I’ve been lucky enough to “know” Billy (because we’ve never actually met in real life) since the earliest stages of our publishing careers. He is genuine, honest, chivalrous, and has one of the most creative minds around. If you doubt that, just read his post from today, in which he thanks folks for reading his books. He’s just. that. nice.
But don’t read his books because he’s nice.
Read them because he’s a mix of Stephen King and Ron Rash, with a sprinkle of Rick Bragg and Tom Franklin.
Read them because you won’t be able to put them down because his stories are true and scary and real and impossible all at the same time.
Take this new one, for instance. Here’s the synopsis:
With the “profound sense of Southern spirituality” he is known for (Publishers Weekly), Billy Coffey draws us into a town where good and evil—and myth and reality—intertwine in unexpected ways.
Everyone in Crow Hollow knows of Alvaretta Graves, the old widow who lives in the mountain. Many call her a witch; others whisper she’s insane. Everyone agrees the vengeance Alvaretta swore at her husband’s death hovers over them all. That vengeance awakens when teenagers stumble upon Alvaretta’s cabin, incurring her curse. Now a sickness moves through the Hollow. Rumors swirl that Stu Graves has risen for revenge. And the people of Crow Hollow are left to confront not only the darkness that lives on the mountain, but the darkness that lives within themselves.
This book is CRAZY! Crazy good, crazy paced, and crazy wicked! But more than that…beyond the plot…it’s a story that will have you asking heart questions and hard questions…questions about what you believe and what’s real and what’s not-so-real…about what’s important and what’s not.
I love the way he centers the story around teenagers (maybe since I have three of my own), because teenagers are young enough to feel invincible but old enough to have wisdom unspoiled by cynicism like adults. I love the way he uses dialect and setting to pull you right in to the deep, dark mountains of Appalachia. I love the way he’s not afraid to blend mystery and faith, good and evil, the seen and the unseen.
And the end? Good GRIEF, the end!
Billy’s written a lot of really, really excellent books. But this one…this one is my favorite so far!
Billy Coffey’s critically acclaimed books combine rural Southern charm with a vision far beyond the ordinary. He is a regular contributor to several publications, where he writes about faith and life. Billy lives with his wife and two children in Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Visit him at http://www.billycoffey.com. Facebook: billycoffeywriter Twitter: @billycoffey
“Coffey spins a wicked tale . . . [The Curse of Crow Hollow] blends folklore, superstition, and subconscious dread in the vein of Shirley Jackson’s ‘The Lottery.’”