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Rogue Phoenix Press is mainly an ebook publisher. Ebooks are available in three formats:  HTML, PDF, and Mobipocket (compatible with Amazon Kindle). After payment is received and your order is confirmed, you will receive instuctions on how to download the book in the format of your choice. Some books are also available in paperback as Print On Demand (POD) books.

Half-Built Houses

SKU HALFBUILTHOUSES

Half-Built Houses by Eric Keller

Charley Ewanuschuk has been mistreated all his life and now survives by moving through society as unnoticed as possible. However, when a murder occurs behind the half-built house he is squatting in society takes notice of the introverted homeless man as he becomes the prime murder suspect. Brian Cox managed to charm his way into a good job in a national law firm but, when the recession hit, he learned that charm is a disposable commodity. Fired by the firm and forced to take on Legal Aid files to pay the bills, Charley's murder trial becomes Brian's first major case. However, this will be no straightforward case. As the trial progresses it becomes apparent forces are working behind the scenes to ensure the homeless man takes the fall for a crime. Told from the points of view of the accused, the lawyer, the detective and the manipulator, Half-Built Houses provides all the thrilling intrigue, clever ingenuity and interesting individuals readers have come to expect form classic courtroom dramas.

  • Title: Half-Built Houses
  • Author: Eric Keller
  • Publication Date: 3/25/2017
  • ISBN: 978-1-62420-315-2
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Reviewed by G. Lloyd Helm Half-Built Houses is a crime novel with elements of the classic procedural story. The crime, the cover up, the police investigation. The difference with this one is that it is set in the great white north of Calgary, Canada. It evokes the place and the people very well. Eric Keller has written a truly great book here. It is filled with interesting characters, all of whom are believable. There are certain of them who are so crushingly sad I could hardly read them without crying. Charley, a lead character, is homeless and tortured and I felt ever icy shiver of his life on the streets of Calgary. His luck has gone from bad to worse when he witnesses a murder, and is arrested for that same murder. Brian, the legal aide public defender who gets to be Charley's lawyer is believable. He is scrambling to pay his bills and maintain his life style and could probably have just gone through the motions of defending Charley, but he feels for the homeless man and so works his tail off for his client. This book is well worth the read. I only gave it four and a half stars because the book did seem to slide over into TV cop story a little bit, but Half-Built Houses is still a great story.

Reviewed by Tamara White The city of Calgary in Alberta, Canada in the backdrop for Eric Keller’s intense and gripping legal thriller the Half Built Houses. Charley Ewanuschuk is a homeless man who found comfort in being mostly invisible to the world around him. But the events on a stormy winter night in Calgary plunge him head first into a murder where the almost mute Charley becomes the main suspect instead of the hero. Charley’s quiet distinctiveness doesn’t just draw the reader into his narrative but makes him a target for the other less desirable characters. Charley’s lawyer, Brain Cox, who has his own set backs, is determined to free his client from the murder charge. Brian has a strong character and determination that balances out Charley’s introverted personality. Eric Keller exposes the reader to not only the grittiness of the legal system but also the vicious realities of prison life. Half Built Houses is filled to the brim with raw emotions and conflicts. Every time the reader thinks they have it figured out Keller throws in another twist that sends the reader in a new direction. One of the unique aspects of the book is the perspective of the book shifts between several of the characters. This gives the reader a full understanding of the vested interested each character has in the murder. Keller’s novel exposes how life is never black or white and happy endings are better saved for fairy tales.

Reviewed by Nancy A. Dafoe In the vein of the pulsing arterial found in John Grisham’s crime/legal thrillers, Eric Keller’s Half-Built Houses is fast paced, meticulously developed, filled with plot twists, and the kind of complicated characters that keep you thinking about them long after you close the pages. Sex, drugs, and alcohol may lead to the predictable crime, but little else about Keller’s novel is predictable. Keller’s familiarity with the law and court cases is apparent and the plot moves seamlessly through to an unexpected conclusion. More than a riveting, criminal procedural taking place in Calgary, however, Half-Built Houses offers subtle but significant social commentary on the issues of homelessness, the long-lasting damages of bullying, and the inequalities in class and social structures. Charley Ewanuschuk, a homeless character accused of the murder of a young woman, stands at the center of the story, but Half-Built Houses is as much the story of Brian Cox, the charming but struggling young lawyer trying his first major criminal case. We know the crime in the opening pages as victim, Natalie Peterson, lies dying in the white snow, but Keller allows the reader to see into the characters’ heads and actions, shifting perspectives from the murdered woman to the suspected killer, to the defense lawyer to the Crown Prosecutor Clay Matthews, and the hardened detective Randall Jenkins on the trail of something that stinks. Lurking in the shadows, Charley is not as alone as he believes. Hugh Young and his son Jason may have wealth and power, but they, too, operate in the shadows. We come to know these characters’ backstories and circumstances leading up to their devastating encounter. Highly visual, readers will feel as if they are watching this drama play out. With no false notes, Keller’s novel feels right even when everything is going wrong, down to the lurking ambiguity.

ByJames Charleson March 28, 2017 Charley, a young homeless man who works as a day-laborer in Calgary, discovers a murdered young woman outside lying in the snow in the back-alley near the abandoned half-built house in an affluent neighbored he’s squatting in. Doing the right thing, he notifies the authorities. However, events quickly unravel for Charley, who had been an odd, tormented, loner all through school. The apparent perpetrator’s affluent father orchestrates a cover-up for his spoiled, loser son, which helps implicate Charley as the murderer. The ensuing trial has all the twists and turns of a Perry Mason court-room thriller, as a young legal defense aide (attorney) Brian, takes the case, befriends Charley (Brian is Charley’s only real friend in the world) , and tries to not only get his client off, but expose the real killer and the manipulating, fixer father. Half-Built Houses keeps the reader engaged and turning the pages to root for not only Charley, but Brian who has taken his first trial and works with the typical gruff detective, Jenkins (who’s on his last case before retirement) to get Charley acquitted, and bring down the privileged father and son. A recommended read for detective and court-room enthusiasts.
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