I picked up this book because I had heard great things about it and the author is going to be at Malaprop’s (a local bookstore) this Friday! I did enjoy A Land More Kind Than Home so I will be going to the reading/singing of his newest, This Dark Road to Mercy.
Summary from Goodreads: For a curious boy like Jess Hall, growing up in Marshall means trouble when your mother catches you spying on grown-ups. Adventurous and precocious, Jess is enormously protective of his older brother, Christopher, a mute whom everyone calls Stump. Though their mother has warned them not to snoop, Stump can’t help sneaking a look at something he’s not supposed to—an act that will have catastrophic repercussions, shattering both his world and Jess’s. It’s a wrenching event that thrusts Jess into an adulthood for which he’s not prepared. While there is much about the world that still confuses him, he now knows that a new understanding can bring not only a growing danger and evil—but also the possibility of freedom and deliverance as well.
Verdict: 4 out of 5 stars. I loved that the book was set near where I live in western North Carolina. The setting made it even more interesting to me. It was a great story, told from the POV of three different people: the boy Jess, an old woman named Adelaide, and the sheriff. It was heartbreaking as well as disturbing (how people use religion to benefit themselves). There was nothing I didn’t like about the book, but I didn’t give it 5 stars because it wasn’t “unputdownable”.