A young boy grapples with unimaginable horror in rural Georgia.
Kyle’s mind is full of the things that might occupy any 10-year-old: the woods along the road to the reservoir, the green scum on the surface of the pond, his scratchy Sunday suit, the corn and the sweet potatoes planted on either side of the long gravel driveway that winds from his house to the road. That driveway is so long, in fact, that no one but Kyle can see the woman flip over her blue Chevelle when she brakes to avoid hitting him. No one even speaks about the accident, and the next day the crumpled car is gone, woman and all. Kyle wonders what happened to her, but soon his mind goes back to its familiar places. After his older brothers Wade and Jason torment him, tying him up and leaving him in the pasture with Buddy the bull, his younger sister Grace becomes his chief companion, playing treasure hunt and building campfires in the woods. But then one fire gets out of control, burning acres of woodland. Even worse, Grace realizes that she’s left her treasured Wonder Woman doll at the scene. When he sees their paralyzed neighbor Kenny Ahearn hiding the toy in his wheelchair, Kyle goes to retrieve the prize. He ends up an unwilling accomplice in the hiding of evidence to a string of crimes Ahearn committed before a stroke robbed him of his mobility. But what’s buried in the garden is nothing compared to what’s hidden in the attic. Kyle must overcome not only his fear but his guilt in order to stop a monster from killing again.
Suspense rather than mystery is the order of the day in Jerkins’ grisly debut.