AT THE RIVER’S EDGE
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Sunset Peak, North Carolina is cursed by murder and captivated by moonshine money.
The unsolved shooting death of Mayor Hank Richards has a five-year curse hovering over the historic mountain community. Townspeople look over their shoulders in fear as neighbor accuses neighbor.
Rumors of buried moonshine money captivate those seeking unearned riches, but haunt Emily Edwards, the strong-willed granddaughter of the purported moonshiner.
Shortly following the murder of Mayor Richards, James Wolsey returns after college to help his mom manage the family’s hardware business. James and Emily are traveling diverse paths when they meet, but quickly align on a common course. If not for obsessed treasure hunters convinced Emily possesses a map, it seems their future together is promising.
The couple’s attempt to dispel rumors of buried treasure leads them to the gravesite of Emily’s ancestor beside the New River. What they uncover at the river’s edge propels them into the path of the mayor’s killer, and unleashes a chain of chilling events that forever changes Sunset Peak.
Mayor Richards’ murder will not be the last in the previously peaceful town.
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Out for an evening walk, Jack Fowler, two years back from a tour in Afghanistan with U.S. Army Special Forces, follows his nose to a body in an abandoned building. The badly decomposed male corpse is unable to be identified. Crime scene investigators can only determine that a single gunshot to the chest was the cause of death.
Given the density of meth labs and drug dealers in the nearby housing project of South Mill, it’s assumed drugs played a role in the killing–that is, until a second body is discovered in a similar condition. Both bodies lacked fingerprints, teeth, or other identifiable features, and both are found in abandoned buildings along Butcher Road.
A typed note found in the pocket of the second victim entangles the Army veteran in the investigation and puts him on a collision course with the killer.