Sassafras, a novel of Appalachia

by Steven R. Cope

This book may be obtained from your local bookstore,, or you may order directly from the publisher.

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About Steven R. Cope

Wind Publications
600 Overbrook Dr
Nicholasville, KY 40356





Sassafras by Steven R. Cope, 2002, 215 pages, $15.00

An unexpected winter storm descends on the small town of Jolene, Kentucky, and with it a chill of fear and uncertainty when two of the town's children mysteriously disappear.  The town, its little church, as well as the 9-ball-playing patrons of Gracie's Playhouse, must unite to confront tragedy and danger.

Is it some mythical presence come down from Sassafras Mountain to wander the hollows of this Appalachian community?

Among the congregation of Faith Rock on the Hill there is no doubting, something in the wooded shadows at least seems to be stalking the residents of Jolene, watching their every move.  But why Jolene? Are they cursed in some way?  Are they being punished by some higher power?  "Be watchful," says the preacher, "be sober, be vigilant, because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour."

Click HERE to read a review of Sassafras from Appalachian Heritage.

From the book:

       One peppered down the string, climbed onto something foul and delicious, danced in small, mad circles, and climbed back up the string. It passed another one and another one. Both stopped to smell the first, to take a lick, and a taste of what was offered them freely, to dance in their own small, mad circles, their antennae rising and twirling. Then all three pattered down the trunk, trickled off in three directions. Then a whole troop gathered at the base, all at once as if by magic, as if they had just been created. Then another troop. And another. Then all together the three troops shimmied up the trunk, then out and down the limb, down the string, climbing ravagely over and through one another the closer they came to the putrid ham. Then a hundred small, mad circles. Then two or three direct drops of rain and a half dozen of them went sailing, flying end over end. Then a half dozen more. Then a half dozen more. None of them knowing what it was, the warm life they came to rest on . . .