Rating: 4.75 stars out of 5
Fans of the Whyborne & Griffin series will love the fact that this story is principally about Griffin and his relationships in his hometown of Fallow, Kansas, especially his relationship with his mother, Nella.
As the story opens, Whyborne is still struggling with what he learned about himself a few months before when he touched the Maelstrom and realized he is an otherworldly being, and he’s worried about Griff’s reaction as much as he’s worried about not being human. Refusing to tell Griff, he becomes cool and aloof and actually causes Griffin more worry than if he had simply told him the truth.
When a visitor from Griff’s hometown arrives and seeks out Whyborne at the museum, they never get to find out the real reason behind the visit as the man is slain before he can even speak. And he’s slain by a man Griffin recognizes from his hometown. The mystery gets stronger when they discover the man’s roommate, also from Fallow, seems to be afflicted by the same malady as the other man. It’s quickly evident that the couple has to travel to Fallow to find out what’s really going on, and there’s no way Christine and Iskander will allow them to go alone.
In Fallow, they discover a plot to pave the way for the return of the Masters. There’s a mysterious disorder that seems to be spread by the well someone drilled on the land for which the town was named. Due to his gift of second-sight, Griff is the only one who can see the people affected by this malady, and he’s shocked to discover that the woman who married the man he once had sex with is now married to his cousin and is very definitely infected. And—she lives in his mother’s home. The mystery is even deeper than the foursome at first fear, but it appears Whyborne’s usual talents are not able to be used to rid Fallow of the menace. What happens to the foursome, as a group and individually, kept this reader riveted to the book to the end.
A nail-biter like others in the series, this story is highly intriguing, and at the same time, it’s very revealing of Griff’s past relationships and the reasoning behind his eviction from the town. How the author manages to weave such interesting, interwoven, and twisted mysteries always astounds me. In this case, I can only say that I am once again in awe.
Cover art is by Lou Harper who just took over the cover art and is redoing the series. I like it in that it’s colorful, and I like the depiction of Whyborne, though I always liked the previous images which seemed to suit his tall, gangly, awkward personality better. But I don’t like the look of Griffin at all. He seems too slight and too homely to be the man I’ve been reading about for years.
The eighth book in the Whyborne & Griffin series, I very highly recommend Fallow as I have others in the series. Those who haven’t started should pick up Widdershins and catch up to this fascinating series—as soon as possible!
Kindle Edition, 210 pages
Expected publication: August 5th 2016
SeriesWhyborne & Griffin #8