Gods of Howl Mountain by Taylor Brown

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As readers we all encounter good authors, and often times we find great authors, but rarely do we discover an author like Taylor Brown. Brown is truly gifted. His writing literally transports you to a time and place where you can feel the vibes of the story, smell the atmosphere, see the events as they unfold, hear the tinkling of the glass bottles blowing in the breeze on Granny May’s spirit tree. Gods of Howl Mountain is such a book, and Granny May is a character that will stay with me for a long time to come.

Gods of Howl Mountain takes place in 1950s North Carolina centering on Granny May and her grandson, Rory Docherty, a young GI and bootlegger just returned home from his service in Korea. Rory lost part of his leg in battle. Good, honest work is hard to find when you return home disabled. Whiskey running is what Rory knows. Howl Mountain is full of secrets; the biggest being the truth behind Rory’s mother being struck speechless and sent to live in an asylum while pregnant for him. Now the mountain is home to lawmen, snake-handling preachers, stock car racing, a rooster named Commandant and a certain hat maker who catches Rory’s eye.

Brown’s southern novel has mystery, action, adventure, romance, strong family bonds and friendship. As a reader, I felt like I was riding shotgun with Rory and brewing remedies alongside Granny May. I have to go out on a limb and say that Taylor Brown reminds me of Steinbeck. In my opinion, Gods of Howl Mountain is destined to be a classic. And that ending…

~ Leslie M.