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BLEEDING OF THE SHADOWS: A Nurse's Tale of Loss & Hope by J. Pierce

BLEEDING OF THE SHADOWS: A Nurse's Tale of Loss & Hope

by J. Pierce

358 pages
Bleeding of the Shadows recounts the experience of a struggling nurse, Jim Greene, as he works in a region with a long history of mental illness. This novel probes the depths of human behavior and celebrates the triumph of the human experience.

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Category: Fiction:Thriller:Psychological
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About the Book
Before you delve into Bleeding of the Shadows, I want to mention some fun facts that should maximize your reading experience. First, in this book an unconventional technique is used to advance the plot. Unlike traditional novels in which a protagonist rides the crest of a story arc, this book is more episodic in nature. Also, some of the chapters are shorter and faster than those in a traditional novel. Each chapter has a short story flavor to it because of the episodic style of this novel. Like an intricate mosaic coming together, the recurrent episodes do relate to one another and create a unified tale in which each characterís story comes to an intriguing yet logical conclusion.

The main protagonist, Jim, is a visiting nurse, and most chapters capture him visiting his group of patients in their homes. It was purposely written in this episodic fashion to accurately depict a day in the life of a visiting psychiatric nurse and each of his patients.

Although this book is based upon some of my past experiences as a visiting nurse, certain clinical sacrifices had to be made to keep the story focused. The biggest one is that Jim doesnít acquire any new patients during the six months he worked with Harmony Healthcare. This is not representative of the shifting caseloads that visiting nurses have.

This story is set in 2005 because, well, thatís when the original draft was written. There are figures in the book that had a different public image in 2005 than they do today. For example, in 2005 Chief Wahoo was still the logo on the Cleveland Indians ball cap and Donald Trump was a popular reality TV star. Although times have changed, I have kept such figures and references in the book for the historical authenticity of the time period. Conversely, some topics of conversation have been intentionally omitted. Of particular note are the discussions about race relations. As this book was written seven years before the shooting death of Treyvon Martin and also before the advent of the Black Lives Matters movement, those issues have not been addressed. Also, the choking death of George Floyd and the aftermath because of his death have likewise not been mentioned. I am hoping to update the discussion of race relations in a subsequent novel set after the passing of George Floyd.

I hope you gain insight into mentally ill patients, understanding their day-to-day struggles, and realizing that we are all very much the same. In my experience, I have seen mentally ill patients who have been treated as though they were somehow mentally deficient. I have also seen mentally ill patients treated as though they were dangerous or violent simply because of their illness. In most cases, nothing can be further from the truth. I have known people with mental illness who have held jobs, made friends, had children, owned cars, and demonstrated astonishing talents for creating artwork.

One thing that I have learned over the years is that mental illness cuts across all age groups as well as all cultural, educational, gender, gender identification, religious, and socio-economic boundaries. Mental illness does not discriminate. Unfortunately, some people still face discrimination because of their illness. I hope that in some small way that this book will change false public perceptions about mental illness.

The mentally ill patients that I worked with had aspirations, trials, disappointments, and heartaches that are all part of the shared human experience. My patients were often loving, funny, angry, endearing, and inspirational. I hope you cherish your relationships with these characters as I did my time with my patients.



About the Author
Author J. Pierce has extensive writing experience in different arenas. His work as an associate editor, attorney, nurse, and medical records consultant enabled him to cultivate excellent writing skills. In this debut novel, Bleeding of the Shadows, Pierce showcases his ability to tell a wonderful story for all to enjoy.



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