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Novelist Captures the Beast of Bray Road

April 14, 2014



Simon Mandrake
Sybil Press Books
4902 Academy Drive
Madison, WI 53716

Novelist Captures the Beast of Bray Road

In the early Nineties a series of strange sightings were reported around Elkhorn, Wisconsin, all of them focused on a mysterious half-man half-dog seen chasing deer or running across roads. The stories caused a media sensation, and were even highlighted in the national press, including an episode of Animal Planet’s MonsterQuest. The Beast of Bray Road, as the creature was named, became a state-wide legend.

Wisconsin author Todd Michael Cox saw something else in these stories, something deeper than just the oddity of the “Wisconsin werewolf.”

“I wanted to explore what it would be like if something like a werewolf really did exist in rural Wisconsin,” Cox says. “What would it really mean? I realized that if such a thing existed, there would be people who didn’t see it as a mystery but as a reality, a stark and troubling part of their lives. I imagined a family sheltering the poor inflicted soul, keeping him away from the rest of the world, and Beast was born from that idea.”

Beast is the third novel from Cox. In it, a man moves to an old farmhouse in rural Wisconsin in order to care for his ill nephew, who suffers from a disorder so terrible it has pushed away everyone he ever loved. “It’s a study of three people with a big secret, and how secrets and lies become almost another member of any relationship,” Cox says. Prior to writing the book, he made a list of everything such stories usually contain and deliberately avoided all of them. The result is a novel about real people and real relationships, rather than the curses, silver bullets, and full moons of B-movie werewolves.

Todd Michael Cox is a lifelong Wisconsin resident, born in Rhinelander and raised in Oconto, and currently lives in the Madison area. He is the author of the novels Dizzlemuck and After the Death of the Ice Cream Man. He is also a musician and wildlife enthusiast, with a particular passion for reptiles and amphibians. He holds a degree in English from UW-Oshkosh.

Author: Todd Michael Cox
Title: Beast
ISBN: 978-0-9843661-0-1
Sybil Press Books
Established 2010


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