Thursday, April 14, 2011

November mourns

November Mourns by Tom Piccirilli is one of the stranger books I've ever read.  It will probably percolate in my dreams for many nights to come.

Shad has just been released from prison (incarcerated for defending his sister's honor) to find that his sister has died under mysterious circumstances.  Shad believes she was murdered and wants to avenge her death.  But the residents of "the hollow" and "the hills" that surround them aren't really interested in helping him out. 

He encounters a dwarf witchy woman who seems to know everything he is thinking but answers all of his questions in a sideways manner.  He encounters a group of snake charmers that then set out to kill him.  (And almost succeed)  He sees the ghosts of his sister and mother.  He sees Jesus.  He sees what may or may not be the devil. 

In the end, he gives himself to the hills.  And we are left with no answers at all.  I'm not sure if Piccirilli chose to leave us with all these questions or if the story simply got to a point where he couldn't figure out how to wrap it up.  I won't lie.  I felt like the story just stopped.  Like I was missing a chapter at the end. 

Like one of the characters in the book, I wonder where the story went.


  1. Well, thanks for taking a chance on my novel. I hope it won't put you off from trying more of my work in the future.

  2. I'd like to clarify that I really did like the novel. I was very much sucked into the unusual circumstances. I just got to the end and felt like I didn't quite figure it all out. I wanted more. Wnating more is not necessarily a bad thing. I actually find myself wanting to read more of your work.