New! WICKED TEMPER Official Book Trailer (by Randy Thornhorn)

Behold …

(Crank up the sound!)

RT

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A Gift: “I Heard The Bluebird Sing” by The Zolla Boys

Listen up, Children. If this don’t touch your heart, then you ain’t got one …

(Ben and Sam–you are great and glorious to hear, here!)

RT

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When I find myself … Mother come to me …

First embers of the Season.

image

Love to you, to you all, and to all you let be.

RT

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THE KESTREL WATERS ~ In The Beginning were The Brothers Brass …

Chosen as Best General Fiction Novel finalist by the 2015 Indie Book Awards!   “An extraordinary work…”   ~   William Peter Blatty  “Captures the tragedy of romantic and familial love better than any story I have ever read.”   ~   Janeiro Bento

The Kestrel Waters_New with Indie1

buy now button Kestrel Waters

The towering and incredible Southern love story The Kestrel Waters  has now received 5-Star ratings from over 9 out 10 readers, including raves from celebrity authors and critics, and is a best Book-Of-Month pick by the largest online Southern book club, On The Southern Literary Trail (Goodreads).

===> Watch THE KESTREL WATERS Book Trailer <===

buy now button Kestrel Waters

___

Hear the twilight song of Kestrel.

He has not always been this night-winged angel.   He was once a star, a guitar star so righteous.    He was once a lost boy in love.

In The Beginning were The Brothers Brass.    In The End there is no end to what one wounded girl’s heart will give.    And no end to what one brother will give for the other.

Raised in Savannah by the sea, together, The Brothers Brass voices chime like heavenly bells.    The oldest brother Kestrel falls in love with a girl named Bettilia, a wild child who hides in the treetops—hiding from her bad daddy on a ghostly mountain called Riddle Top.

“I was haunted throughout by a sense of mystery and otherness.    This book is a mesmerizing, wonderfully written and extraordinary work of the imagination…Thornhorn, where the hell have you been?”    ~    William Peter Blatty   (author of The Exorcist )

Soon all the Family Brass falls for Bettilia.   She touches Kestrel, she touches everyone.    And they touch sweet Bettilia, forever.    Then comes that fateful day when Kestrel says “I do” to his dance with the devil—his devil within and without.

“Captures the tragedy of romantic and familial love better than any story I have ever read.”    ~    Janeiro Bento

The Kestrel Waters  is an eerie, heroic, and beautiful tale of human love, like none you’ve ever known.    An epic fable of an epic family whose hearts are comic, profane, and profoundly true.

“Mellifluous, Lyrical…with a darkness that creeps like kudzu.”   ~   Kirkus Reviews

The Kestrel Waters (A Tale of Love and Devil)  by author Randy Thornhorn.

“One of the South’s wildest new voices…” ~ The Oxford American Magazine

“Randy Thornhorn has the talent to blend a kind of mystical backdrop with gritty southern realism that I didn’t think was possible … If I had to pick one thing that sets Thornhorn apart from other southern storytellers (beyond his ability to mix fantasy and realism), it would be the masterful way he sprinkles backwoods dialect into meaningful dialogue.    You get the sense you’re learning a long lost language, one that is simple and alluring.”   ~   R.W. Ridley    (author of The Oz Chronicles)

The Kestrel Waters - Back Cover-web

________________

More readers’ comments:

“I just finished The Kestrel Waters. I started it this morning and read it mostly in one sitting…I could not put it down. The language was beautiful. Honestly, I think it an amazing book…It was a profound experience.”

~ Rebecca Jacobson

The Kestrel Waters is one of those books that leaves the reader with an emotional hangover. It’s difficult to start reading another book, because one’s feelings are still so influenced by the book just read. This emotional hangover doesn’t happen too often for me, and I’m a voracious reader. Indeed, it happens more often with music. But in a way I can’t explain, The Kestrel Waters is like music…”

~ Joy Williams

“I had no idea what to expect when I started reading The Kestrel Waters…I didn’t expect to care for the characters the way I do. I didn’t expect to be as concerned for them as I became. And I certainly didn’t expect to finish this book with a lump in my throat, tears in my eyes, and the sense of having experienced something profound.

