Leave Me Alone, I'm Reading: Ravens by George Dawes Green

Tessa Bright Wildsmith
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Shaw McBride and Romeo Zderko have been best friends since they were children. Both work in a tech-support office in Ohio. One day they decide they’ve had enough and head south toward the Florida Keys for a new start.

The Boatwright family lives in Brunswick, Ga. The father, Mitch, is a devote religious man. Mom, Patsy, drinks too much, buys lottery tickets and dreams of the day they will win big. Then one day it happens. The Boatwrights win $318 million in the Georgia State lottery.

Shaw and Romeo just happen to be passing through Brunswick when they hear about the winnings. Shaw decides then and there that they should get half the winnings. After all, he’s a good guy, and he would do good things if he had that kind of money. Shaw takes the family hostage until the money is paid out, and he gets his half. The only problem will be keeping the Boatwrights - Mom, Dad, daughter, Tara, and son Jase - in check for the next four days, without anyone going to the police or raising any red flags, and that is going to be harder than Shaw thought.

Shaw’s plan consists of him staying with the family while Romeo roams the town, ready to kill their loved ones if anything goes wrong. As the days go by and the stress increases, everyone’s sanity starts to give way.

“Ravens” is one of those books that has a dark premise but tells the story in a unique and funny way. Even though Shaw is extorting millions of dollars from the Boatwrights and threatening to kill their family, the book is still funny and comedic throughout.

The characters are all unique and interesting. Shaw is a little crazy and not a very likeable guy, but Romeo is somehow sympathetic. He’s not a killer. He doesn’t even care about the money, but he does whatever Shaw says because he’s a good friend. He’s prepared to kill before he will let Shaw down. The family isn’t as interesting except for Tara. She’s in her early twenties and is smart and strong. The mother and father follow her lead in stressful situations, and she manages to keep them going even when they are at their breaking point.

“Ravens” is definitely a unique, interesting book unlike anything I’ve ever read. George Dawes Green is a fantastic writer to be able to tell such a dark, scary story in such a light and funny way. The story is gripping and compelling and kept me flipping pages to the end.

If you’re looking for something to read that will both scare you and make you laugh until you conclude with a suspenseful, thrilling end, I highly recommend “Ravens.”

Have you read “Ravens?” Discuss your thoughts on the book at www.BlountToday.com under Columnists.

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