South Toward Horn

Wes Dannreuther

Publisher: AMZ Pro Hub Pages: 245 Price: (paperback) $16.99 ISBN: 9781961749832 Reviewed: March, 2024 Author Website: Visit »

In Wes Dannreuther’s novel, a young man returns home from traveling to find himself in circumstances that ultimately lead to clues about his father’s death.

Jimmy O’Connor returns to work at the Gulf Coast shipyard, which he left for an adventure at sea, to discover that some of his co-workers aren’t exactly welcoming – particularly the supervisor’s nephew Charlie.

As Jimmy catches up with his mother, she gives him the leather journal Jimmy’s father, Jack, took with him on his journey down the Mississippi River and to Horn Island – a barrier island and designated Wilderness Area in the Gulf Islands National Seashore. Jack falls in love with the area and takes a job as a park ranger, but shortly after Jimmy is born, Jack drowns under mysterious circumstances.

Jimmy carries the journal with him on a trip with a high school friend that also involves a boat and Horn Island. Like his father, Jimmy encounters trouble on the island. Unfortunately, Jack’s journal ends before it reveals who might have wanted to kill him and why. Motivated partly by recent events at the shipyard and hopeful of finding answers about his father, Jimmy searches for Jack’s old friend, whose story connects many dots for Jimmy.

This is an interesting, well-told tale, written in a third-person point of view and informed by factual details about the area which lend the story authenticity. The juxtaposition of father and son makes for an engaging and colorful read. Additionally, the alternating chapters of Jimmy’s current story and his father’s story (as shared in the journal) offer a nice change of pace while simultaneously filling in historical details that might otherwise be missed.

Overall, the novel is likely to appeal to a wide audience—especially those interested in environmental protection and preservation, the quandaries surrounding it, and life in the South.

Also available in hardcover, ebook and audio book.

Author's Current Residence
Gulf Breeze, Florida
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