Bloodlines by Keith Cockrell is an exhilarating read. Shannon is a graduate student wanting to excavate some portions of an old fort. An uncertain image of a child disappearing into a tree throws Shannon into the middle of a decades long mass murderer’s web of interlocking disappearances, deaths, family histories, romances, and racial tensions.
Cockrell does a masterful job of combining every character there is to meet on the Gulf coast and setting them all on a fictional Louisianan island rich with history. He gives the reader every twist and turn, every dark corner, every kill and near-miss that a monstrous murderer demands.
What makes this novel so intoxicating is watching the characters struggle in their own way with what life is, what death is; when life is worth living and death is worth giving. Sometimes, the answer can surprise you.
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You can find this original post on my local literary blog, Tevis Bluff.