The third and final book in the chilling Mildred Wells series sees the revenant attempt to wreak her revenge on those she feels have wronged her. SPOILERS ahead if you have not read the previous two books!
Tim and Holly’s struggle against the evil Mildred has found national fame thanks to her murder of a cameraman. Meanwhile, Mildred has a new form of revenge: she murders Tim’s ex wife and abducts his daughters leading to psychological torment for him. However, her motives are mixed in this book as she wants another chance at motherhood as well as to see Tim suffer…
Mildred’s anger has been burning inside her like an acid for over a century (hence the apt title Anger Is An Acid). Her evil heart softens with the idea of mothering two girls but she is also exhausted by the constant anger which has driven her to unforgivable acts. Mildred no longer feels much satisfaction from the terror she creates but this does not stop her torturing Tim with fear.
We also have the new character of Andrew who was introduced in the last book. He is being haunted by his mother as well as the ghost of Mildred’s husband. Thomas Pike saved his son’s spirit in the first book but now wants to destroy Mildred for the pain she has caused.
Each book in the trilogy is very different. The Patience of A Dead Man had lots of spooky jump out of your skin moments while Dead Woman Scorned showed us Mildred’s perspective and violence. This third book contains more of a mix of the two. There are some heartstopping moments but also a deeper emotional side to Mildred, building on our understanding of her troubled life and death.
I thought Anger Is An Acid was a gripping conclusion to this remarkable trilogy. The ending kept the twists coming, and left me satisfied as it tied up the plot wonderfully.
Welcome to the final book tour for The Patience of a Deadman trilogy, by Michael Clark. Anger is Acid is the bone-chilling conclusion, and today I have an excerpt for you and a giveaway to enter!
Anger is Acid (The Patience of a Dead Man #3)
Publication Date: May 4, 2020
Genre: Horror/ Ghost Story
Mildred has control… Tim and Holly, realizing they are helpless, are grateful when a stranger knocks on their door – but can he help? Andrew Vaughn, a haunted man, is on-scene, hoping to lend a hand – against his will. Meanwhile, the “ghost story” is becoming national news and attracting attention that Tim can’t afford.
Holly can’t stay in the house any more and draws a line. Confidence is low, and pressure builds. Meanwhile, Mildred listens to almost everything they say. Is there any way around her anger? Or will they die in vain, as they desperately search for Tim’s daughters?
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With the doors locked, Tim and Holly exchanged concerns.
“Yes, I know it was her. I’m sure she has the girls too. You don’t have to tell me, Holly. I’m scared shitless. They could be…” He couldn’t bring himself to finish the sentence.
“Well, we can’t think that way yet. She left Sheila’s body behind. She would have left theirs too. I think they’re alive.” Holly had other fears, but she didn’t finish her thoughts out loud.
“How the hell did she know where they live? Amesbury is seventy miles from here!” Holly felt a chill climb her back as he finished his sentence.
“She seems to come and go from this house as she pleases, Tim. She knows this place as well as if not better than we do. I’ve told you a hundred times–I hate staying here!Please, let’s go to my place. Even if she knows where I live, I’ll feel a little better. At least I don’t think she’s ever been there, but this place…she could be anywhere. I don’t even want to think about it.”
“I can’t leave, Holly. As backward as it may sound, I need to see her. I’m afraid I’ll never see her again! Imagine that? And don’t forget that Thomas Pike had no problem finding your place when he dropped off the Simmons scrapbook. Remember?” Holly nodded, unhappy that Tim had a point.
“Oh, you’ll see her again, Tim. You can bet on that. At least once anyway. It won’t be a sneak attack either. She wants you to know she’s coming and probably wants you to die long and slow. She wants revenge. That’s what revenants do, remember? We just never thought that she’d go for the girls. And that–changes everything.” Holly’s sigh was heavy with dread as she stared blankly at the wall, defeated. There was an unintentional moment of silence.
“How the hell does she get in here?” Tim finally wondered aloud, rousing them both from their separate thoughts. “Does she have a fucking key or something? Secret entrance? The roof?”
“The turret. It’s got to be the turret.” Holly suddenly seemed extra awake and even afraid. She subconsciously looked up at the ceiling where the turret would be. The stairway to it was only two rooms away. They both rose to investigate, flicking the dining room light on along the way. Tim listened outside the door for a moment, then fetched his baseball bat from the kitchen before opening it.
