PUBLISHED REVIEWS

ELLSWORTH AMERICAN NEWSPAPER
July 2th, 2015 by Jennifer Osborn

BLUE HILL — Retired Maine State Police Detective Stephen Pickering strikes one as a man for whom many things come easily.

That was certainly the case for “Bad Moon Rising,” his first novel, which was published by North Country Press in June.

Pickering said he spent 30 days writing the thriller at his Blue Hill home.

“I just started typing and this is what came out,” Pickering said. “It was easy. I’m not saying that to be flip or anything.”
The crime novel is set on Deer Isle. Inspiration came from an actual kidnapping in the Stonington village of Oceanville in March of 1980.

Thirteen men from Massachusetts and Florida, part of an organized drug ring, were waiting for a vessel to put in at the deep-water harbor at Settler’s Landing when six local youths stumbled upon them. The teens were threatened and held hostage. Luckily, former Stonington Police Chief Richard Sweetsir was tipped off that something was up and the plot was uncovered.

In “Bad Moon Rising,” two young brothers stumble upon a similar scene, but the whole plot ends differently.

Pickering began his own private investigation practice when he retired from the state police in 2006.

The former detective sergeant’s wife, Betty, encouraged him to start writing one winter when his private investigative work had slowed. That was in 2008-2009.

“She thought I would write a Dave Barry…” Pickering said. “I just started typing and this is what came out.”

READ MORE at Ellsworth American website

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REVIEW BY GEORGE SMITH MAINE
Bangor Daily News Columnist and Outdoor Feature Writer

I’ve always been impressed by folks who retired from careers that had nothing to do with writing, who then begin writing in their retirement years. It’s probably easier to write nonfiction, at least it is for me, but those who can write compelling novels are definitely few and far between.

I’ve been working on a novel for many years and have only gotten up to 8,000 words. Just 60,000 to go! I think it’s particularly challenging to write good dialogue, something that I value as a reader of novels.

Stephen Pickering has somehow mastered the craft of writing fiction, and he’s particularly good with dialogue. His novel, Bad Moon Rising, published by North Country Press in Unity, is, well, masterful. I raced through it in a single day while vacationing in Lubec. It’s that compelling.

READ MORE at George Smith Maine online