What people are saying about Schism...average 4.5 Stars!
4/4 Stars - Schism by Clabe Polk is the third installment of the Detective Mike Eiser series. The series centers around a Detective in a small town in Georgia. This book, like the others in the series, is a thriller which is difficult to put down.
Schism begins with Kat Thomas in Atlanta. She has a young son, named Jimmy, and is pregnant with her second son, named Quinton. Quinton’s father, Sylvester Brown, a member of the Westside Dragons, is killed by “Mad Dog” Lincoln, an up-and-coming member of the rival gang, Raven’s Claws. The loss of her future husband prompts Kat to uproot her life and children from Atlanta and move to Poplar Bluffs.
Years later, “Mad Dog” Lincoln is arrested by the ATF for the possession of illegal guns. In order to stay out of prison, “Mad Dog” Lincoln becomes a confidential informant to report the activities of the Raven’s Claws in Atlanta. The leaders of the Raven’s Claws become suspicious of “Mad Dog” Lincoln and banish him to Poplar Bluffs to start a new branch of the gang there.
Raven’s Claws in Poplar Bluffs are actively recruiting Quinton. Jimmy urges Quinton not to pursue initiation into the Raven’s Claws, but Quinton gets in too deep. The Raven’s Claws and “Mad Dog” Lincoln don’t want to let him go. A number of crimes follow, including theft, murder, and kidnapping. Detective Mike Eiser is tasked with solving these crimes, protecting the citizens of Poplar Bluffs, and punishing those responsible for the crimes.
Schism is a thriller which kept me up all night reading. The town of Poplar Bluffs truly comes to life through the vast array of characters. This novel separates itself from other thrillers in two ways. First, the perspectives of multiple characters are shared. This allows the reader to feel and understand the thoughts and actions of many characters. While it can be confusing when jumping around from character to character, Clabe Polk handles it brilliantly, making sure the reader knows exactly who to focus on at each point in the story. Second, slang is used when some of the main characters are speaking. The slang can be difficult to read quickly in some areas, but when read slowly the slang adds another layer to the characters. The character development is superb throughout the novel and by the end of the book, the characters feel like friends and family.
Schism starts out a little slow as the storyline is explained, but quickly turns into a novel that will keep readers up at night. Also at the beginning of the novel, there are some very minor editing issues. Most notably, the use of Westside Dragons and West Side Dragons.
The character development made Schism one of the better novels I have read in a long time. Therefore, I would rateSchism a 4 out of 4 stars! After finishing, I quickly purchased the first two installments of the series and am looking forward to reading them. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a good thriller. Sara Payne, Official Review: Schism by Clabe Polk Post Number:#1 by sarahpayne23 for Online Book Club
5-Stars - I really loved this book! I thought it was excellently written (a few minor editing things but nothing too major) and kept my attention from the dramatic opening to the fulfilling finish. It is a relatively quick read, one I finished in the course of a few evenings. (I didn’t want to put it down!) The characters were gritty, edgy, and showed me a side of the darker side of life one can only really experience through books. I was genuinely surprised at a few things that happened, and thought the tension and narrative was great. I will definitely be looking for more works from Clabe Polk in the future… the blurb from the next book “Angelica” looks really good! (5 stars) Darla Ortiz
4-Stars - “Schism” by Clabe Polk is the second book I’ve read from this author (the first being “Hot Summer Nights” – a short story.) The good part was that this is an excellent novel that captured my attention from the beginning and never once let it go. Each scene was riveting, imaginative, and well crafted. The descriptions were very vivid and realistic – like we are watching a movie. And for the most part the action and pacing were good. The only problem that I found were the many instances of grammar and punctuation errors that could have been cleaned up with a good editing/proofreading job. This may not really bother some people, but it does me after a while. HOWEVER, even with that said, I really did enjoy this book and would read more from this author. He has a natural gift for crafting a well-thought out story and developing exciting, memorable characters. Karen
4/5 Stars - WARNING…when starting this book make sure you don’t have anywhere you need to be or anything you need to do because you won’t want to stop reading until you’ve finished it all!! Trust me on this! The book starts off with an explosive, unforgettable beginning and just keeps going. The characters Kat, Mad Dog, Eiser, and all the others were genuine and believable, and I think what I liked the most about this book was just the overall feel the author managed to create where it felt like we are really in the story. Even though at times I thought the “dialect speak” was a bit much… it slowed down my reading as I sometimes tried to decipher what they were saying, it gave a great flavor to the book that helped me visualize everything better. I can see fans of crime/thrillers eagerly gobbling this one down. Suitable for adults. (4-5 stars) Nicole Hastings
