This novel's title is dark and foreboding and I honestly thought that I would be in for a fright-fest but thankfully this was not the case. Stephen's mom is very sick and due to some huge medical bills he and his dad have to move from Denver, Colorado to the small town of Spencer. (As a Denver resident I was chuffed to see the Mile High City play a role in this narrative)
The residents of Spencer are like those in small towns anywhere-friendly enough but leery of strangers, provincial and protective of their own. Stephen does manage to make friends fairly quickly but as time passes he begins to feel that this sleepy town has some dark secrets.
Brewer uses myth and legend as the backdrop for the story. The Winged Ones are some weird creatures who crave human sacrifice. Supposedly after they have had their fill of human blood things go well in the town financially. Stephen is a skeptic and does decide to look up information about past goings on in Spencer and at one point researches information in the stacks (how cool is that!)
The requisite twist ending didn't catch me completely by surprise but was still thrilling enough. I couldn't help wonder if the book should have been titled The Winged Ones instead since the mere mention of them fills the reader with dread. Due to some drug use and other teen behavior I would recommend this book for ages 13+ since it isn't very scary at all if it were a movie it might be rated PG-13 at most.