This was a hell of a good read had I sought only an engaging yarn of good and evil, love and redemption, and a mystery solved. But it’s a lot more than that.

This is immersive, obsessive, and deeply affecting. Disorienting – in that way that a good book can connect you to something that leaves a tint on everything around you, an aftertaste… this is powerful.”

~ Jeffrey Lindner

“I found it masterful…I feel almost as haunted by [Bettilia] as Kes did. She’s a haunting, haunted little creature, but I fell in love with her. Her snappish wit, her obvious devotion to Mambly and Mama, her courage and strength, and her fears…The climax was riveting.”

~ Brianne Harris (Age 20, Illinois)

The Kestrel Waters_New with Indie1b

buy now button Kestrel Waters

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~ My Montessori of Love ~

montessori_love_mary_morris

We first made love by firelight, by my fire in my home of wood.

It was warm, it was nurture, with animals and animal love. She was a teacher. And I had never known such a knowing teacher’s touch. She was a strong woman, she said. And she knew in her heart and head and her teacher’s hands that she had found her a good strong man. She said at last she had been welcomed, warmly, into her true home, her one true home, she said.

For she knew we would marry, marry, she said, our vows would wed us together. I’m going to marry this guy, she said of me to others, again and again. I’m going to marry this guy, she said. But until then I was invited to come and stay the night with her, with her in her same old bed.

I gave her my ancient mountain ring, and I wore hers, and we were matched with our patchwork quilt for marriage on our magic mountain day. All before I came to stay, that first special night when I came to stay, with her and her very special children, her boys who were the ages of men.

She was separated but divorcing, she said. But I soon learned she and a husband had been separated six long years, six years but still no divorce. Oh, it would happen any day now, she said, it would happen soon, soon, but she knew not when.

Then I first came into her bedroom and all his stuff was still on his dresser, his cuff links and the odd husband thing of his or the other, the kind of stuff guys have atop their dresser tops. His clothes still hung in the closet, the closet I was told to use.

It wasn’t until I gently mentioned this that it ever occurred to her, that something was amiss. And only then did she hide his things away. Yes, I was fortunate enough to be there and watch her hide her ex-but-not-really-ex husband’s things away, and out of sight, I watched her do this most all the very next day, after I had spent my first night.

I wondered how she would have felt if I had another woman’s clothes and jewelry openly laid out in my home of wood, when we first made love by the firelight. But I did not go there too strongly, for I loved her and did not want to hurt her heart or her head. So most of this went unsaid.

Her boys, the ages of men, well there were four. And each was addicted to at least one chemical or more or some other mind-numbing electric drug. Each was drifting or failing, three in the home — and one on the street, the one hooked on the hard stuff and doing dumb crimes. She was afraid of that one and was glad I was there to protect her from him.

She said she wanted to come stay with me to put some distance betwixt her and the scary son, the one who stole from them and scared her to feed his scary habit. She felt safer with me there, she said, in her house of things kept safely locked in boxes.

A week or so later, the one on the street was arrested for snatching a lady’s bag and for several other dumb little crimes, crimes to refill his needle. But now, now that he was in lockdown inside that county jail, well, she would have to stay near him, be near him, to weep for him and feel his pain for him just as she felt the pain of the other three addicted ones still locked inside her home, who gave her no respect but loved her just the same.

Oh, and she would not hear a bad word said against any one of her addicted ones, these poor benighted sons born to her and a drunkard husband who she knew she did not love the day she married him, who she knew was what he is and was when he passed out, unconsummated on their wedding night, the drunkard she had never saved her babies from, a drunkard who she gave herself to and waited on, despite his disrespect, feeling his weakling’s anger, who she allowed to school her children in The Ways of Weakness and Addiction 101 from semester to semester, as one school year led to another. Who she allowed to leave his cuff links on his dresser and his clothes in the closet, long after he was gone but not gone, though they were still in the course of soon divorcing, yes, we’re divorcing, after six long separated years.

