Sunday, March 18, 2018

✱✱ Book Review ✱✱ Gods of Howl Mountain by Taylor Brown

Gods of Howl Mountain
by Taylor Brown



In Gods of Howl Mountain, award-winning author Taylor Brown explores a world of folk healers, whiskey-runners, and dark family secrets in the high country of 1950s North Carolina.
Bootlegger Rory Docherty has returned home to the fabled mountain of his childhood - a misty wilderness that holds its secrets close and keeps the outside world at gunpoint. Slowed by a wooden leg and haunted by memories of the Korean War, Rory runs bootleg whiskey for a powerful mountain clan in a retro-fitted '40 Ford coupe. Between deliveries to roadhouses, brothels, and private clients, he lives with his formidable grandmother, evades federal agents, and stokes the wrath of a rival runner.
In the mill town at the foot of the mountains - a hotbed of violence, moonshine, and the burgeoning sport of stock-car racing - Rory is bewitched by the mysterious daughter of a snake-handling preacher. His grandmother, Maybelline “Granny May” Docherty, opposes this match for her own reasons, believing that "some things are best left buried." A folk healer whose powers are rumored to rival those of a wood witch, she concocts potions and cures for the people of the mountains while harboring an explosive secret about Rory’s mother - the truth behind her long confinement in a mental hospital, during which time she has not spoken one word. When Rory's life is threatened, Granny must decide whether to reveal what she knows...or protect her only grandson from the past.
With gritty and atmospheric prose, Taylor Brown brings to life a perilous mountain and the family who rules it.


Gods of Howl Mountain releases March 20th




Momma Says: 2 stars⭐⭐

Growing up in the South, it was impossible not to hear the stories of secrets, bootlegging, faith healers, and the like. One look at the cover and blurb for this one and I was anxious to dive in, and dive in, I did - only to dive right back out several times. The idea for this one was certainly intriguing, and Brown does know how to paint a scene with vivid descriptions - of everything. While I do appreciate setting a scene and giving the reader a detailed picture in their mind, the gripping story I was hoping for got a bit lost in the details. The characters were rather one-dimensional and stereotypical, and while there were secrets to be discovered, without that connection to any of the characters, I was never able to immerse myself in the story. In the end, I had spent more time setting this one aside for later than reading it. Quite possibly, this just wasn't the book for me. I once heard someone say that no two people ever read the same book, and that is about as accurate as it gets, so if the description for this one appeals to you, by all means, give it a gander.

**ARC provided by NetGalley and St. Martin's Press



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