Richard Leis's Reviews > Beneath Ash and Bone

Beneath Ash and Bone by D. Alexander Ward
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it was amazing
bookshelves: horror

This is the first book I picked out to read from the Night Worm's December book package, and it's grisly, Southern Gothic, and so, so good. Set just before the American Civil War, the novel takes on race in a compelling if familiar way, with a third-person persona narrator steeped in the language of the time but finding in Sheriff Sam Lock a good man dealing with both the legacy of slavery and his own tragic past. Doubting his own abilities, he finds himself in the middle of a blizzard and a mystery at the well-to-do Crownhill estate among family members and servants who keep secrets. Events quickly escalate in horrifying ways.

I enjoy the similarities between Sheriff Lock and detectives of noir fiction, and especially how flawed and lacking in confidence he is. The atmosphere is suitably dark, cold, and horrifying, there are vivid creepy details throughout, and the plot moves rapidly, but the page count seems just right for the happenings. As the blizzard escalates and darkness falls across the estate, I found myself turning the heat up in my own apartment. I'll be seeking out more dark tales from D. Alexander Ward.
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Reading Progress

December 25, 2019 – Started Reading
December 25, 2019 – Shelved
December 25, 2019 – Shelved as: horror
December 26, 2019 – Finished Reading

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