But she was a strong woman, she said. She was a strong woman, she said.

She told me of people, others in her outer ring of mountain folk, who had questioned or disapproved of her schooling and parenting and how she would now have little to do with them or such critique when they questioned her methods of mothering. I finally had to ask myself, what parenting, what mothering? I saw only a smothering malaise. But she loved her children, you know, yes, and they loved her, you know, because they said so, they said so, and they said so, they said.

And when these sons of the teacher fucked up, grew angry, or did murder, she did lots of talking with each one, lots of talking and talking, and when all else failed there was always more of their sad, soft talking. It was bound to work one day, wasn’t it, wasn’t it? If we talk sad and soft long enough, now wouldn’t, wouldn’t it though?

I finally had to admit, there were no teachings or parentings here to question. There was only a house of soft and addicted and floating children.

But she was a strong woman, she said. They all would drown if she did not save them.

And soon I made her feel weak, she said, because I was too strong and too forceful, too angry with her method. I should not question her methods, she said, nor should I even display a method, any method. So I simply had to go.

Yes, she was ashamed, for all her credit cards and accounts were still in the drunkard’s name. Everything was left up to the drunkard, who was gone but not gone, else the drunkard might get angry, so she waited and she waited for everything from the drunkard, she waited while nothing changed.

But I was too harsh if I noticed these things. And in time she would tell me so.

Oh, I was good for heavy lifting, I suppose. And for moving loads of heavy stuff and driving hundred of miles, leaving my home of wood and my blessed beasts behind. To journey far in heat of day and dark of night, weathering all weathers so I could be there to sing hymns of her to her or join our bodies in sweet communion or just to hold her and listen kindly when she wanted to weep over her fears and failures.

But only she could say their names, anybody else was just being cruel. She was so gruelingly sensitive, you know? So sensitive and so afraid. So all the while I kept singing her sacred hymns, hymns of reassurance, hymns for our salvation. But some refuse to be saved.

I am glad I was good for something, for a while, for her. For her I gave my everything. But this was a family thing, she said. Can’t you see? She was all that could save them.

And I, well, I was too harsh if I suggested something might be wrong here. So I simply had to go.

Because she was so strong. You know.

And it was I who made her feel weak, I who made her feel wrong and not strong.

So I’m gone now, as you might guess. Oh yes. I’ve been dismissed. I simply had to go.

Still I love her more deeply with every dying day, with each passing season and semester, I feel so deeply her pain and the pain of her, long after I’ve gone away What is left of me loves her dearly with all my tattered soul. But me with no mother, or lover, or teacher to talk to, to talk to soft and low. Oh, did I mention I gave her my ancient mountain ring? And everything, everything, everything?

So these are my lessons of love. This is what little I’ve learned.

I’ve learned, sometimes, this is how love has to go.

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.
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© 2016 Randy Thornhorn

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Roux True, Untrue

Possibly the greatest nourishment the human soul and spirit can receive in this life is from two lovers sharing a dream together. It rises as an irresistible frothy roux of sweet arousal and boundless joy in both hearts. But thereafter, as the days and years come to pass, as sometimes they sizzle, simmer, as sometimes they roil like stormy seas in a skillet, their shared struggle will be for neither heart to ever let go of the dream. Because it only takes one untrue heart, you see — it only takes one who loses heart for the dream to melt into a chillingly bitter puddle of sorrow, now no longer feeding or sustaining two lost and lonely shadows. And rare is the sweet aperitif that can revive this love, this dream, once its aroma and life enriching flavors have gone to vinegar.
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RT

Through this Thornhorn window …

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Fugitive Waltz

Her heart was a Bonnie and Clyde
Forever being shot full of blood and bullets
Her body and soul riddled with fear
In an endless slow motion dance
Of deathly recoil
From all her imaginary scary places
Within the onward march of a
Real world with real uncharted
Roads and reckless cars
A real world of scars she seeks out
And needily needs
For her to pull the trigger
Again, again
Boom Boom Boom
Splat and splat
She pulls the trigger inside her head
To keep her dying and dying
A little more
A little more
Dying
In her slow-mo delay
With the blood and the bullets
Of despair
That tear her apart
In her trance
In her fugitive waltz
Her damnation’s dance
With each new lovely day.
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.