They climbed the stairs slowly. Holly was relieved to find the turret was empty, but it left Tim with a lack of answers and a growing level of frustration. Mildred had decided to let them worry and wonder about the girls for at least an evening–the very first evening of their captivity. Was it by design, meant to heighten the anguish? Or was she busy looking for a place to hole them up?
The girls were trapped with the dead woman and most likely terrified. Tim wished he could trade places with them–they were too young for such terror. Tim rested the bat against the wall and tried the windows. There were eight of them ringing the octagonal room, and much to Tim’s surprise, one of them was unlocked.
“What the hell! I locked these– I’m sure I locked them.”
“Yes, but you don’t check them every night, Tim. All she had to do is get in here once during the day to get up here and unlock it. And look, your papers are all sitting right there.” Holly motioned to Tim’s box in the corner. “That’s how she knew where Sheila lived. Now we know–and it creeps me out—I can’t tell you how much.” Tim saw where the conversation was headed and changed the subject.
“I need to boobytrap this place. Get her right here in this room, and then set a trap, like a bear trap or…”
“You don’t think she’ll see a bear trap in the middle of the floor? That’s just going to piss her off, Tim. And you’re liable to hurt yourself with the damn thing. Same with knives or fire or whatever else you’re thinking.” Holly’s stress did all the talking.
“I wasn’t thinking about knives or fire, come on, give me a little bit of credit.” Tim lied about the knives. “I was thinking something along the lines of a warning system. Something to make her fall down the stairs. A bag of marbles—I don’t fucking know…” Holly giggled, then the giggle turned into laughter. Tim saw that she genuinely thought it was funny and was not making fun of him, so he joined in for a moment–yet the gravity of their problem hung in the room like a cloud of poison dust.
“How about a simple tripwire with a little bell on it?” Holly offered. “One at the bottom of the turret stairs, one in front of the sliding glass door in the breakfast area and one at the bottom of the bedroom stairs? We set it up every night. In the morning, unhook it, so we’re not tripping over it ourselves.” Tim looked up at her.
“That’s an idea. Better than we have now. And like you said—‘we’re gonna see her again.’ We have to. Oh God, I hope and pray she’s greedy and wants to see me again. But–” Tim got quiet and put his balled fist under his nose. Holly saw he was getting emotional.
“Honey, we’re doing all we can, let’s just–”
“But if she’s already done—if this is her revenge—and she’s never coming back, then she’s really good at it.” Tim’s last three words were nearly inaudible as he choked up, worried sick about his daughters. Holly hugged him, trying to hold back tears of her own.
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He just spent everything on a house in disrepair, but he didn’t know someone was waiting inside.
Tim Russell just put his last dollar on a handyman’s dream; a quaint but dilapidated farmhouse in New Hampshire. Newly single after a messy divorce, his plan is to live in the house as he restores it for resale. To his horror, as soon as the papers are signed and his work starts, ghosts begin to appear. A bone-white little boy. A woman covered in flies. Tim can’t afford to leave and lose it all, so he turns to his real estate agent Holly Burns to help him decide whether he has any shot at solving his haunted problem. Can they solve the mystery before he loses his investment…or maybe his life?
She’s back, and they’ll regret what they’ve done.
Mildred Wells had a miserable life that carried over to a lonesome death. In the end, they betrayed her – played her the fool. She was the last to know, but there’s still time to catch up. She’ll formulate her painful plan as they live their lives in blissful ignorance.
With no more family, only vengeance drives her; in fact, it’s all she has. She would have rather rested in peace, but for Mildred, dying isn’t so easy.
About the Author
Michael Clark was raised in New Hampshire and lived in the house The Patience of a Dead Man is based. The bats really circled the rafters of the barn all day long, and there really was a grove hidden in the forest. He now lives in Massachusetts with his wife Josi and his dog Bubba.
The Patience of a Dead Man, Dead Woman Scorned & Anger is an Acid are his first three novels.
Giveaway: The Patience of a Dead Man Trilogy (Print) US only or a print copy of book #1, Patience of a Dead
Man for International entries.
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