The novel begins when Professor Beth Lowe’s dog, Flapjack, is savaged by wolves. Flapjack not only survives but grows larger… and more vicious. A thousand-year cycle of carnage is reaching its climax once more, and the peaceful wooded hills will soon be smeared with blood. Sheriff Cutlip leads his community in a hunt for the hidden terror, but when his own brother is bitten, the sheriff must confront terrible choices, and he can’t do so alone.
The adorable family dog, Flapjack, is just what Beth and Lizzie need to help them come together as a new family. Flapjack changes, but will he emerge as hero or villain? It’s a close call, and you will need to read right to the end of the book to find out.
Here’s an except:
Flapjack sat and listened. The two big ones were talking, and he heard the one called B’th leaving. He heard the sound of her car pulling out, and knew he was alone with the one called M’nca. Master’s voice was loud again, and as the dog listened, it told him the time had come. Rage began to fill him, cold and deadly. He must go to Master, and the big ones were keeping him here. Walking over to his food bowl, he surveyed its contents. It held no allure for him now. He wanted meat, blood, the struggle of something in his jaws, the crunch of broken bones, and the feel of a limp body waiting to be consumed.
The stunning artwork is by Karri Klawiter and the book was edited by Terry Jackman who runs the BSFA Orbiter critique group for writers (which I wholeheartedly recommend, and you don’t need to be British to join!) and assisted by our wonderfully helpful beta reader team. Thank you to all who helped make The Clearing the success it is.
Thomas’s keyboard hasn’t had much of a rest, though. He has a collection of dark fables coming very soon, and one story will be published on the website. See the Restless Souls page for more details.