.fugitivedance
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© Thornhorn

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Herald the shadowed things…

This_Night_This_Hearth_Beheld_Yes_Yes_Yes_Kes

Herald the shadowed things, the hearth and tinder,
Lo, she comes, yon midnight madonna, newborn and beheld.

RT

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The Brothers Everly

The_Everly_Brothers

What strange creatures brothers are…

~ Jane Austen

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Maybe Someday …

ThornhornEyes Meme shallow words

Maybe someday I’ll get over you
when I finally understand how you
see life differently than I do,
because your life is a series of
broken promises. Shallow
words are normal to you.
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.
.

RT

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“We all have our own path in life,” she told me…

ThornhornEyes Meme DYNAMIC

“We all have our own path in life,” she
told me with a certain serene desperation.
“And every family has its own dynamics”

“Yes,” I said. “And too much of the time that
dynamic is toxic, rotten to the gills, and
that path leads off a cliff with hemorrhage,
agony, and lingering death ten stories below.”
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RT

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“We all have our own path in life,” she told me …

ThornhornEyes Meme DYNAMIC

“We all have our own path in life,” she
told me with a certain serene desperation.
“And every family has its own dynamics.”

“Yes,” I said. “And too much of the time that
dynamic is toxic, rotten to the gills, and
that path leads off a cliff with hemorrhrage,
agony and lingering death ten stories below.”

.
.
.
RT

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~ My Montessori of Love ~ (A True Story)

montessori_love_mary_morris

We first made love by firelight, by my fire in my home of wood.

It was warm, it was nurture, with animals and animal love. She was a teacher. And I had never known such a knowing teacher’s touch. She was a strong woman, she said. And she knew in her heart and head and her teacher’s hands that she had found her a good strong man. She said at last she had been welcomed, warmly, into her true home, her one true home, she said.

For she knew we would marry, marry, she said, our vows would wed us together. I’m going to marry this guy, she said of me to others, again and again. I’m going to marry this guy, she said. But until then I was invited to come and stay the night with her, with her in her same old bed.

I gave her my ancient mountain ring, and I wore hers, and we were matched with our patchwork quilt for marriage on our magic mountain day. All before I came to stay, that first special night when I came to stay, with her and her very special children, her boys who were the ages of men.

She was separated but divorcing, she said. But I soon learned she and a husband had been separated six long years, six years but still no divorce. Oh, it would happen any day now, she said, it would happen soon, soon, but she knew not when.

Then I first came into her bedroom and all his stuff was still on his dresser, his cuff links and the odd husband thing of his or the other, the kind of stuff guys have atop their dresser tops. His clothes still hung in the closet, the closet I was told to use.

It wasn’t until I gently mentioned this that it ever occurred to her, that something was amiss. And only then did she hide his things away. Yes, I was fortunate enough to be there and watch her hide her ex-but-not-really-ex husband’s things away, and out of sight, I watched her do this most all the very next day, after I had spent my first night.

I wondered how she would have felt if I had another woman’s clothes and jewelry openly laid out in my home of wood, when we first made love by the firelight. But I did not go there too strongly, for I loved her and did not want to hurt her heart or her head. So most of this went unsaid.

Her boys, the ages of men, well there were four. And each was addicted to at least one chemical or more or some other mind-numbing electric drug. Each was drifting or failing, three in the home — and one on the street, the one hooked on the hard stuff and doing dumb crimes. She was afraid of that one and was glad I was there to protect her from him.

