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A Plague of Grackles

A Plague of Grackles

Book 3 of 3: Avery Byrne Goth Vigilante series

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What's It About?

Amidst a violent storm of hate, she fights for justice and hercommunity’s survival

A swatting attack on a fellow transgender woman ignites a fire within Avery Byrne. A goth tattoo artist by day and a fierce vigilante by night, Avery sees a sinister pattern linking this tragedy to escalating assaults on the trans community—a pattern the police refuse to acknowledge.

Fueled by a relentless need to protect her people, Avery, alongside her girlfriend Roz, vows to unravel the conspiracy that targets her community. But their pursuit of truth turns perilous, spiraling into a maelstrom of violence that strikes Avery at her core.

Surviving an attack meant to silence her, Avery emerges scarred but undaunted, diving deeper into the abyss to confront a nemesis entwined with her own dark past. With every revelation, the stakes skyrocket, pushing Avery to a precipice where a single misstep could devastate the trans community she fights to protect.

A Plague of Grackles, book three in the Avery Byrne Goth Vigilante series, weaves a tale of action, suspense, and profound courage. Dharma Kelleher delivers a heart-pounding thriller that not only entertains but also challenges the reader to confront the complexities of justice, trauma, and solidarity.

Dive into Avery Byrne's world—where the fight for justice is personal, the risks are monumental, and the quest for truth knows no limits.

Read Chapter 1 Now

Sophia Bitsui gazed deeply into Étienne François’s dark eyes aglow with candlelight. The aroma of cologne with a hint of shea butter made her senses tingle. Étienne leaned closer and trailed a line of kisses down her throat. 

Her body reacted as if awakening for the first time. A deep need grew in her core. She craved him in a way she’d never felt with anyone before. The kisses continued along her chest, teasing the buds of her nipples, making her gasp. 

Dialogue from the half-watched movie murmured softly, its meaning drowned out by the thunder of their synchronized heartbeats. Wrapped in this magnificent man’s embrace, Sophia allowed herself to let down her shield and be in the moment—a respite from the hatred and vitriol of the white man’s world that preferred women like her to disappear without a trace. 

Étienne’s touch was gentle, strong, and reassuring, pushing her ecstasy to heights she’d never thought possible. She moaned hungrily when at last he entered her. He was so big yet still a perfect fit.  

Faster and harder he thrust until, at last, pleasure overwhelmed the circuitry in her brain. The orgasm rippled through every cell of her body. She cried out and laughed, her heart fluttering. 

“Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God…”

When the waves of rapture subsided, Sophia floated on a cloud of euphoria. “That was… better than I ever dreamed possible. I haven’t had an orgasm since…”  

He chuckled. “Well, it was about time, then.” 

Étienne’s deep and resonant voice sent shivers through her body. His spellbinding accent danced around each syllable.

“You… you’re so amazing,” she said.

“As are you. For many years, I dreamed of meeting a woman as lovely and enchanting as you.” 

Sophia flushed. “I don’t know why you say that. I’m nothing special.”

“Okontrè, cheri mwen,” Étienne replied in Haitian Creole, his eyes sparkling. “You are a woman so rare.”

“I think the word you’re looking for is freak.”

“Non, non, non. Rare like yon bijou presye, a precious jewel.”

“Why? Because I’m trans? Or because I’m Navajo?”

“Both have shaped you into the woman you are—brilliant, beautiful, fearless, and strong. The struggles you’ve overcome to be your authentic self—they’ve amplified your radiance. Your vibrant, courageous soul enchants me like a siren’s song.”

“You’ve faced far worse struggles than I have.”

He nodded. “Wi, I have survived many tragedies. Hurricanes, earthquakes, disease, government corruption, loss of my family.”

“You did more than survive. You thrived. To become a doctor after all of that? You did your family proud, baby.”

“Wi, but my proudest moment was finding Mademoiselle Sophia Bitsui of Phoenix, Arizona.” 

Étienne kissed her deeply again. She felt their souls intertwine. Bliss was the only word to describe it. 

Without warning, he broke off the embrace, his eyes alert with alarm. “What was that sound?” 

“What sound?” She’d noticed nothing over the thunder of their heartbeats. But when she concentrated, she heard it too—a muffled clomping of footsteps and tinny, distorted voices.

“It’s just the TV,” she assured him, not wanting to interrupt their second round of love-making. 

