THE HUM AND THE SHIVER by Alex Bledsoe
Kirkus Star

THE HUM AND THE SHIVER

KIRKUS REVIEW

Distinctive variation on the elves-among-us theme, from the author of Dark Jenny (2011, etc.).

In Cloud County, in the mountains of east Tennessee, dwell the Tufa, a dark-haired, dark-skinned folk already in residence when the first Europeans arrived. Consummate musicians, with songs passed from generation to generation, they are also rumored to have unearthly powers. Private Bronwyn Hyatt, "the Bronwynator," a war hero and First Daughter of the Tufa, was shipped back from Iraq with a smashed leg and shoulder, although she knows these will rapidly heal. Unfortunately her injuries have cost her the ability to play or sing. An eerie “haint,” the ghost of a fellow-soldier, followed her home from the war with a particular message to impart, while horrid omens of death swirl around her mother, Chloe—who must pass to Bronwyn a particular song before she dies. Then again, arrogant, brutal ex-boyfriend Dwayne Gitterman, a Tufa who rejected his roots and partly was the cause of her fleeing to join the army, is, most unwelcomingly, still hanging around. For some reason she's powerfully attracted to young non-Tufa preacher Craig Chess, who vainly attempts to induce the politely indifferent Tufa to visit his church. Reporter Don Swayback, having lost all interest in his job but tasked with interviewing Bronwyn, learns he's part Tufa. Lurking on the back roads to snare the innocent and unwary is thuggish state trooper Robert Pafford. And what of Rockhouse Hicks, a supremely nasty old man who seems to do nothing except hang around outside the post office? This powerful, character-driven drama, set forth in superbly lucid prose, occurs against an utterly convincing backdrop and owns complications enough to keep everybody compulsively turning the pages.

A sheer delight.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-7653-2744-4
Page count: 304pp
Publisher: Tor
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2011




2011 BEST OF FICTION: SCIENCE FICTION AND FANTASY:

Sci-Fi THE HUM AND THE SHIVER by Alex Bledsoe
by Alex Bledsoe
Sci-Fi WITH FATE CONSPIRE by Marie Brennan
by Marie Brennan
Sci-Fi SPELLBOUND by Blake Charlton
by Blake Charlton
Sci-Fi WHEN THE SAINTS by Dave Duncan
by Dave Duncan

MORE BY ALEX BLEDSOE

Sci-FiHE DRANK, AND SAW THE SPIDER by Alex Bledsoe
by Alex Bledsoe
Sci-FiWISP OF A THING by Alex Bledsoe
by Alex Bledsoe
Sci-FiWAKE OF THE BLOODY ANGEL by Alex Bledsoe
by Alex Bledsoe

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

Sci-FiTHE DRAGONS OF BABEL by Michael Swanwick
by Michael Swanwick
Sci-FiSHADOWS IN THE STARLIGHT by Elaine Cunningham
by Elaine Cunningham
IndieDEMONS OF THE ISLANDS by Monica Ponder
by Monica Ponder