She said she wanted to come stay with me to put some distance betwixt her and the scary son, the one who stole from them and scared her to feed his scary habit. She felt safer with me there, she said, in her house of things kept safely locked in boxes.

A week or so later, the one on the street was arrested for snatching a lady’s bag and for several other dumb little crimes, crimes to refill his needle. But now, now that he was in lockdown inside that county jail, well, she would have to stay near him, be near him, to weep for him and feel his pain for him just as she felt the pain of the other three addicted ones still locked inside her home, who gave her no respect but loved her just the same.

Oh, and she would not hear a bad word said against any one of her addicted ones, these poor benighted sons born to her and a drunkard husband who she knew she did not love the day she married him, who she knew was what he is and was when he passed out, unconsummated on their wedding night, the drunkard she had never saved her babies from, a drunkard who she gave herself to and waited on, despite his disrespect, feeling his weakling’s anger, who she allowed to school her children in The Ways of Weakness and Addiction 101 from semester to semester, as one school year led to another. Who she allowed to leave his cuff links on his dresser and his clothes in the closet, long after he was gone but not gone, though they were still in the course of soon divorcing, yes, we’re divorcing, after six long separated years.

But she was a strong woman, she said. She was a strong woman, she said.

She told me of people, others in her outer ring of mountain folk, who had questioned or disapproved of her schooling and parenting and how she would now have little to do with them or such critique when they questioned her methods of mothering. I finally had to ask myself, what parenting, what mothering? I saw only a smothering malaise. But she loved her children, you know, yes, and they loved her, you know, because they said so, they said so, and they said so, they said.

And when these sons of the teacher fucked up, grew angry, or did murder, she did lots of talking with each one, lots of talking and talking, and when all else failed there was always more of their sad, soft talking. It was bound to work one day, wasn’t it, wasn’t it? If we talk sad and soft long enough, now wouldn’t, wouldn’t it though?

I finally had to admit, there were no teachings or parentings here to question. There was only a house of soft and addicted and floating children.

But she was a strong woman, she said. They all would drown if she did not save them.

And soon I made her feel weak, she said, because I was too strong and too forceful, too angry with her method. I should not question her methods, she said, nor should I even display a method, any method. So I simply had to go.

Yes, she was ashamed, for all her credit cards and accounts were still in the drunkard’s name. Everything was left up to the drunkard, who was gone but not gone, else the drunkard might get angry, so she waited and she waited for everything from the drunkard, she waited while nothing changed.

But I was too harsh if I noticed these things. And in time she would tell me so.

Oh, I was good for heavy lifting, I suppose. And for moving loads of heavy stuff and driving hundred of miles, leaving my home of wood and my blessed beasts behind. To journey far in heat of day and dark of night, weathering all weathers so I could be there to sing hymns of her to her or join our bodies in sweet communion or just to hold her and listen kindly when she wanted to weep over her fears and failures.

But only she could say their names, anybody else was just being cruel. She was so gruelingly sensitive, you know? So sensitive and so afraid. So all the while I kept singing her sacred hymns, hymns of reassurance, hymns for our salvation. But some refuse to be saved.

I am glad I was good for something, for a while, for her. For her I gave my everything. But this was a family thing, she said. Can’t you see? She was all that could save them.

And I, well, I was too harsh if I suggested something might be wrong here. So I simply had to go.

Because she was so strong. You know.

And it was I who made her feel weak, I who made her feel wrong and not strong.

So I’m gone now, as you might guess. Oh yes. I’ve been dismissed. I simply had to go.

Still I love her more deeply with every dying day, with each passing season and semester, I feel so deeply her pain and the pain of her, long after I’ve gone away What is left of me loves her dearly with all my tattered soul. But me with no mother, or lover, or teacher to talk to, to talk to soft and low. Oh, did I mention I gave her my ancient mountain ring? And everything, everything, everything?

So these are my lessons of love. This is what little I’ve learned.

I’ve learned, sometimes, this is how love has to go.

.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.

© 2016 Randy Thornhorn

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You Ain’t Just Love …

image

RT

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Do YOU Dare To Hear WICKED TEMPER?

