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Hellbender (Murder Ballads and Whiskey Series Book 2) Kindle Edition

36 customer reviews

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Length: 234 pages Matchbook Price: $0.00 What's this?
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Series: Murder Ballads and Whiskey Series (Book 2)

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"It's well-written, character-driven horror. The setting is often beautifully described. The characters are complicated and capable of the unexpected. There's even gender equality--both men and women kick a little butt--men usually with guns (or tree limbs, rocks, ax handles, etc.) and women primarily with magic."-Catherine Ramsdell, POPMATTERS
 
"HELLBENDER is an engrossing, engaging novel about the power of family [...] played out deep in the Appalachian mountains where the law doesn't quite reach and where the weapons are fists, bullets, and a handful of ancient magic."-Blu Gilland, FEARNET

From the Author

"If you follow music, art, and culture of the American South, sooner or later you're bound to run into the letters, images, and unmistakable "look" of Hatch Show Print. We're one of the oldest working letterpress print shops in America, and over the years our posters have featured a host of country music performers, ranging from Country Music Hall of Famers Hank Williams, Bill Monroe, and Johnny Cash to contemporary stars such as Garth Brooks and Wynonna."-Hatch Show Print, Nashville, Tennessee.

Product Details

  • File Size: 515 KB
  • Print Length: 234 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1935738275
  • Publisher: Raw Dog Screaming Press (January 20, 2014)
  • Publication Date: January 20, 2014
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006AHKFRU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #414,427 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Jason Jack Miller knows it's silly to hold onto the Bohemian ideals of literature, music, and love above all else. But he doesn't care.

His own adventures paddling wild mountain rivers and playing Nirvana covers for less-than-enthusiastic crowds inspired his Murder Ballads and Whiskey series, published by Raw Dog Screaming Press. The next installment, All Saints, is due out in 2014. He is a creative writing adjunct at Seton Hill University, where he also mentors in the school's prestigious Writing Popular Fiction MFA program. Jason is a member of the Authors Guild and International Thriller Writers. He lives just outside of Pittsburgh with his wife, Heidi, and a cat. His blog is http://jasonjackmiller.blogspot.com. Tweet him @jasonjackmiller.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By J. Barnes on November 29, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
Welcome to wild and wonderful West Virginia but keep an eye out for snakes. Jason Jack Miller's Appalachian gothic tale explores twisty back roads where old-time clan feuds are not so distant and magic is still part of the every day. Henry Collins may not believe in his family history but he can't escape it.

Hellbender spins out like a fireside yarn told under the stars. Miller is an adept tour guide showing us the heartbreaking beauty of the mountains, introducing us to the way of life and beliefs there. Loaded with local color and adventurous side trips, Hellbender makes you feel as if you've really gone somewhere and returned a little wiser with some great stories to tell.

There's a lot packed into this book but probably the best compliment I can give is that it made me want to go to West Virginia and see where it all happened. Since this book is part of the Murder Ballads and Whiskey series the Appalachian adventure doesn't have to end. You can check out The Devil and Preston Black for more West Virginia wildness.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Darcia Helle VINE VOICE on June 15, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I have never been to the Appalachian Mountains. After reading this book, I feel like I know the area, as well as the people who call the land home.

Miller has a captivating writing style. His characters instantly come alive. Their journey is told in feelings and images that spark every sense. All of it captured me; the music, the traditions, the generations of family and how they related to one another, the feud, and the superstitions and witchcraft. This is one of those rare books that isn't just an entertaining read; it's an experience you'll be happy to immerse yourself in.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Tom Mehalek on December 8, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
Jason Jack Miller does it again! If you liked The Devil and Preston Black, then Hellbender is going to knock your socks off and have you gasping for air. As expected, Miller's characters were well developed - sincere and realistic. His scenic descriptions - excellent - in true Miller fashion. Miller's vivid imagery of Appalachia is something special. It's clear that he truly loves and appreciates the mountains, meadows, forests, rivers, fauna, music and culture of the area. I left southwestern PA many years ago and Miller's affection stirred up old memories that left me longing my home town. Miller is a true master of his craft. When his name is as well-known as King, Koontz, Patterson, and Iles, Hellbender will be dusted off and recognized as the gem that started it all.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Avid Reader on July 19, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I was born and raised in West Virginia (Yes-a separate state from Virginia), but this book is totally different from anything I have ever known. I know it is supposed to be fiction, but this "magic" is new to me. I have never heard of any of these types of "spells". They were not explained very well. Perhaps I am from the other side of the mountains. This sounds like a modern day Hatfield and McCoy Feud with a little witchcraft thrown in the mix. The description of the timbering is spot on; most timbering rapes the land and leaves it virtually worthless. The coal mining information was also accurate. Overall, it was an interesting story and I recognized lots of the places mentioned. But this is a side of West Virginia I know nothing about--if it even exists.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Old EnglishMajor on July 15, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
this is at least interesting for the local references. The story was rather disjointed and unbelievable. It actually got worse as it went on. Many of the "supernatural" references were not sufficiently explained to make them anywhere near believable (i.e., where did the canyon train come from?--out of the past? if so, how?".

All in all the novel promised much at the beginning and then just became rather silly. Perhaps the author was just in a rush to finish. Anyway, it was mildly entertaining and it was fun to read about locations that I know well. So much room for improvement though...
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Alfred D. Wallace on May 21, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
It's sort of refreshing to see a focus on old hill magic. I grew up with this stuff and some parts of the book felt very much like a good trip home. The author weaves a good and interesting story, if you like watching things unfold and become, then you'll love this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jana Boardman on April 26, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
is an inter-family sport of sorts. Old lore and old guns pepper the story with interesting quirks. And things aren't' t always as straight forward as we'd like.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By M. Brookes on February 1, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
I'll start this review by simply saying that this is a superb horror read, like most good horror tales this book is more than the genre label implies. The story concerns Henry Collins and starts with the burial of his sister, quite naturally he takes the death hard and moves away from his his family to find his own solace. Events bring him back and he learns more about his family's past and the truth about some of the family legends.

It's a story of love and discovery set in the Apalacian mountains and forests and of an old feud between two families. It's rare that I like everything about a book, but here are the tings that really stood out for me.

The first was the setting, more so it was how the author descibes the setting. In fact the authors command of language throughout is incredible, he has real talent and has a great turn of phrase. It's written in a style that immerses you in the world, not only of the physical location, but also for the people and culture that exists there.

Good writing might make a poor story acceptable, but for me story is king and here as well the author delivers. The mysteries of old beliefs seep into the story gently at first, becoming more entwined with the more prosaic reality as the story develops. The story is told through a strong lead character supported by a mix of family, freinds and enemies.

The pacing is also spot on, it evolves at a decent pace, interspersed with drama and revelation that kept me enthralled throughout. In summary this is an excellent read and highl;y recommended.
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