Blackthorn: A Gothic Thriller By Judy Nedry: Review/Giveaway

Oct 26, 2019 | 2019 Articles, Mysteryrat's Maze, Sandra Murphy

by Sandra Murphy

Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of Blackthorn, and a link to purchase it from Amazon.

As children, Sage and Ross Blackthorn witnessed a death that left them traumatized. As adults, the trauma manifested as reckless behavior and addiction. Although Sage has a successful career in New York, events lead her to go home, or at least back to where she grew up. Home is a word she doesn’t relate to anymore.

Her Gran is suffering from dementia. It’s only been two months since Sage visited, but in that time, Gran has deteriorated to the point of needing full-time care. Sage does not want that care to be up to her. If she can find a nice nursing home, sell the property, and make a run for New York, that will suit her just fine. thrilled

There’s a wait for a bed at the nursing home. It’s probably just as well because it will take a couple of weeks to sort through the unpaid bills, find out if there’s any money in the bank, decide if she really wants to go back to her job or find a new one, and to solve a few mysteries. One is Janice who takes care of Gran. Janice leaves a sandwich and apple in the raised garden every day. It disappears in the night, but Sage can’t see who took it. There are odd noises, but twice when she’s heard them, Sage was drunk – so were the noises real or a figment of a drunken mind?

Fighting to stay sober, deciding on a future for herself and for Gran, and most importantly, trying to figure out who she can trust, is apt to take up all of Sage’s time and energy. And when she thinks she’s starting to make progress, that’s when a killer comes for her.

Nedry also writes the Emma Golden mysteries (The Man Who Wasn’t There and The Difficult Sister) which were reviewed here. Blackthorn has a thriller’s action and a mystery’s plotting. Just as Sage doesn’t know who to believe, readers will be guessing as well. Not scary enough to make you want to sleep with the lights on, but spooky enough to warrant a night light. Blackthorn takes the “going home again” theme and turns it on its head.

Editor’s note: For those who might have a problem with this, a horse is killed in this story.

To enter to win a copy of Blackthorn, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “blackthorn,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen November 2, 2019. U.S. residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address (so if you win we can get the book sent right out to you), and if via comment please include your email address. You can read our privacy statement here if you like.

Check out other mystery articles, reviews, book giveaways & mystery short stories in our mystery section. And join our mystery Facebook group to keep up with everything mystery we post, and have a chance at some extra giveaways. Be sure to check out our new mystery podcast too with mystery short stories, and first chapters read by local actors. The last 3 episodes include black cats and ghosts and are perfect for Halloween listening!

You can use this link to purchase the book on Amazon. If you have ad blocker on you may not see the link:

Opens to author website

Sandra Murphy lives in the shadow of the Arch in St. Louis Missouri. She writes about eco-friendly topics, pets and wildlife for magazines and reviews mysteries and thrillers for KRL. A collection of her short stories, published by Untreed Reads, From Hay to Eternity: Ten Tales of Crime and Deception can be found at all the usual outlets. Each one is a little weird and all have a twist you won’t see coming.

Disclosure: This post contains links to an affiliate program, for which we receive a few cents if you make purchases using those links. KRL also receives free copies of most of the books that it reviews, that are provided in exchange for an honest review of the book.


  1. Blackthorn is intriguing and Gothic is fantastic. The story and setting is wonderful. Thanks.

  2. Sounds interesting. Count me in !

  3. I really like Gothic thrillers. Would really like to read.

  4. Sounds amazing and what a neat setting. Thank you for the chance

  5. Definitely putting this on my to read list!

  6. We have a winner!


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