When fourteen year-old Jackson’s life is uprooted, he finds his new hometown, idyllic Atavus Falls, under attack by something not very easily explained. The locals choose to call it a rabid bear or a mountain lion, but as the monster closes in on Jackson and his family, the traumatized community comes to find that their killer is actually the product of the mangled sociological experiment of an unhinged psychologist attempting to prove that language is a contagion, a human virus infecting us all.

The fates of Jackson and the killer prove to be entwined at the rootmost level, and at its unnerving conclusion, the tale of Atavus Falls shows us that sometimes a monster lives in the soul of a child… and sometimes humanity can be seen reflected in the eyes of a monster.

Inspired as much by Faulkner and Shelly as King, and told in the myriad voices of the community, this story lives somewhere between genre fiction and upmarket literature.


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