Length: 219 Pages
Publisher: Gypsy Press
Release date: August 29, 2013
Synopsis: Detective Mark Baker is an honest cop and an all-around good guy. After a chaotic night, Mark starts to reexamine his role in the system he no longer believes in.
That’s when an ominous letter arrives from his estranged sister.
She sounds distraught, suicidal. Her words send him on a mission to a small midwestern town, uncertain if he’ll find her dead or alive.
Valley Mill is a quiet little utopia. Everyone gets along. There’s zero crime. On the outside, it’s exactly what Mark thinks society should be.
But what Mark discovers behind the pristine fences and closed doors is far worse than anything he could have imagined. And he learns very quickly to be careful what you wish for…
Review copy provided in exchange for an honest review
This was my third visit to the world of Kelli Owen. The story inside the pages of White Picket Prisons was fantastic. The scenes, especially the recalling of Mark’s marriage as it destructs, was amazing. An emotional rollercoaster that left me sad, angry and hurt. I could feel my chest tighten while Kelli slung the words like knives. Mark was full of surprises, giving a realness and solidity to him. My only complaint was the multiple times Mark complained about his job, but otherwise I loved this character. But, it wasn’t until much later I would understand the need for his strong opinions and conviction.
When Mark finally finds his sister and discovers the mysteries of Valley Mill, it was heart stopping. The shock I felt was almost too much, and I’ve read some crazy shit as a horror fan. White Picket Prisons is a book that will make you question what is just and fair. How a criminal should be dealt with. How we judge others for their actions and how long a person should have to pay for their offenses. The ending was another twist I didn’t see coming and it caught me off guard. I think this is the best piece of work I’ve had the pleasure of reading from Kelli Owen and it will not be the last. I’ll be looking forward to reading her work, and I hope it is soon!
Kelli Owen, biography
Kelli Owen is the author of more than a dozen books–her fiction spanning from thriller and psychological horror, to an occasional bloodbath, and the even rarer happy ending. She was an editor and reviewer for over a decade, and has attended countless writing conventions, participated on dozens of panels, and spoken at the CIA Headquarters in Langley, VA regarding both her writing and the field in general. Born and raised in Wisconsin, she now lives in Destination, Pennsylvania. For more information, please visit her website at kelliowen.com