Archive for November 28th, 2017


Heaven’s Crooked Finger (Earl Marcus – 1) by Hank Early

Earl Marcus thought he had left the mountains of Georgia behind forever, and with them, the painful memories of a childhood spent under the fundamental rule of his father RJ’s church–a church built on fear, penance, and the twisting, writhing mass of snakes. But then an ominous photo of RJ is delivered to Earl’s home. The photograph is dated long after his father’s burial, and there’s no doubt that the man in the picture is very much alive.

As Earl returns to Church of the Holy Flame searching for the truth, faithful followers insist that his father has risen to a holy place high in the mountains. Nobody will talk about the teenage girls who go missing, only to return with strange tattoo-like marks on their skin. Rumors swirl about an old well that sits atop one of the mountains, a place of unimaginable power and secrets. Earl doesn’t know what to believe, but he has long been haunted by his father, forever lurking in the shadows of his life. Desperate to leave his sinful Holy Flame childhood in the past, Earl digs up deeply buried secrets to discover the truth before time runs out and he’s the one put underground in Heaven’s Crooked Finger.

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 Hank Early

Author’s Bio

Hank Early spent much of his youth in the mountains of North Georgia, but he never held a snake or got struck by lightning. These days, he lives in central Alabama with his wife and two kids. He writes crime, watches too much basketball, and rarely sleeps. Heaven’s Crooked Finger is his first novel. He’s represented by Alec Shane of Writers House.

In a previous life, he published some books as John Mantooth. Check them out here.

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My Review

5 stars

Earl Marcus is the child of a fire and brimstone preacher in a small mountain town in Coulee County, Georgia. RJ Marcus is a Pentecostal preacher that strongly believes in the word of God. When Earl is bitten by a snake when he is seventeen he is essentially kicked out of church, his home, and hated by everyone in town. Thankfully a midwife by the name of Granny takes him in and finish raising him.

Year later Earl has moved on and now lives in North Carolina as a private investigator. He still has bad memories about his father and refused to return when the man died. But then he hears that Granny is dying from pancreatic cancer and wants to see him one more time, he returns to the little town. When he gets there he finds those that hated him still hate him. But then he sees a picture of his father clearly alive after he is supposed to be dead and hears about strange happenings with teenage girls. He decides to look into both events.

This is a killer start to a new series from a new author. You can’t help but feel for Earl. He’s stuck in a small town that is enraptured with his father’s preaching and has a certain small mindedness that you can only find in a small town. When Early clearly is not accepted by God, his is discarded. I don’t blame him at all for not going back for his father’s funeral but I understand sucking it up for Granny. As for the mystery, I really liked the twists and turns you follow along as clues are revealed and red herrings dropped around. I was kept guessing until the end and really liked the big reveal.

This is a first in the series and I will definitely be keeping my eyes out for the next book. If you like a great thriller with religious undertones and some paranormal added in, you need to check this book out.

I received Heaven’s Crooked Finger from Sami at Roger Charlie for free. This has in no way influenced my opinion of this book.

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