Étienne sat up and snatched the remote from the coffee table then muted the television. The sounds were getting louder. The front door burst open, and a group of men dressed in combat gear stormed into the house, their assault weapons trained on Étienne. 

“Police! Get on the floor! Do it now!”

Étienne sprang to his feet, his naked body shielding Sophia’s. “Who are you?” he demanded, brandishing the remote. “How dare you break into this house! Get out this instant!”

Terror coiled around Sophia’s heart as she sat up, her blood chilling to ice. She sensed the impending doom but was powerless to stop it. Time slowed, each second stretching into eternity. 

In an instant, deafening gunfire filled the air. Bullets tore Étienne’s body apart in a grotesque tableau of death. His once sturdy frame collapsed to the floor. 

“Nooo!” She reached for him, and searing pain bit into her own shoulder. 

Her ears rang with an otherworldly silence. Her body felt detached from her spirit, even as her shoulder burned with hellfire. Consciousness faded as the hungry void pulled her into merciful oblivion.

When And How You'll Receive Your Book

Ebooks: Ebooks are delivered via Bookfunnel. You will receive an email with a link to download your book(s) onto your ebook device or app.

If you run into any problems, click on the Help link on the Bookfunnel page. They are experts in helping people get their content onto their device or app.

Signed Print Books (US. only): I personally sign and mail print books via USPS Media Mail. I usually fulfill the order within a day or so, and it usually arrives within a week.

Page Count and Other Details

  • Pages: 328
  • Print size: 5.5"x8.5"

Customer Reviews

Based on 4 reviews
Steve Bonczyk

So, Avery’s third book and it’s as good as all the others. There’s always something going on from beginning to end. I loved every word. Cannot wait for the next one. Highly recommended.

An intense ride from the very start!

A Plague of Grackles is an intense ride from the very first chapter.
At times, it was difficult to read - heart-wrenching with the brutal truth of what it means to be different and under attack in the US. Trans men and women are dying, children are being tortured for trying to live their truth - and the fear is palpable.
Dharma handles it all with grace and understanding - and the ending is beautifully done.

Definitely a story to read and then think about - then read again. "When in doubt, start with love."

Kimberly Schup
People are amazing!

People are amazing in so many ways. As a species, we have created great works of art, music and literature. We have eradicated some major illnesses, made life easier and safer in so many ways, we have even ventured into space and put men on the moon. With all these accomplishments, it is so heart-breaking that we have yet to make much progress in conquering our baser faults such as prejudice, malice and greed. These negative attributes are showcased quite dramatically as Avery, ever the outspoken voice for the trans community, dives headfirst into the investigation of an officer-involved shooting death of a friend while also inheriting the roles of coordinator of the Trans March and organizer of the Phoenix Gender Alliance’s booth at an upcoming Pride festival. What could possibly go wrong, you ask? Well, pretty much everything. Grab yourself a copy of this book and settle down for a wild adventure with Avery and her friends that includes kidnapping, flying bullets, violent mobs, and an eye-opening look at the horrendous struggles some people must endure in this so-called “inclusive” society of ours. Within the confines of a compelling action-packed thriller, Dharma Kelleher once again shines a spotlight on some sensitive and divisive topics while portraying with poignancy and compassion the human cost of our short-sightedness.

I was provided with an advance copy of this book, for which I thank the author, but I am sharing my honest and unbiased review on a completely voluntary basis.

Don't mess with the children.

This is the third book in Dharma Kelleher’s Avery Byrne series. As with Dharma’s other series the protagonist is a member of the LGBTQ family, in particular she is transgender. If that rules out a book for you, I can only say ‘Your Loss,’ as this an excellent thriller where the main character is trying to protect others who are unjustly persecuted. In this book those are transgender children. Being transgender herself Dharma knows all to well the issues that transgenders face daily and articulates these issues well.
Don’t get me wrong this is not a book written just to highlight LGBTQ issues it is foremost an very well written action thriller that will hold your attention and make you not want to put it down. Avery, like many of Dharma’s characters, has the habit of putting herself in harms way when she sees someone in trouble. That often will lead to harm to her, but she still keeps up her quests.

Note: I am an advance copy reader of Dharma’s and other writers’ books who gets free review copies. I do not let that affect my reviews. I will always say what I think, be it good or bad opinions, about a book.