Author: Robert Raker
Publisher: Wattle Publishing
When a series of child abductions and murders disrupt the life of an economically blighted community, the consequences have far-reaching implications. The brutal crimes take a different toll on a disparate group of
individuals; the scuba diver who retrieves the children’s bodies; the
disfigured cellist who thinks he knows who’s responsible; the undercover federal agent; and the mother of one of the victim’s. United in a situation not
of their choosing, they are forced to take a deep, introspective look into
their intersected, yet isolated lives.
Entropy, an elegiac crime novel whose climax reveals its bleakly beautiful pattern.
three short excerpts (around 250 words and PG 13 or below please)
The bloated, distended corpses of the people whose shortened lives I had retrieved from the water were clearly visible in the immature patterns of condensation that evaporated gradually on the mirror.
I just sat there. Looking closely at the gun, I cocked the trigger back and forth repeatedly, like a curious child studying the physics of a toy, wanting to grasp the technical aspects of it, what made certain parts of it function and react the way that it did when it was used.
I glanced up at the cracked face of the clock above her dresser. She would be leaving for the lawyer’s office soon. After that I would need to catch the next bus to the
How did we get here?
We were once such a happy family but now I am left alone with only my memories as a comfort to the love we once shared and the child we had borne.
A thermodynamic quantity representing the unavailability of a
system’s thermal energy for conversion into mechanical work,
Lack of order or predictability; gradual decline into disorder.”
Early one dreary, cold morning I arrived at a port in Providence on an oil barge. As I unloaded my equipment onto the docks and prepared to catch a ride, a petroleum worker on another boat cupped his hands over his mouth, outstretched his arms and signalled for me to come over. There was something in the water. Leaving most of my gear left behind I walked tentatively with another worker to the end of the dock, and discovered what appeared to be a body stuck in a drift a few feet below the surface of the water. The torso tapped against the wooden posts that were secured to the inlet floor some ten to fifteen feet from where I stood. We waited for almost an hour for the police to arrive, and I was eventually asked to go into the water because the police diver, who was on call for the area, could not be located. Travel restrictions had also been initiated, as a cold front was moving through, covering most of the East Coast in a dense blanket of sleet and freezing rain.
It wasn’t something that I wanted to do, but I had the most detailed training; more inclusive than any of the others on scene, even though some of them were nearly twenty years older than me. It was a mere matter of circumstance or, if you believed in it, fate. I geared up and through the stinging rain listened to the officer on scene relaying messages from a dispatcher speaking to him on his radio on how to proceed once I had penetrated the water: what to initially look for surrounding the body that might determine an accidental death or a homicide; and how not to compromise the integrity of the forensic scene. The coroner would later determine an exact cause of death after the body was removed, and photographs. of the scene and surrounding areas had already been taken. They were requesting that we all remained after I came out of the water, because we were all considered to be material witnesses. As I wasn’t going in very deep, I decided to utilize a snorkel on the surface and hold my breath when I had to. As I made my final preparations, I couldn’t force any spittle from my mouth to clean the inside of the mask. My chest tightened.
a degree in Journalism from the University of Pittsburgh. He currently resides
in Philadelphia where he enjoys art, music, literature and live theater. He is
currently working on his next novel.
Wattle Publishing is an independent publisher. We publish fiction,
non-fiction and poetry. www.wattlepublishing.com
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