a good amount of creepy/scary parts. I got this book free from Booksirens. Big thanks goes out to them as well as the author and publisher. I'm excited to read the next book in the series. I'm confident it'll be awesome too!

I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.
Carla (Carla's Book Bits)
I'm so sorry to say that Shepherd's Warning was a bit of a disappointment for me.

I went into this expecting to find a hidden gem, and while the writing and story are ok... I don't think this would be much of a stellar find, even for fans of the haunted house genre.

My main gripes with it were:
‣ The names all blur together. Lloyd introduces *lots* of characters from the get-go, and she does give us physical descriptions of each as they're introduced, but I just don't remember the details, hair
Sep 22, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
I think this book was interesting. I didn't like it as much as I wanted to but I think it was scary in parts and thrilling in parts. I was just expecting a little more from this book but it was just ok for me. *This book was given to me for free at my request From Netgalley and I provided this voluntary review.* ...more
Sherry Fundin
A house in the woods. The man. The woman. A hidden entity.

Who doesn’t love a good haunted house story?

Lucas and his brother, Nate, had inherited the MacKenzie mansion in the small town of Lost Arrow. It had sat deserted for years and they were there to make it their home. HGTV would be along for the ride, documenting the transformation.

They had no knowledge of it’s reputation, the accidents, the things that go bump in the night.

Tom Wolfe had sworn to protect the house, while he waits for the own
Sep 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, horror
Shepherd’s Warning by Cailyn Lloyd is an engrossing supernatural horror that was properly fitting my need for a good scare, especially with Halloween being right around the corner! Ms. Lloyd does a wonderful job on her debut novel creating an eerie atmosphere and building up feelings of terror.

Set in the appropriately creepy Mackenzie mansion in rural Wisconsin, brothers Lucas and Nate Mackenzie begin a renovation on the inherited mansion that will become more and more menacing by the day. Sheph
Monica Reents
Mar 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
Thank you to NetGalley and Land of Oz Publishing for gifting an ecopy of Shepherd's Warning by Cailyn Lloyd to me; I wrote this review by choice and honestly.

I felt that the story was engaging and did well in ramping up to the climax and a perfect ending! I would say this is a perfect horror/ghost story with an interesting magic system, good character and plot development, and it's obvious that the author planned the conflict with a lot of thought and used it to push the story forward.

I loved
Mar 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Wowee. This was probably one of the best haunted house stories I've read in a long time. I literally can't put into words how much I enjoyed this.
The book started off a little slow; building up a picture, drawing us in. And then BAM! About 30% in it was just all out tension and suspense. I could not put it down.
This was my first read from the author and I look forward to reading more.
Highly recommend.

Thank you NetGalley for allowing me the opportunity to review this.

Not grabbing me, unfortunately.
Mar 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is not your typical haunted house story. I was surprised to read the perspective of a ghost and a 1500 year old mystic/wizard as characters. It's an entertaining read. ...more
Jessica (Read book. Repeat)
You can find this review and all of my others over at

I received a copy of this book from the publisher, Land of Oz LLC, and the author via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Actual rating of 3.5

There's always been something strange about the old MacKenzie Mansion out in rural Wisconsin. Over the years there have been numerous unexplained deaths and disappearances surrounding the house. The locals steer clear, better to be safe than sorry. So when Luc
Melissa Borsey
Jun 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book was one of the best haunted house/ghost story that I have read in a long time. This book captured my attention from the first page and just kept getting better and better. I thought the ending was pretty shocking. I thank Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review this book and I look forward to reading more books by this author.
Brennan LaFaro
Dec 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
I can’t even put into words how thrilled I get when I open up a novel where I know I’m going to find an evil house inside. Oh, and the house is located in a town that is not all it seems on the surface? Sign me up. At a glance, Cailyn Lloyd has created a story that is going to remind the reader of various incarnations of the Amityville Horror. Lloyd knows this, alludes to it at points, and uses it to her advantage.

Shepherd’s Warning introduces a fair few characters all at once early on, and I f
Keith Chawgo
Oct 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is basically a hard review to write and not even sure where to start. The reasoning behind this….when you have something so fantastic and love so much, how do you review it without giving anything away. I went into this cold with little knowledge beyond a brief synopsis and it caught me off guard. This is an excellent haunting tale that really gets under the skin.

Starting out in a typical fashion, haunted house, dark past, a death prologue then family moves in to renovate, you are wrong to
Oct 06, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is an okay-ish book. I have a thing for stories about haunted houses in any case, so most books about haunted houses get me hooked. I did have a couple of ... initially minor issues that kept grating though.

First: inconsistencies make any meh. A couple of pages before we find out Shepherd is a grey hat hacker who wants to keep a low profile technology-wise, he dislikes technology enough that he wants to pay with a severely outdated payment method, while a couple of sentences later he c
Mar 08, 2020 rated it liked it
So the blurb was very appealing- love a good old world haunting. The concept is great, but... the actual writing is fairly pedantic and the characters are pretty stereotypical and two dimensional. It's an entertaining tale but it's nothing special, much to my disappointment. ...more
Micky Parise
Jun 02, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First time reading Cailyn Lloyd and quite impressive. Great story line, story flowed, characters were spot on and hard to put down book. Recommend.
Excellent haunting story.
Jun 19, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shepherd's Warning by Cailyn Lloyd
Review of a NetGalley eARC.

