28 April 2023

A River of Crows by Shanessa Gluhm Book Tour!

April 17-28, 2023 Virtual Book Tour

A River of Crows by Shanessa Gluhm

In 1988, Sloan Hadfield’s brother Ridge went fishing with their father and never came home. Their father, a good-natured Vietnam veteran prone to violent outbursts, was arrested and charged with murder. Ridge’s body was never recovered, and Sloan’s mother— a brilliant ornithologist— slowly descended into madness, insisting her son was still alive.

Now twenty years later, Sloan’s life is unraveling. In the middle of a bitter divorce, she’s forced to return to her rural Texas hometown when her mother is discharged from a mental health facility.

Overwhelmed by memories and unanswered questions, Sloan returns to the last place her brother was seen all those years ago: Crow’s Nest Creek. There, she is shocked to hear a crow murmuring the same syllable over and over: Ridge, Ridge, Ridge.

When the body of another boy is found, Sloan begins to question what really happened to her brother all those years ago. What she discovers will shock her small community and turn her family upside down.

Praise for A River of Crows:

“In A River of Crows, Shanessa Gluhm spins a complex web of murder and family revelation that propels the reader forward at a breakneck pace. Just when you think you know where the story is headed, she reveals another thread. If you haven’t yet read Shanessa Gluhm, you need to put her on your to-be-read list.”
~ Allen Eskens, USA Today bestselling author of The Life We Bury

"A twisted family dynamic and complex personal history combine with a touch of romance in Shanessa Gluhm’s knockout second novel. A River of Crows grabs on with the opening pages and holds a reader tight to the very end."
~ Elena Taylor/Elena Hartwell, author of All We Buried and the Wait, Wait, Don’t Query (Yet) series

"A River of Crows is a superb second novel that shows Shanessa Gluhm is a naturally gifted storyteller and writer, on a par with all the greats."
~ Rob Samborn, author of The Prisoner of Paradise and Painter of the Damned

"Shanessa Gluhm crafts a thought-provoking story of revelation, family ties, discovery, and murder... Readers who choose A River of Crows for its mystery will find an unexpected draw and value in the emotional components which keep the plot action-packed and charged with transformation."
~ D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review

"Gluhm peels away layers of family secrets in this dual timeline narrative, right up until the climactic final reveal, a twist that truly surprised me. Well done!"
~ Laura Kemp, award-winning author of the Lantern Creek Series

A River of Crows Trailer:

Book Details:

Genre: Thriller
Published by: TouchPoint Press
Publication Date: April 2023
Number of Pages: 427
ISBN: 978-1956851588
Book Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads

Read an excerpt:

Mud squished under Sloan’s brown Doc Martens as she climbed the steep ridge. She had run up this incline ten thousand times but wasn’t as surefooted now.

Sloan’s shirt clung to her back and her hair was already frizzing. “We’re in for another hot summer,” the friendly postal worker told her yesterday. As if there was a different kind of summer here in East Texas.

The water moved slowly today, trickling around massive boulders in the middle of the wide river. It was the kind of sound that soothed people, the peaceful noises they played when getting a massage or trying to fall asleep. In a few more months it would be difficult to even hear the water over the sound of the crows. That was a sound nobody could fall asleep to.

Not much about the river had changed. Sloan’s favorite climbing tree still stood; its limbs just as gnarled as she remembered them. If she closed her eyes, she could still see a pink glittery Easter egg in the crook of a branch, the last one she’d found the year they hunted eggs here.

A moss-covered fallen tree trunk she remembered was still here too. How many times had she, Ridge, and Noah balanced on it? The same trail still cut through the tall, pinecone-littered grass— the one made by animals visiting the water’s edge. Bits of tinfoil and leftover plastic baggies from picnics still littered the bank.

Sloan peered into the creek. Minnows flashed beneath the surface and brought back a memory. She was a toddler wading in the ford of the river, holding hands with both her parents, splashing and singing “Ring Around the Rosie.” They were laughing. They were happy.

Hard to believe this peaceful place was the site of her brother’s death. Of course, the water hadn’t been peaceful that day. It had rained for weeks and the creek raged. But it hadn’t been the creek that took Ridge’s life. It was their father.

Sloan closed her eyes to stop her tears. She inhaled, breathing in wet earth and rotting bark. Now was no time for a panic attack.

She sat down and touched the water. They’d never found her brother’s body, just a shoe, a piece of his torn t-shirt, and the god-awful green beanie he loved so much. And, of course, his blood. “Where did you go, Ridge?” Sloan asked her reflection.

A crow cawed loudly from a tree. Sloan wondered if her mom had been out here yet to look for nests, wondered if she even cared to anymore. Sloan stood. Only one way to find out, and she couldn’t put it off any longer.


Excerpt from A River of Crows by Shanessa Gluhm. Copyright 2023 by Shanessa Gluhm. Reproduced with permission from Shanessa Gluhm. All rights reserved.


Shanessa Gluhm

Shanessa Gluhm works as a librarian at an elementary school in New Mexico where she lives with her husband and children. It was during her own elementary days when a teacher encouraged Shanessa to share a story she wrote called, “Piggy the Kid” with the class. They asked for a sequel and she hasn’t stopped writing since.

Her debut novel, Enemies of Doves was an IAN Book of the Year Finalist in the category of first novel, an NIEA Finalist for cross-genre fiction, and first place winner in the Chanticleer Clue Awards for mystery, suspense, and thriller fiction.

When Shanessa is not writing she enjoys bird-watching, reading, and watching true crime documentaries. Shanessa loves to hear from her readers and the best way to connect is via e-mail or her Facebook page.

Catch Up With Shanessa Gluhm:
BookBub - @shanessalashea
Instagram - @shanessagluhmauthor
Twitter - @GluhmShanessa
Facebook - @authorshanessagluhm
& check out Readers' Roost, the Shanessa Gluhm Books Street Team Facebook Group!

My Thoughts

A River of Crows by Shanessa Gluhm takes place in two different times. In 1988 and 2008. In 1988 Sloan Hadfield's brother went fishing with their dad and never returned because of certain clues, Sloan's father was charged and sentenced with Ridge's murder even though a body was never found. He was suffering from PTSD from the Vietnam War and would act out at times

 In 2008, Sloan is 20 years older and soon to be divorced. Sloan has come back home to take care of her mother who has been in a mental facility and is being discharged. Her father will soon be released from prison and she never did believe that he had anything to do with Ridge disappearing.

The river is known as Crow's Head Creek, where Ridge disappeared, where her mother often goes to study the crows that live there. She felt that there was a man who abducted children for many years may have been why Ridge disappeared, this man has just been apprehended and Sloan wants to talk to him to ask about her brother.

As time goes on, secrets are brought to light that enable Sloan to get a true understanding of her father and her brother and why her mother does crazy things. She forms relationships with people she never thought she would and the ones she trusted, she no longer does.

This is one of that kinds of books that really does hold your attention, plus things I never knew about crows, such that they have funerals for their deceased, and that they live up to 20 years in the wild and over 50 in captivity. Very interesting indeed.

I did enjoy this novel, I love a dual-time story, and I believe it takes a lot of research to be able to write this kind of story. 

I give this novel 5 stars!
I received a copy of the book for review purposes only...

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