Reviewer Michelle Kaye Malsbury:
Michelle was born in Champaign, IL. Currently, she resides in Asheville, NC
and is in her second year of doctoral studies at Nova Southeastern
University in Ft. Lauderdale with specialization/concentration in
conflict resolution and peace studies. She has over six hundred
articles published on the web and one book published thus far with
many more in the wings. Hobbies include; reading, writing, music, and
playing with her Australian Cattle Dog, Abu.
Author: Steven Spellman, Author
Publisher: World Castle Publishing
Steven Spellman, author of The Pruning, is what I would call the accidental writer. (2015, p.185) He was educated in the area of computer science. Steven fell into writing after an accident left him disabled. Spellman says he always got accolades for his writing even to the point of being cast as a plagiarist, but never considered it as a career until after his accident. He and his family live in North Carolina.
This novel takes place in a fictional town called Newfield located in North Carolina. One of the lead characters is a young outcast by the name of Leslie Colbert who works for the First National Bank of North Carolina. She is oddly clad in wigs, gloves, and long sleeves as a regular dress which makes her unpopular with the rest of the bank crew until she meets another strange fellow named Kyle.
Kyle manages all of the tasks that the managers ought to have done for themselves, like employee reviews. Leslie knows this about Kyle and this impresses him. In preparation for a big meeting these two meet in the elevator and to the degree that two oddballs can they hit it off. Ms. Beaman heads the meeting and is known for being an icy person with liquid nitrogen flowing in her veins that is until today! Just as the meeting ends Ms. Beaman explodes into flames as the employees who loathe her watch. Nobody moves a muscle to help, but curiously watches in horror. The bank branch is closed and some of the people are moved to other locations across town while others are let go.
As this book moves forward more and more unusual things happen. These situations seem inexplicable and sinister. The one commonality is Leslie. She appears to be at the crux of most of these crazy circumstances. What has she to hide? What is her secret?
Kyle obtained some family money from a ranch his grandmother left him in Montana. With the funds from the sale he purchases a home in Newfield. Leslie eventually moves in with him because both of them end up losing their jobs. The dynamics of this relationship are always changing.
Kyle and Leslie become a couple of sorts and do some couple things, but neither confide much about their selves to the other. Kyle feels ill-at-ease at times with Leslie and he is unable to articulate exactly why. He tried to include her in some conversations and activities with his friends which do not turn out exactly as he had hoped.