This is a haunted house story in the vein of The Shining or The Amityville Horror (which is referenced explicitly in the text). The McKenzie family: Lucas and Laura, with Lucas's brother Nathan and his wife Ashley, along with Lucas and Laura's granddaughter Leah, arrive at the brothers' inherited house in the Wisconsin countryside. A grand old Tudor mansion, they decide to renovate it for HGTV, but things soon take a terrifying turn. A
Won this in a giveaway, a big thank you to everyone!

Interesting ghost story, some parts predictable, others a surprise. Likeable characters with realistic reactions.

Overall, an enjoyable and entertaining read.
Aug 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: giveaway
I really liked this book, and I was not expecting what happened towards the end. I still don’t really know how I feel about the end of the book, tbh, but i thoroughly enjoyed it
Steve Stred
Jun 22, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Through my recent Twitter post, I had a few folks reach out and ask if I'd review their work. Cailyn was one such person. When she messaged, I mis-read her email and snagged 'Shepherd's Warning' from Amazon, when she was in-fact emailing me about 'Quinlan's Secret' the second book in the series! So, I dove in to read Book One and have already started Book Two!

What I liked: We pick up with a group of people renovating a house in the hopes of getting an HGTV show. The house has sat unoccupied
 Reading Reindeer 2021 On Proxima Centauri
SHEPHERD'S WARNING is an immensely engrossing horror/paranormal novel with contemporary issues and deep historical background. The paranormal elements are inventive, focusing on one ancestral lineage. Additionally the author weaves in a congruent plot line in one Kenric Shepherd, University professor and sorcerer. This is a "can't-put-down" paranormal thrill ride, wrenching reader's emotions and delivering an ultimately gratifying and re-readable novel. ...more
Aug 19, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I admit to giving up on this. I can understand slow build ups but this was entirely too slow. At no point was it really scary and the characters were so dull I had to keep flipping back to remember who was who.
Will Blosser
Dec 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
On the surface, Cailyn Lloyd’s debut novel Shepherd’s Warning seems like a classic haunted house story, but there is far more to it than that. When Lucas MacKenzie’s mother passes away, he and his wife Laura inherit a mysterious country home. The home is mysterious largely because Lucas’ mother never once spoke of it to her family, and the inheritance came as a complete surprise. Still reeling from the death of Lucas’ mother and some other personal losses, the MacKenzie family is hoping to be ab ...more
Aug 24, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 really (just when is Goodreads going to add the half-star rating?!)

A very good story especially as a debut book. It was somewhat different, starts out rather slow but picks up the pace, and the resolution was really good. It kept me reading until far later than usual, as I wanted to see how it ends.

Having Shepherd, the long-lived sorcerer involved and there being a group of these people calling themselves The Elders, was a really interesting twist for me, especially as I love fantasy in gene
Jun 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I love when fate intervenes. I was on NetGalley to see what books I needed to post reviews for, and I decided I wanted to read a horror book soon. So I clicked on that section, and saw the cover for Sheperd’s Warning because it caught my eye. When I read that it takes place in rural Wisconsin, and it was a debut novel, I knew that would be my next read.

And I must say, an excellent book for a new author.

Cailyn Lloyd does a fabulous job with the building of suspense. While I was never freaked ou
Jun 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Let’s talk.

I just finished Shepherd’s Warning by Cailyn Lloyd and can I just say I am overcome.

I’ve never read a horror book before, not even the widely popular Goosebumps by R. L. Stine and this being my first horror book I am extremely impressed. It didn’t scare the shit out of me but it certainly held my attention from beginning to end and I devoured it in the span of one and a half days. It was that worthy.

Since this is an ARC my standard style of reviewing won’t apply (because that would me
Lora Milton
Jan 13, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: horror
(Mild spoilers)

This had a very atmospheric first chapter, dated in the 1970s, then it jumps to modern day with a completely different tone. It took a few chapters for me to start getting to know the characters and get into the story, but when the supernatural things started happening, my interest was definitely piqued. There were some original ideas on the haunted house theme, as well as some well-known tropes.

The character development was rather sluggish. There was just no one with enough perso
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A lifelong writer, Cailyn Lloyd, spent three years living in a truly haunted house and experienced firsthand the nuances of strange and eerie places. Hayward's Revenge is her third novel, the highly anticipated conclusion to The Elders trilogy.

In addition to writing, Cailyn is an accomplished weather photographer and her work has appeared in newspapers, textbooks and publications including Life Ma

Other books in the series

The Elders Book (3 books)
  • Quinlan's Secret (The Elders Book #2)
  • Hayward's Revenge (The Elders Book, #3)

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