On AudioBook at last! Wicked Temper comes alive in voice, words, and song at Audible, iTunes, and Amazon.com. Narrated and performed by the author, Randy Thornhorn — in a production that you will swear is a full cast of stark and mesmerizing characters.

A rare, riveting, fast and ferociously funny fable …

http://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/Wicked-Temper-Audiobook/B016QVVITI/

“Unforgettable … An unnerving literary experience. The lovechild of William Faulkner and H.P. Lovecraft.” ~ Kirkus Reviews

“Thornhorn, where the hell have you been?” ~ William Peter Blatty (author of The Exorcist)

“An instant Southern Classic … Wicked Temper isn’t good — it’s great. In the vein of William Faulkner, Cormac McCarthy, Harper Lee, and Erskine Caldwell.” ~ R.W. Ridley (author of The Oz Chronicles)

http://www.audible.com/pd/Fiction/Wicked-Temper-Audiobook/B016QVVITI/

image

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Strong? Strong is when …

“You ain’t strong because you suffer,” he said. “Not when you suffer for fool notions, you ain’t. Strong ain’t when you keep picking your prideful ass back up to keep trying at them same old easier ways that everybody likes. Them ways that ain’t never worked out healthy for you or for them you keep saying you love. Strong? Strong is when your ass finally gets up, gets wise, and gets humble and tough enough to make them hard  damn changes. Them changes that hurt bad at first, changes that you may catch holy hell for, but are good for you and everybody else in the long run. That, my sweet darlin, is strong.”

RT
 
 Thornhorn_Strong

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Roxie Watson on Georgia Musication Pilot Episode …

Yes, we were there that wonderful winter’s eve …

R

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The East Alabama Book Festival! (aka This Sunday With Thornhorn)

East Alabama Book Festival

Hey, folks. Please cast your eye upon the first annual East Alabama Book Festival to be held this coming Sunday, October 18. sponsored by The Gnu’s Room (Auburn/Opelika’s independent bookstore), Southern Humanities Review and The Republic.

I hope those of you in shouting distance will descend upon this do. It is sure to be a day filled with mighty good words, aromatic foods, and vendors peddling all manner of shiny baubles, strange roots, and sweet berries from the vine.

A certain Randy Thornhorn will be reading and signing along with many other writers and poets of note, from near and afar.

Here is hoping a peck of you can be there. Here, also, are a couple of links with more details and info about the festival:

http://www.thegnusroom.com/#!east-alabama-book-festival/c100x

http://www.oanow.com/news/auburn/article_88dd45b4-6edb-11e5-a493-9bcc3bb39c50.html

Yours from the back of beyond,

RT

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New! WICKED TEMPER Official Book Trailer (by Randy Thornhorn)

Behold …

(Crank up the sound!)

RT

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WICKED TEMPER – The plot thickens …

Here is the newly certified paperback edition cover for Wicked Temper, now available on Amazon.com (though their website can take a day or two to reflect the new cover change). The hardback edition is about a week away—and, personally, I always prefer the hardback cover because it’s not all cluttered with plot synopsis text or the barcode, since they all go on the inner dustcover flap, which leaves the artwork clean as it was truly meant to be seen.

WICKED TEMPER CREATESPACE PAPERBACK_MASTER

buy now button Kestrel Waters

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Listen to “Roxie Watson” – My Gift To You This Weekend

Here is a song all you Thornfolk need to hear. The great Roxie Watson (If I Could Be There)!

RT

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Once Was A Magic Woman

Once was a magic woman.
Don’t know where she went.
Know she was heaven sent.
Gave her a magic ring,
Everything I had to give.

She still feels like home
To me.
A wild river.
Warmly wet,
Swollen and wild.
A spreading and
Voluptuous tree.
Now she wants none of me,
None of me or
Our tree.

So I leave her
With these blossoms,
With wind chimes,
And my prayer.
May, someday, there come
Another new Alice,
Another magic morning sky
Where she will fly unafraid
And set herself free.

