“J.D. Barker’s Forsaken is a remarkable debut, a gripping tale of suspense in the tradition of Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and John Saul. Truly the birth of a new master in the genre.”

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Book One of the Shadow Cove Saga

Inspired by Actual Events

Excerpt from the Journal of Clayton Stone – 1692
She was examined today without torture at Shadow Cove township on the charge of witchcraft. She said she was wholly innocent of the crime and has never in life renounced God. I watched as they brought her out. A poor, sickly thing, worn by her time behind the walls of her prison. Her bared feet and hands bound in leather, her clothing tattered to that of ruin. Despite such condition, her head was held high, her eyes meeting those of her accusers. Upon being stripped and examined, on her right side is found a bluish mark, much like a clover leaf; it was thrice pricked therein but she felt no pain and no blood flowed from the wound. She still refuses to provide her name so we remain unable to search baptismal records, nor has her family stepped forward to claim her as their own. We have no reason to believe she is anything but an orphaned child. I find myself unable to look at her directly in the moments preceding her trial. She is watching me though; with eyes of the deepest blue, she is watching me. Thad McAlister, Rise of the Witch

When horror author Thad McAlister began his latest novel, a tale rooted in the witch trials of centuries past, the words flowed effortlessly. The story poured forth, filling page after page with the most frightening character ever to crawl from his imagination. It was his greatest work, one that would guarantee him a position among the legends of the craft.

But was it really fiction?

He inadvertently opened a door, one that would soon jeopardize the lives of his family.

She wants to come back.

At home, his wife struggles to keep their family alive. Secretly wondering if she caused it all…a deal she made long ago. A deal with the Forsaken.


Hardcover ISBN 9780990694939
eBook ISBN 9780990694915
Paperback ISBN 9780990694908
Mass Market Paperback ISBN 9780990694922


Praise for Forsaken:

“Incredibly written, supremely creepy. I don’t say this lightly: J.D. Barker is a force to be reckoned with.”
Tosca Lee, NY Times Bestselling Author

“Do you hear that creaking sound? That’s a door opening, as a fantastic new artist enters the room. World… meet J.D. Barker. That’s Forsaken under his arm and you’re gonna wanna pay attention to every word..”
– Josh Malerman, Author of Bird Box and Black Mad Wheel

“Scary as hell!”
– Editorial Review, Horror After Dark

“Barker knows how to evoke chilling imagery and will have readers anxiously looking over their shoulders with each terrifying “clickity, click, click.”
Editorial Review, Library Journal

“Barker’s ambitious debut is aimed squarely at fans of classic horror. Witches, spells, miniature demons, and personal doubt give plenty to latch on to… the plot moves at a brisk pace… a promising start to a planned series.”
– Editorial Review, Publisher’s Weekly

“Barker is a master wordsmith.”
– Editorial Review,

“A talented writer with a delightfully devious mind!”
– International Bestselling Author, Jeffery Deaver

“Masterful storytelling.”
– Editorial Review, Bookish

“It is clear Barker is a name to watch in horror.”
– Editorial Review, The Horror Bookshelf

“A great stay-up-all-night spooky story.”
– Editorial Review, The Book’s The Thing

“J.D. Barker has conjured a modern cauldron of horrors based on historical fact.”
– Editorial Review, The Tomb of Dark Delights

“This book gave me chills!”
– Editorial Review, The Word Smithe

“WOW if there is one horror book that you need to read this year, then this is the one.”
– Editorial Review, Wyres World

“Eerie, creepy, and frightfully good. Watch out Stephen King…J.D. Barker is hot on the trail of horror writing and will most certainly give you a run for your money!”
– Editorial Review, Crime Book Junkie

“Harry Potter for adults. The imagery will haunt you.”
– Author, Jack Stevenson

“A horror book that grips you from the start. I grew up reading horror by the likes of Stephen King, Dean Koontz and James Herbert, to name but a few. J.D. Barker deserves to have his name up there with them.”
– Editorial Review, By The Letter

“Classic gothic horror at its best. A truly impressive debut.”
– Author, Joan Hall Hovey

