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Ashes of the Earth

A Mystery of Post-Apocalyptic America

List Price: $15.95

April 10, 2012 | Paperback | 6 x 9, 400 pages | ISBN 9781582438160
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Thirty years after global holocaust, the colony of Carthage still struggles to build its new world. While steam engines and other early industrial technology have empowered its economy, the fragile society is undermined by secret crimes, rifts between generations, government censorship, and a legacy of casting out those who suffer from radiation sickness.

Embittered survivor Hadrian Boone—once a revered colony founder—has been hounded by despair and the ghosts of his past into a life of drunkenness and frequent imprisonment for challenging the governor’s tyranny. But when a gentle old man, the colony’s leading scientist, is murdered, Hadrian glimpses chilling secrets behind the killing that could destroy the colony. Realizing that he may be the only one able to expose the truth, Hadrian begins a desperate quest through the underbelly of the colony into the wrenching camps of the outcasts, escorted by a young policewoman who struggles to cope with the physical and emotional remnants of the prior world. Ultimately Hadrian’s journey becomes one of self–discovery, and to find justice his greatest challenge is navigating the tortuous path of the human spirit in a world that has been forever fractured.

About Eliot Pattison

Eliot Pattison is the author of the Inspector Shan series, which includes The Skull Mantra, winner of an Edgar Award and finalist for the Gold Dagger. He is also the author of the the Bone Rattler series, featuring Scotsman Duncan McCallum. Pattison resides in rural Pennsylvania with his wife, son, three horses, and three dogs on a colonial-era farm. Find out more at

Praise for Ashes of the Earth

"With a vital cast of villains and heroes, a vividly grim setting, and inventive, hair–raising action, ingenious mystery–writer–of–conscience Pattison explores the psychological toll of mass destruction and the need to salvage ideas and values, rather than material riches, so that a just society can rise from the ashes." —Booklist (starred)

"Brilliant . . . Pattison blends the bleakness of The Road with a well–crafted whodunit plot for another winner." —Publishers Weekly (starred)

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