Ashes of the Earth: A Mystery of Post-Apocalyptic America

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Overview

Thirty years after global holocaust, the colony of Carthage still struggles to build its new world. While steam engines and other early industrial technology have empowered its economy, the fragile society is undermined by secret crimes, rifts between generations, government censorship, and a legacy of casting out those who suffer from radiation sickness.

Embittered survivor Hadrian Boone—once a revered colony founder—has been hounded by despair and the ghosts of his past into a...

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Ashes of the Earth: A Mystery of Post-Apocalyptic America

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Overview

Thirty years after global holocaust, the colony of Carthage still struggles to build its new world. While steam engines and other early industrial technology have empowered its economy, the fragile society is undermined by secret crimes, rifts between generations, government censorship, and a legacy of casting out those who suffer from radiation sickness.

Embittered survivor Hadrian Boone—once a revered colony founder—has been hounded by despair and the ghosts of his past into a life of drunkenness and frequent imprisonment for challenging the governor’s tyranny. But when a gentle old man, the colony’s leading scientist, is murdered, Hadrian glimpses chilling secrets behind the killing that could destroy the colony. Realizing that he may be the only one able to expose the truth, Hadrian begins a desperate quest through the underbelly of the colony into the wrenching camps of the outcasts, escorted by a young policewoman who struggles to cope with the physical and emotional remnants of the prior world. Ultimately, Hadrian’s journey becomes one of self-discovery. In his search to find justice, his greatest challenge is navigating the tortuous path of the human spirit in a world that has been forever fractured.

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  • Ashes of the Earth
    Ashes of the Earth  

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Having successfully portrayed both modern-day Tibet and Colonial America in two series, Edgar-winner Pattison (Eye of the Raven) launches a third with this brilliant if grim mystery set in the 21st century 25 years after global mega-acts of terror have destroyed all U.S. government entities and almost all infrastructure. Hadrian Boone, one of the cofounders of the struggling colony of Carthage, located near the Great Lakes, is one of those who remembers the former world, as the time before the apocalypse is referred to, but he's on the outs with the community's leaders and on the verge of being exiled. The chance discovery of a body triggers a series of events that reintroduces murder and other crimes to a community reliant on 19th-century technology. Boone's efforts to find the truth and what it implies for Carthage's future put him in harm's way time after time. Pattison blends the bleakness of The Road with a well-crafted whodunit plot for another winner. (Apr.)
From the Publisher
Praise for Ashes of the Earth

"With a vital cast of villains and heroes, a vividly grim setting, and inventive, hair-raising action, ingenious mystery-writer-of-conscience Pattison explores the psychological toll of mass destruction and the need to salvage ideas and values, rather than material riches, so that a just society can rise from the ashes." —Booklist (starred)

"Brilliant . . . Pattison blends the bleakness of The Road with a well-crafted whodunit plot for another winner." —Publishers Weekly (starred)

Praise for Eye of the Raven

“Evocative language, tight plotting, and memorable characters make this a standout.” —Publishers Weekly

“Throughout the novel Pattison superbly builds tension and explores a period of shifting and uncertain alliances and loyalties. A thoroughly gripping read.” —The Historical Novel Society (Editors’ Choice)

“With a keen eye and calmly rendered detail, Pattison deftly pulls the reader into the American Colonies through the investigation of Scottish Highlander Duncan McCallum.” —New Mystery Reader Magazine

“The pleasures of Eliot Pattison’s books, and Eye of the Raven is another smashing example, are threefold: high adventure in perilous landscapes, a hero stubbornly seeking the truth, and the haunting mysteries of ancient cultures.” —Otto Penzler, editor of The Vampire Archives

Praise for Bone Rattler

“Pattison's moving characters, intricate plot and masterful evocation of the time, including sensitive depictions of the effects of the European war on Native Americans, set this leagues beyond most historicals and augur well for future entries in this series.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Dark, complex and compelling in mystery, historical, and spiritual considerations, the reader wonders along with Duncan whether the New World will see oppression extended or explode in a new burst of freedom.” —Historical Novels Review

Praise for The Inspector Shan series

“A thriller of laudable aspirations and achievements.”—Chicago Tribune

“A rich and multilayered story that mirrors the complexity of the surrounding land, where few things really are as they seem.” —San Francisco Chronicle

“Pattison has taken a plot of an old-fashioned thriller and turned it into a glimpse into a culture . . . Thrilling and riveting.” —Denver Post

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781582436449
  • Publisher: Counterpoint Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/2011
  • Pages: 400
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Eliot Pattison is the author of The Skull Mantra, winner of the Edgar Award and finalist for the Gold Dagger, Water Touching Stone, Bone Rattler, and most recently Eye of the Raven. Pattison resides in rural Pennsylvania with his wife, three children, two horses, and two dogs on a colonial-era farm.

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Customer Reviews

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( 8 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 8 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 4, 2011

    Way to expensive for an ebook!

    Even $9.99 is high for an ebook. $14 plus a few pennies is over the top. Will not pay that much money for a book that evaporates everytime your Nook decides you need to register again and wipes out all your books.

    1 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2013

    Loved it

    What a surprise. I love post apoc books and this was really good. I have basically read them all and suggest this one. It is thoughtful, well written, etc. Would write more but takes a long time on my Nook :)

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  • Posted April 15, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Great Read!

    Picture the world if you survived nuclear war. What would it be like to re-create society, to rebuild homes from refuse and nurse the soil to yield crops once more? That is what the survivors have endured to create the colony of Carthage.

    Hadrian Boone is one of the founding fathers of the colony, but he has fallen from grace. Once a teacher, he was removed from the position due to drunkenness and challenging the Governor resulting in a long list of prison stays. When Hadrian’s mentor Jonah Beck is found hanging in the library while it is burning, a piece of his journal missing, Hadrian vows to find the responsible party and bring him to justice.

    As he pieces together snippets of information from Jonah’s personal journal and a gang of young orphans, Hadrian is lead to the neighboring colony of exiles and learns there is a third colony across the great lake whose inhabitants are convicts involved in smuggling and a conspiracy that threatens not only the very existence of Carthage but also its inhabitants. With the help of policewoman Jori Waller and Emily an exiled founder of Carthage, Hadrian travels into the old world to stop the smugglers from bringing a dangerous shipment to Carthage and finally catch his friend’s killer.

    With “Ashes of the Earth,” Eliot Pattison brings us into a dystopian society still bound by class discrimination and corrupt officials. He takes the reader on a journey that is bound to make one wonder if they could survive in such conditions. His characters are complex and his writing masterful. Pattison has created another winner amongst his long list of successful novels. Definitely add this to your reading list; it is well worth the cost of the book.

    Reviewed by Jodi Ann Hanson for Suspense Magazine

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    Posted May 24, 2011

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