The More They Disappear by Jesse Donaldson takes us to the front lines of the battle against small-town drug abuse in an unnerving tale of addiction, loss, and the battle to overcome the darkest parts of ourselves (Available August 2, 2016).
When long-serving Kentucky sheriff Lew Mattock is murdered by a confused, drug-addicted teenager, chief deputy Harlan Dupee is tasked with solving the crime. But as Harlan soon discovers, his former boss wasn't exactly innocent.
The investigation throws Harlan headlong into the burgeoning OxyContin trade, from the slanted steps of trailer parks to the manicured porches of prominent citizens, from ATV trails and tobacco farms to riverboat casinos and country clubs.
As the evidence draws him closer to an unlikely suspect, Harlan comes to question whether the law can even right a wrong during the corrupt and violent years that followed the release of OxyContin.
Mary Jane Finley was late. She’d changed her outfit three times but nothing seemed to fit. It was the mirror’s fault, the way it reflected her body lumpen and plain. She had new curves, new skin—had for a while now—and no amount of makeup could bring back the face that had twice been Finley County’s Junior Miss Harvest. Those years, from twelve to fourteen, had been her best. After that her body ran its own course, and no diet, fast, or finger down the throat could help her regain the promise she’d shown. There always remained twenty pounds she couldn’t shed. After futilely changing her clothes one last time, Mary Jane scowled at the mirror and said, “Fuck you.”
She drove her red coupe past the house where her boyfriend, Mark, had lived before he left for college. She knew Mark was back in town, waiting by the window for that moment she drove by, and she resisted the urge to honk hello. The finished homes started to thin out as she rolled down the street at a steady twenty-five. In countless plots there lay only the expectation of a house—floor plans staked with wooden boards, electric boxes rising from the emptiness, scraggly seedlings of trees. Mary Jane parked in a deserted cul-de-sac next to the bones of a two-story and slipped on a backpack before hiking into the woods.
[Read the full excerpt from The More They Disappear...]