Blood Runs Cold on the Black Side of the Mountain by Corinne F. Gerwe Summary
Professional bear hunter and woodsman Bobby Burris was raised to hunt and poach on the famous Biltmore Estate lands and forest located adjacent to his family's homestead near Asheville, North Carolina. He was ruled by a tyrannical father who taught him to ignore the law and engaged him in an array of illegal activities from an early age, at which time he witnessed a notorious still-unsolved crime and murder. He was forced to participate in other crimes and retaliations during his adolescence under his father's direction. Rebelling against him, Bobby became a young renegade and formed his own small criminal organization in Asheville that extended beyond the region with links to the Italian and Mexican mafias and drug trafficking routes from Los Angeles to Philadelphia. His life from childhood into adulthood, under a Machiavellian authority, eventually led to his arrest and incarceration in a Federal prison where he by mere chance became a bodyguard for a mob boss of a major New York crime family. His road to perdition was interrupted by a vision that transformed him in the midst of this setting and began within him a process of rebelling once more against a life of crime that he'd been forced into since childhood. The story takes place against a backdrop of mountain wilderness and people with a long history of isolation, independence, and rebellion against authority. From a family of moonshine bootleggers, a legacy of crime developed from father to son that began with illegal poaching on the vast acreage of the magnificent Biltmore Estate and its forestlands, hunting parties with politically connected cronies from Asheville's "old boy"network, a series of hidden crimes, cruelties, and cover-ups that led to the monstrous formation of a young man with the brutalized heart of a stone cold killer. This story inflects the true crime genre with a psychological perspective, revealing unsolved mysteries, secret societies, bold adventure set within regional history, and family drama with a focus on the father/son relationship involving murder, sin and redemption. Bobby's journey from the black side of the mountain through a wilderness of transforming enlightenment is an exciting, intriguing, and inspiring story of physical and psychological survival. The book glows with a loving appreciation for the good that lies deep within some of the most hardened hearts, just as the setting, deep in the Appalachian Mountains, is shown bursting with images of spectacular beauty and the rich bounty of nature even while danger may lurk at every turn.