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Reviewed by Manik Chaturmutha for Readers' Favorite
My Brother’s Keeper is the first book in the two-book Pale Woods Mystery series by Courtnee Turner Hoyle. The novel is set in a small country town called Erwin in Tennessee. Seventeen-year-old Jerrod Miller is constantly haunted by his past. He feels guilt over his actions that resulted in devastating consequences. But that was almost a year ago. And now, he is practically shunned by his friends and family and is devastated by the loss of his best friend. His little sister, Ella, is the only one who sympathizes with him. But Jerrod must now complete the unfinished quest that he set out on last year and then failed at miserably. Will he succeed this time, and what secret is Ella so conspicuously hiding?
My Brother’s Keeper is very layered. It does not overwhelm the reader by unfolding all the secrets at once. Hoyle peels back the layers one by one and keeps the reader engaged in the mystery. There are several plot twists that readers would probably not see coming, but it will hit them with great force when they least expect it. Jerrod, as a narrator, is unreliable, and this gives readers the freedom to make their own predictions. Hoyle wants readers to have the whole picture before she reveals what happened the year before that destroyed Jerrod’s entire family. The book manages to hook readers till the very end for the great reveal. The epilogue gives a nod to the possible premise of the second book in the series as it raises a lot of questions in the mind of the reader. My Brother’s Keeper is a very well-written supernatural mystery. Courtnee Turner Hoyle compels you to hang on to her every word as she takes you on a bumpy ride.