Yes, I leave her
With a sweet bye and bye,
With love everlasting,
From me.

Once_Was_A_Magic_Woman

© Thornhorn

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Dearest Thornfolk, I give you The Zolla Boys!

In the same tradition as The Brothers Brass in my new novel, The Kestrel Waters, here are two young men bound for glory.

Their songs are poignant and haunting, their harmonies are sublime. Treat yourself to The Zolla Boys!

(You can learn more about their background and the fast blossoming career of the Zolla Boys at www.thezollaboys.com)

Through this Thornhorn window …

RT

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One and Two

There’s a jagged hole now
In my heart
So cold the wind blows through
Where once your heart within my heart
Your ring within my ring
Held an everlasting me and you
When we were one and two.

I ask
Forgive the lonesome whistle
Where my heartbeat used to be
The strain of the wind
Wringing through me
The sting of its cold refrain
No song of ours left
No song of ours left
No song of ours left to sing.

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One_And_Two_Rings_smaller

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© Thornhorn

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WICKED TEMPER gets a glorious KIRKUS REVIEW!

“An unnerving literary experience, like finding a fiddleback spider on one’s shoe or a copperhead snake coiled and ready to strike under one’s bed.”

Excerpted from the new Kirkus Review of Wicked Temper  by Randy Thornhorn:

Two runaway teenagers go on a crime spree and get lost in a backwoods region of the southern Appalachian Mountains in Thornhorn’s (I Be the Christis, the Kid Beheaded, 2014, etc.) novel.

Thirteen-year-old Tizzy Polk’s father is a tyrannical preacher who’s repeatedly warned her about boys like Matthew “Rebel Yell” Birdnell. The son of a pig farmer, Birdnell sees no future for himself in the mountains and wants out of Cayuga Ridge in the worst way—and when he steals his father’s ’49 Studebaker pickup, Tizzy, searching for some kind of freedom, joins him with a little persuasion. With a stolen gun, the two runaways commit a series of crimes, culminating in a murder, and attempt to evade the law by driving up some backwoods roads that lead to Riddle Top, a “great black crag with bristle hairs” that “gave up sunlight like a jagged miser then quickly stole it back.” When they meet its creepy inhabitants, they quickly realize that the scary stories about the dark mountain are true.

A blend of Southern gothic and hillbilly noir, this story is utterly readable, in large part because of Thornhorn’s masterful use of dialect, rich description, and immersive use of atmospherics. The power of this story undeniably comes from the author’s darkly lyrical voice, and his sinister reimagining of Appalachia virtually comes alive on the page: “One tiny shack gave way to the next, each shack with its small barren field, desolate dead cornrows littered by blackbirds and autumn leaf.” Even minor plot inconsistencies … can’t detract from the overall power of this story. Like the lovechild of William Faulkner and H.P. Lovecraft, Thornhorn, with his unique narrative style and twisted insight into southern life, makes this novel unforgettable.

An unnerving literary experience, like finding a fiddleback spider on one’s shoe or a copperhead snake coiled and ready to strike under one’s bed.
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THE KESTREL WATERS has a NEW COVER!

We be mighty pleased this morning. How about you?

Designed by award-winning graphic artist Dominick Finelle (whose clients have included AT&T, Harlequin, Penguin USA, Simon and Schuster, Scholastic, and Time Warner), here is the new hardcover, paperback, and e-book cover for The Kestrel Waters  by Randy Thornhorn?

What do you think of the novel’s completely new look?

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Dominick Finelle
(The July Group)

AWARDS: Art Direction Magazine – Society of Illustrators – Directory of Creative Talent – Master Eagle Family of Companies -National Academy of Fine Arts.

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Eureka! – THE KESTREL WATERS / The Indie Book Awards 2015

Great News! We just received notification that THE KESTREL WATERS by Randy Thornhorn has been chosen as Best General Fiction Novel finalist by the 2015 Indie Book Awards. (www.indiebookawards.com)

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