Shadows of Pecan Hollow – #DebutNovel @CaroFrostWrites @NetGalley @williammorrowbooks

I received this book complements of NetGalley and the publisher, William Morrow and Custom House.

The blurb for this book drew me in and it was promoted as “Paper Moon meets Badlands.” I have to add my own spin on that. To me, it was more like “Where The Crawdads Sing” meets John Steinbeck.

I’ve read a lot of books this year and this one is landing at the top of my “best books” ever list! I don’t think I’ve met such horribly flawed characters.

A baby girl without a name, unwanted, discarded at birth like a piece of garbage, who never knows acceptance or love through the many foster homes is the main character. “The policeman who had found her as an infant had supposedly named her Katherine, but the only time she heard her name spoken was when a teacher called roll or a social worker handed her off to a new foster family.

At thirteen, she ran. She has one tiny piece of paper that tells her of an aunt who lives in Pecan Hollow and that’s where she blindly heads. Starving, she steals food from a gas station, then attempts to steal a bag of food from a Mustang parked outside when she gets caught. Instead of Manny turning her over to the authorities, he takes her in. She struggles when he asks her name and finally tells him it’s Kit. He feeds her. He grooms her for his wants and needs. Like in Paper Moon, she distracts the victims while Manny steals. She finally knows what it feels like to be loved, wanted, and useful.

But Manny’s petty theft escapades soon escalate to more and they became known as the Texaco Twosome for the string of armed robberies across the state. As Kit grows and develops into a teenager, her infatuation for Manny grows. He has not made any sexual advances toward her, and that is his one redeeming quality.

That eventually changes and Kit gets pregnant. Manny insists on an abortion. I don’t want to reveal too much about this story, but Manny gets caught in an armed robbery while Kit escapes. She arrives in Pecan Hollow at her aunt’s house with nothing but a baby inside her. It’s here she puts down roots.

Kit is tough. And her daughter, Charlie, refers to her mom as “bat-shit crazy.” Kit cannot feel pain. She only knows she is wounded when blood flows. But the pain that rests in her heart makes up for the lack of physical pain.

This story is well-written, gripping and I absolutely devoured it. The plot twists and thriller ending left me reeling. Kudos to this author for such a tremendous debut novel. While Caroline Frost is a new author to me, I can promise I will be reading everything she writes! She’s that good!

The book is set for release in February, 2022 but is available now for pre-order.

I might add that this author doesn’t have a lot of followers on Twitter, but seems to really appreciate each one, so you might consider following her.

Caroline Frost on Twitter

32 thoughts on “Shadows of Pecan Hollow – #DebutNovel @CaroFrostWrites @NetGalley @williammorrowbooks

  1. Sounds like it’s the three Ps: painful, powerful, and poignant. That’s a winning combination. Kudos to her. Thanks for your passionate review. (Another P, I suppose we should add to that list. 🙂 )

    Liked by 1 person

  2. An interesting review, Jan. This story really intrigues me. I’m always searching for a book with the depth of Where the Crawdads Sing. I’ll get it when it comes out. Hopefully, it won’t be too expensive. Caroline Frost sounds like a very talented author to watch. This is just her debut. I wonder what her others will be like. Interesting, Sister.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Exactly, sister. I will be watching for more from this author for sure and I’m not sure if this is a standalone or book 1 of a series. Nothing mentions a series. It’s such a GREAT story!! Hard to read at times, but I had to know what happened to this poor girl. Thank you for stopping by! Love you!


    1. It was a difficult story, Jacqui, but I will say it came to a satisfying ending that left me with hope for this character. I thought the “can’t feel pain” aspect was something very different and unique. It’s a really good story!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I’d say it’s in the top two best books of the year for me, Mae. The characters are so flawed and there seems no hope for redemption, but when it comes, the intensity is off the charts! Thanks for stopping by!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. It is, at times, a hard read, but I couldn’t stop. I had to know what happened to these people. I can’t even imagine how the author came up with this. It had to be channeled. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment, Gwen!


    1. The cover was what drew me to the story to start with. And when I read it was Ms. Frost’s debut novel AND William Morrow had picked it up, I knew it had to be good and it was! Thanks for leaving a comment!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow! Jan, this is a fantastic review! I can feel the energy and rush of the book through your thoughts here! I love both Paper Moon and Badlands as well as Steinback’s books whilst Where The Crawdads Sing is still on my books to read. With your resounding endorsement here is a book I must read! Glad you got hold of such a great read through NetGalley! Many thanks for such a great share. Wishing you a lovely rest of the week. x

    Liked by 1 person

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