“Five stars. Perfect.”
– Editorial Review, Confessions of a Reviewer

“Scary, exciting, fun in all the right ratios, Forsaken is the right kind of book for anyone who enjoys a racing heart and a pounding pulse.”
– #1 Bestselling Author, MichaelBrant Collins

“It’s a superlative read!”
– Author, Robin Spriggs

“Incredibly atmospheric and cinematic – it would make a fabulously creepy movie. .”
– Editorial Review, Lucy Literati

“FORSAKEN is one of the best first novels I’ve read in a long time. Well written, a compelling story line. Put J.D. Barker’s name down on your must read reminder on the fridge – highly recommended.”
– Author, Gene O’Neill

“Mr. Barker may have begun by following in the footsteps of such horror royalty as Stephen King, John Saul and Dean Koontz; but he has blazed a unique path of his own with FORSAKEN.”
– Editorial Review, Fresh Fiction

“This was hands down the best novel I’ve read this year. From the first page, to the very last. This novel had me in its hold. I couldn’t wait to turn the page, yet at the same time, I was terrified to. This book is littered with heart stopping OMG moments. Toward the end of the book, the last few chapters, I was on the edge of my seat. As if this book couldn’t get any better for me. It’s not just an awesome story, but it is beautifully written as well. The flow from the first word to the last is seamless. I just love this book. I can’t wait for the next book. Without a doubt, this book deserves five stars.”
– Editorial Review, Word Gurgle

“The plot is great. The action doesn’t slow down for a minute. I never really understood the term ‘Tension building up to a crescendo’ before, but now I do. The ending is brilliant.”
– Editorial Review, Cheryll is Writing

“Creepy, atmospheric, well written…this novel surprised me. I wasn’t expecting such a descriptive blend of horror, mystery, and suspense combined with history. I started reading Stephen King, Dean Koontz and John Saul when I was ten (a long time ago LOL). This book grabbed my attention immediately. I had to give it a try. And I am not disappointed. J.D. Barker has spectacular potential in the horror genre. I was hooked from page one. Barker intertwined past and present, a book within a book, a novelist writing about a novelist writing a horror story filled with history- and tying it all together. The creep factor had me chilled. Imagining that little hand in the daughter’s room knocking down the toys…OMG I used to imagine that as a child. To think of it being real, of some tiny monster there terrorizing the child…that was my first real shiver while reading the book but certainly not the last. If you love horror novels this is a must read.”
– Author, Roxanne Rhoads

“Magnificent read. The story exists on the land that straddles suspense, thriller, and good ol’ supernatural chill-fest. The term “page-turner” has become cliched to the point of lost meaning, yet with Forsaken, we are reminded where the phrase was born: between the pages of just such a book as this. Moving the story along at a rushing river’s clip, Barker braids two tales together in a dance between present and past. We begin getting the slightest feeling that the two might be more intertwined than we at first suspected, but are kept in delighted suspense until Barker lets us see. He is generous in a manner. The reader is given an omnipresent view of the world inside the covers, and this serves to build tension as we become invested in the characters, sometimes wishing to grab them by the shoulders and shake them to their good senses, other times wanting desperately to tell them what’s happening just outside their line of sight. All of these ingredients are combined in a clever and delicious story, one that reads fast and fun, and with just enough darkness laying over Barker’s land to make us wonder, to make us check over our shoulders one more time, to watch the shadows… they’re only shadows, right?”
 – Blogger,

“Perhaps the best measure of any book I read is how enthusiastic I grab the kindle, and reading this book, I looked forward to every moment I could power up. Forsaken is a unique story with two intertwined plotlines. A brief backstory of Witch trials from hundreds of years ago is linked to a horror writer who has just written his greatest piece of work yet. Only this book is different, and the price for putting it on paper and unleashing it onto the world puts his children and pregnant wife at risk. The author and his family in isolation from each other worked so well, as did so many other elements in ths story. Supernatural elements blended perfectly into the tangible world. Escalating conflict turned the volume up with each page, and it all built to a suprise ending and an unusual and perfectly blended shout-out to King’s Needful Things. Highly recommend this great accomplishment.”
– Author, Mark Matthews

Posted by J.D. Barker

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