Afraid by Jack Kilborn

Afraid by Jack Kilborn, $4.99 Kindle edition.

Joe Konrath (aka Jack Kilborn, aka J.A. Konrath) is a kind of folk hero to struggling authors everywhere. His blog, A Newbie’s Guide To Publishing, outlines his success as a self-published novelist, and encourages others to follow a similar path. He makes a compelling argument for DIY book publishing, and the demise of the industry’s traditional New York publishing houses. Your mileage may vary, of course, when it comes to self-publishing (in fact, your mileage will likely be that of a Hummer with low tire pressure and the AC blasting) but Konrath gives self-pubbed authors hope. If he can do it, well, so can you!

Well, you won’t unless you can write with Konrath’s skill and precision. Afraid is a taut, tight thriller, packed with harrowing scenes of genuine suspense and terror. His nefarious Red Ops, a band of killers turned soldiers via brain implants, are a fearsome bunch, indeed. Afraid begins with a sequence of terrifying scenes, and ends as a tale about family bonds and redemption for past sins. It’s a damn fine novel, which is what all writers—self-pubbed or not—need to create in order to succeed.

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