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Spilled Blood: A Novel by Brian Freeman
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Spilled Blood: A Novel

by Brian Freeman

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Screw you, Garrison Keillor. We know Minnesota is a murderous place. We know because Brian Freeman tells us so.

Spilled Blood is a one-off, not among either of his on-going series. Joe Barrett, the reader of this and other Freeman books however is absolutely fantastic with his Minnesota accent. It adds a measure of authenticity that many similar books lack.

The story itself involves a blood feud between two towns, a Romeo-and-Juliet tragic love affair, teenage love triangles (or quadrangles actually). An evil company and employed muscle round out the colorful cast of characters. Well, there is also the father of the girl initially accused of murder. A lawyer by trade, Chris knows he must get to the bottom of the pretty daughter of the owner of an evil GMO company before his daughter hangs for it.

The misdirection is good, the actual murderous characters (there are multiple) aren't anyone you'd think are involved. I'm not quite sure why he chose to use to use a contract lawyer as the primary character and not put this on his marquis series, Jonathon Stride's shoulders, but it works just fine. ( )
1 vote JeffV | Feb 16, 2018 |
Spilled Blood by Brian Freeman
4 Stars

From the Book:
On a March night outside the river town of Barron, Minnesota, three teenage girls gather in a ghost town to play a terrifying game of Russian roulette.

By morning, one girl will be dead, and another in jail. Olivia Hawk claims she didn't pull the trigger on Ashlynn Steele, but no one believes her.

Olivia's best hope is her estranged father, an attorney from the city, who she barely knows anymore. And if he's going to prove Olivia's innocence, he's going to have to learn everything about her public--and private--life, however much she might like to keep hidden.

My Thoughts:
The story is build around the bitter, long standing dislike that two neighboring towns have for one another over a failed lawsuit. The feud has been taken up by teenagers in the two towns and has escalated into vandalism. Now someone has been murdered.

Spilled Blood is a mystery keeping you guessing until the end. The book was a welcomed and pleasant surprise….as the reviews for it were all over the board. I found the characters to be extremely well developed, making this a truly character driven story as well as a well written mystery. There are lots of red herrings thrown in and I wasn't completely sure who the "bad" guy was…and that’s what I really like to have happen in a book. ( )
  Carol420 | Mar 15, 2017 |
Another quality read by Brian Freeman. Great storytelling, and character development. A few Res Herrings. Good pace. I just wish the end was a bit more developed. ( )
  Djupstrom | Feb 24, 2017 |
SPILLED BLOOD would be classified as a thriller. I liked the story, but it didn’t thrill me.

There are a lot of lawyers in this book. One of them, Chris, is divorced from the mother of his teenaged child, Olivia. His ex-wife, Hannah, calls him to the small town where she and Olivia live because Olivia has been arrested for murder. For the rest of the book, Chris investigates who else may have committed the murder. I must have missed what “spilled blood” has to do with this story. But Brian Freeman chose those words for his title, so they must be in there someplace.

Others were thrilled by SPILLED BLOOD. So maybe you should listen to them and not me. But I think much of the story is predictable. Don’t worry about the final solution, though; it’s a surprise, although the very end isn’t. ( )
  techeditor | Sep 29, 2016 |
My first book by Brian Freeman, and within just a few pages I had decided that he had given himself an incredibly difficult task. My impression from the Prologue was that a young lady had performed an exceptionally unpleasant murder, the phraseology of her words and her repellent attitude towards the victim making me dislike her intensely. That was the author’s intention, and he then set about creating and explaining a whole range of conspiracies which had influenced that opening.
Lawyer Chris Hawk, successful in the city, comes home to Minnesota to defend his estranged daughter, Olivia, accused of the murder of Ashlynn Steel, daughter of the local successful businessman. There are entrenched attitudes between the two local towns of Barron and St. Croix, leading to many confrontations.
There is, however, a great deal more going on.
Who is the mysterious figure of Aquarius who is leaving messages for various different people? What are his motives? Just what hold does Kirk Watson have over so many that they are all in fear of him, especially his younger and much weaker brother Lenny?
Gradually the author reveals the secrets held within the town, and some of the revelations do come as great surprises. He builds the tension to an explosive ending, one which is written with great pace and is very exciting.
My first by Brian Freeman, but there will be more.
( )
  Alan1946 | Jun 25, 2016 |
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The two Minnesota towns couldn't be more different: in affluent Barron, a powerful and secretive scientific research corporation enriches its residents, while downriver in blue-collar St. Croix, victims of that company's carcinogenic waste struggle to survive. The bad blood between the communities escalates into open warfare when the beautiful Ashlynn, daughter of the corporation's president, is found shot dead--and a St. Croix girl, Olivia Hawk, is accused of the crime. Olivia's father, Christopher, a Minneapolis lawyer, comes to defend his daughter and uncovers some ugly truths that endanger the residents of both towns.… (more)

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