The Clearing

The Clearing

4.0 5
by Dan Newman
     
 

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Some moments linger forever. Some curses can’t be broken. Some crimes refuse to stay buried.

With the eerie thrills of Dean Koontz, Dan Newman’s seething suspense brings a young man back to St. Lucia, where he grew up, and where his guilt for the part he played in a murder continues to haunt.

Now, thirty years later, Nate responds to his

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Overview

Some moments linger forever. Some curses can’t be broken. Some crimes refuse to stay buried.

With the eerie thrills of Dean Koontz, Dan Newman’s seething suspense brings a young man back to St. Lucia, where he grew up, and where his guilt for the part he played in a murder continues to haunt.

Now, thirty years later, Nate responds to his father’s suicide with a trip back to St. Lucia, the land where he was raised as an outsider, tolerated but not accepted. As a boy he ventured out to the plantation of Ti Fenwe with three others—weak-willed Pip, and cousins Richard and Tristan. Surrounded on all sides by dense jungle, the boys explore, their only rule to be back in the house before nightfall. Because at Ti Fenwe, something ancient stalks the jungle, its reputation more horrifying than any of the boys can comprehend.

But it’s a very real enemy who changes the boys forever, and snuffs out a life. Decades later, Nate comes back to finally gain a measure of peace over his role in the killing, and to uncover the deadly secrets of St. Lucia once and for all.

"Told in lush, hypnotic prose that perfectly mirrors its mysterious Caribbean landscape, THE CLEARING is one man's quest for the brutal truth at the heart of his deadly self-deception...An intoxicating, important debut."—Laura Benedict, author of ISABELLA MOON and DEVIL’S OVEN

"THE CLEARING is a dark and atmospheric psychological thriller, full of intrigue, terror and superstition, which examines our deep fear of the unknown."—GUMSHOE REVIEWS

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
04/18/2016
Nate Mason, the hero of Newman's tepid debut, returns to the Caribbean island of St. Lucia, which he left in 1976 after an adventuresome outing with three friends turned deadly. Scenes from Nate's boyhood reveal that Nate, the son of a Canadian development worker, and Pip, the son of a Dutch diplomat, were the outsiders in a quartet that included Tristan, the son of wealthy Vincent De Villers, and Tristan's cousin Richard, who died on that long-ago outing. Back on St. Lucia after 30 years away, Nate connects with island journalist Smiley Edwin, who's compiled a dossier for him on Richard's death. Nate's return brings back memories of tales of the Bolom, a legendary island bogeyman, and also prompts someone to physically attack him. Gradually, the link between Richard's death and the fates of the other friends becomes clear. Newman's tale of human arrogance and supernatural forces is too insipid to inspire much dread or interest. (Apr.)
From the Publisher
"Told in lush, hypnotic prose that perfectly mirrors its mysterious Caribbean landscape, The Clearing is one man's quest for the brutal truth at the heart of his deadly self-deception. Throughout, Dan Newman keeps the lines of suspense tense and razor-sharp. An intoxicating, important debut." -Laura Benedict, author of Isabella Moon and Devil's Oven

"THE CLEARING is a dark and atmospheric psychological thriller, full of intrigue, terror and superstition, which examines our deep fear of the unknown."—GUMSHOE REVIEWS

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781909223523
Publisher:
Watkins Media
Publication date:
10/29/2013
Pages:
336
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author

Dan Newman counts his having been raised "in-transit" around the globe as his most valuable education - despite a Masters degree in Journalism. The son of a globe-trotting international development worker, Dan grew up in St. Lucia, Lesotho, Swaziland, England, Canada, and Australia. Ask him where he comes from and you'll get a puzzled look, but it's left a love of travel, writing and far-flung places. He now lives with his wife and son just outside of Toronto, Canada.

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The Clearing 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A gripping story from start to finish!  I was definitely drawn in by the lush description of life on St. Lucia and kept turning the page because of the intricate story line.  Also, the author kept ending chapters on a cliff-hanger and then I had to keep reading and find out what was going to happen!
Amys_Bookshelf_Reviews 16 days ago
Terrifying and suspenseful This book grabbed me from the very start. I love a book that catches the reader's attention and never lets it go. I read this book until I finished it, and then I was disappointed that it was over. Yes, it's that kind of book. Newman is an incredible storyteller, and telling the tale of Nate Mason, as he is in the present and what happened in the past as the two seemed joined together, is incredible. His band of childhood friends are not the same as they were because of that one fateful moment. Ahh, and they are in paradise, where there's a cure for everything.
Bluenose-Wanderer More than 1 year ago
I may sound like a broken record but I wish writers edited their texts or had someone who knows what they’re doing do so. This story jumps from the narrator’s past as a child on the Caribbean Island of St Lucia to his adult self’s recent past in the US to the present in which he has returned to his ghosts on the Island. The story begins with 3 boys looking at the body of a fourth lying by a body of water. It jumps to the death of the narrator’s own son and then has him return to the island to rehash ghosts of the past. The story jumps in nightmare fashion from the past to the present seeming to grudgingly give up its details. The story draws on the influence of rich island families, local voodoo, and superstition. The author keeps the reader in the dark as to the exact details of the murder at the centre of this story until the very end.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really enjoyed this book. It hooked me from the first page and kept me wanting to get to the next chapter and then the next chapter.
tpolen More than 1 year ago
Have you ever met a person who was trying to make a point but they just kept talking in circles? That's how I felt about this book. The first few pages of The Clearing were shocking and intense - a great start. But for me, the story lost its momentum after it flashed back to present day and never seemed to regain that same energy. I wanted to know what happened to the boy who was killed in the jungle, but had it figured out before getting halfway through the book. The description says the boys blamed the death on a mythical monster and no one believed them, but that's not what happened in the story. They never talked to anyone about what happened and how the boy was killed was the secret Nate had carried for so long. A little misleading. The motive for the murder was obvious, but it never seemed to ring true for me. Without giving anything away, maybe a little more information about the character relationships and their background would have helped. The author's descriptions of St. Lucia portrayed a beautiful tropical setting, but I felt as if they sometimes overshadowed what was happening in the story. I enjoyed the interactions between the boys when they were younger and thought the author captured the mischievousness and dynamics of that age group very accurately. Nate had also experienced tremendous loss in his adult life and his emotions were portrayed quite well. Overall, I liked this book, but maybe if the description had been more accurate, I would have had different expectations before reading it. This review was based on a digital ARC from the publisher by NetGalley.