My review of Harbinger: Wake-Robin Ridge Book 3 by Marcia Meara



The Blurb

….he felt the wet slide of the dog’s burning hot tongue on his face, and the scrape of its razor sharp teeth against the top of his head. A white-hot agony of crushing pain followed, as the jaws began to close.”

The wine-red trillium that carpets the forests of the North Carolina Mountains is considered a welcome harbinger of spring—but not all such omens are happy ones. An Appalachian legend claims the Black Dog, or Ol’ Shuck, as he’s often called, is a harbinger of death. If you see him, you or someone you know is going to die.

But what happens when Ol’ Shuck starts coming for you in your dreams? Nightmares of epic proportions haunt the deacon of the Light of Grace Baptist Church, and bring terror into the lives of everyone around him. Even MacKenzie Cole and his adopted son, Rabbit, find themselves pulled into danger.

When Sheriff Raleigh Wardell asks Mac and Rabbit to help him solve a twenty-year-old cold case, Rabbit’s visions of a little girl lost set them on a path that soon collides with that of a desperate man being slowly driven mad by guilt.

As Rabbit’s gift of the Sight grows ever more powerful, his commitment to those who seek justice grows as well, even when their pleas come from beyond the grave.

 My Review

This is the third in the series of Marcia Meara  novels but can certainly be read as a standalone book. It’s a well-told story of good overcoming evil, of how all deeds have repercussions, of love, of family, of friendship, of manipulation, of how childhood can affect what we become as adults, of mystery and special talents, of traditions, of folklore. I think that covers all aspects of Harbinger: Wake-Robin Ridge Book 3 ; a book I thoroughly enjoyed.

I love this author’s style of writing; Marcia Meara is an exemplary storyteller, who paces the plot of the novel well but, every now and then, surprises the reader.

Told equally between an omniscient narrator and the first person point of view of Sarah, Robert’s (nicknamed Rabbit) adopted mother, the narrative runs smoothly. I did like the originality of this way of writing a story.

 Every character is rounded and easy to envisage and, throughout, the dialogue differentiates each of them. I particularly enjoyed the way the author has Rabbit, the protagonist, speaking; a quaint yet, typical young boy’s voice, expressing his view of the world around him, his thoughts on the other characters.

The author’s descriptions of the North Carolina Mountains, the houses and cabins give a wonderful sense of place. Not knowing anything about this area, it opened up a whole new aspect for me to imagine.

 This is a story that begins with a brilliant first hook; one that shocks. The uncovering of that incident unfolds in an unusual way. I have no hesitation in recommending this novel.



Marcia also has a web site: where she generously reviews books and posts interviews for authors

 Buying links:

Marcia Meara’s author page:


28 thoughts on “My review of Harbinger: Wake-Robin Ridge Book 3 by Marcia Meara

  1. I’ve only read the first book and was hesitant about reading your review of book 3 in case it spoiled book 2 for me! But, it didn’t. I’m looking forward to reading the next one. Like you, I know nothing about the North Carolina Mountains but Marcia really took me there in the first book.

    Liked by 1 person

      • I really enjoyed the first one, though there were some parts scarier than I usually like to read. Marcia promises me the next ones aren’t so dark so I’m really looking forward to meeting Rabbit in books two and three.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Rabbit brings his own light with him, no matter where he goes, and it shines on everyone he meets. He’ll take care of any darkness, Mary. 😀 That boy makes me laugh. And sometimes he makes me cry. But when he tells me his adventures, I’m always left feeling hopeful. 🙂


    • Thanks, Mary! If you read A Boy Named Rabbit, I hope you’ll enjoy it. Rabbit’s a very special little guy, and so much fun to write. Visiting with him again, along with Mac & Sarah, and crew, was like going home after a long absence. And those mountains do call to me. They are the oldest mountain chain on the earth, you know, and very special. 🙂 Hope you get to see them yourself, one day.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for such a great review, Judith! I really appreciate it. Harbinger was a lot of fun to write, in a shivery way, and I suppose if it has a theme, it would be “you can run, but you can’t hide.” Something I very much believe to be true. That day of reckoning rolls around, eventually. 🙂 Thanks again for reading and reviewing. So glad you enjoyed the book.


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