It’s said of Jim Morgan, he can kill you before you can blink and won’t blink as he does it. Called Thunder Crow by the Apache, like the thunder, men fear and respect him. As thunder portends the storm, the report of Jim’s rifle heralds another outlaw lying dead in the dust.
Sentenced to hang at fifteen for a murder he didn’t commit, he sits on the makeshift bed in his jail cell and thinks. He realizes he wants meaning to his life, and doesn’t waste time lamenting that the next day, March 15, 1870, may be his last on earth. All he wants now is a chance to live and prove that his existence isn’t some joke or folly of fate.
Never having known kindness, Jim unflinchingly faces bullets and torture, but cringes at a gentle touch. He ferociously hides parts of himself and his past to avoid the condemnation and gasps, should those around him learn the secrets of his origin, or view the scars he would rather die than reveal. To Jim, everything comes at a cost, but what he doesn’t realize is he’s the one setting the price.
Rising Crow is the first in a series, so come along and enjoy the ride!
A well-crafted story that was hard to put down.
Reviewed By Piaras O Cionnaoith for Emerald Book Reviews
This story had every element a good story should have. A solid plot, attention to detail, but best of all fleshed out, well-written and well-rounded character development. There’s an abundance of well-illustrated scenes that really make you feel like you are right there in the story, and that’s something I really look for in a good book. From the opening chapter, setting the tone for the entire work, to the end at which you find yourself pondering your own sense of justice, Rising Crow flows like a sparkling river. It is a great read and is filled with dramatic and well-described moments that will stay with you for a long time.
This captivating and commendable work had me immersed from the beginning. The story flows from scene to scene with ease, and the author shows exceptional ability when it comes to storytelling. The writing style is such that I was drawn into the story from the very beginning. This doesn’t happen for me very often.
It’s one of those stories that come along once in a while that makes you want to read it non-stop until you get to the end. Although this was quite a ‘meaty’ read, I must admit it took me a few sittings to finish it because of time restraints. I’m giving nothing further away here. And this, I hope, will only add to the mystery and enjoyment for the reader! A highly recommended read. Five stars from me.
I’ll certainly be looking forward to reading more from K. L. Byles in the future. Truly a great read and a debut that suggests great things for Byles future as a writer. Part two of this series, Roaring Crow, will be greatly anticipated.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
It isn’t overstating to say that K. L. Byles has been fighting from the beginning for the chance to write. Long before she was a published author, she came very close to not being at all.
She was born two months preterm, in the early 1960s, at a time when her chance of surviving was about thirty percent. She had to fight for her first breath even as those around her expected her to die. Her Irish birth mother, who wasn’t going to keep her anyway, gave K. L. Byles the first of the three names she would have just within her first six months. This was done likely because those attending expected they would need to administer last rites.
K. L. survived and was placed in a foster home for six months. Then she was adopted and grew up in Richmond, Virginia. It was there that, at the age of eight, the main character in her Crow series of novels sprang from a dream, and where she first began writing about him when she was thirteen. Though K. L. Byles survived nearly dying as an infant, that would not be the last time she would be close to never having the chance to write her life’s work.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, of the roughly nine-million passenger car accidents each year only 2.1% involve a rollover, however, rollovers account for 35% of the deaths. K. L. Byles survived one rollover accident at highway speed. She sustained a concussion and required two-hundred stitches and thirty staples due to a lacerated scalp. Several years later she survived a second rollover accident that occurred in nearly the same location as the first, again suffering a concussion. Surviving one rollover is lucky, surviving a second is nothing short of miraculous. There is a spiritual element to the story in the Crow series. She believes God created her to tell it and has kept her alive to see all the novels someday written and published.
K.L. Byles resides in scenic rural Bedford County, Virginia. When she isn’t babysitting her grandson, she continues to write and is looking forward to expanding her company, Barrel Proof Press, LLC to help publish the work of other struggling authors so they, too, can see their stories take flight as has her first novel, Rising Crow.