4-Stars - "Schism” by Clabe Polk was terrific! Once I started reading I didn’t want to stop until I’d finished the whole thing. It pulls you in from the beginning, and I enjoyed the author’s “voice” and unique style of writing. The interweaving plotlines were well-developed and not predictable, and the element of gang life was a new, exciting element for me. The characters were all interesting and well-written, and although there were some grammatical and punctuation errors, it wasn’t anything that really bothered me. I’d love to read more from this author in the future. Happy to see he has written so much already – I’ll be checking out his other works soon. Recommend. Brenda Maxwell
4-Stars - I thoroughly enjoyed this novel. It is a page turner and held my interest from beginning to end. The author brought the horrors of the gang culture to life. Definitely looking forward to more work by this author, and particularly novels featuring Detective Mike Eiser L. Stacy
5-Stars - Great first novel by Clabe Polk. Great characters. Great story telling, grabs you and keeps your interest!!!!! S. Greenoe
4-Stars - This was a long read and but one that kept the reader interested. The plot seemed centered on the thug and it kinda surprised this reader to realize it was a book about a police detective. For a good part of the book, Det. Eisner was nowhere to be found. The character of MD seemed indestructible and that wore on me after awhile. I would have had a certain gun aimed three feet higher for a more permanent solution. The book turned out to be a modern day urban version of a Mike Hammer mystery.
I think fans of old fashioned film noire detective movies and books will love this book. It’s a page turner that keeps a reader on the edge of their seat.
A four-star work because the plot arc of MD’s focus on one family wasn’t really well defined. Ran on a bit but the great action scenes did allay that somewhat. A worthy addition to the annals of great detective novels.
Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author in the hopes I'd review it. N.N. Light, Princess of the Light
4-Stars - “Schism” is a crime/action novel, first in the Detective Mike Eiser Series, which seems to be to be directed at the older Young Adult market. While violence and coarse language play their parts, neither reaches the level of obscenity current in harder-edged adult crime novels.
Perhaps this comes from the setting, Poplar Bluffs, which is a small town in rural Georgia, and an opportunity for the Atlanta Raven’s Claws to set up a new crime domain. Fortunately for the citizens of the town, the gang leader sent to lead this foray is a bit of a screw-up, as are his henchmen. Likewise, the citizens of the town and their protectors are less hardened to the realities of organized crime. Thus the conflict stays within reasonable bounds, making it appropriate for younger readers.
Another clue as to the intended audience is a rather straightforward and sometimes predictable plotline, where luck plays a larger part than usual. More sophisticated readers will perhaps find this not up to their expectations. For those who are more forgiving, the story moves along quickly and smoothly, with sufficient twists to keep us interested.
I should comment on the dialect spoken by many of the characters. While I do not doubt the veracity of the portrayal, I found it rather heavy to wade through. It is usual in stories with a heavy dialect in the dialogue to bring it on strong at the beginning, but once it is established, to back off, making it easier for readers to understand what is going on without slowing down or even re-reading at times.
I enjoyed the characters in this story, those on both sides of the law, and found it refreshing that the young potential gang members were not stereotyped black slum dwellers. A few of the minor characters are pretty much stock items in these stories (one father just happens to be an ex-Navy SEAL), but they act in normal, believable ways, so their presence does not offend us.
Another plus is the ending, which does not fall into the tempting trap of leaving threads untied to force us to buy the next book in the series. This is a true stand-alone novel.
A rousting action/police drama for 14 years plus. Looking forward to the next installment. Gordon Long
5-Stars - Wow, “Schism” By Clabe Polk was awesome! I haven’t read anything like that in a long time, if ever. For once it seemed like the characters were anything but the stock, ordinary typical hero/protag guys, but instead all had demons, motivations, secrets, and was totally un predictable. I liked how the characters spoke as you could really see their personalities, and I thought the settings were descriptive and creative. A few formatting glitches here and there, and some small editing and punctuation things, but nothing too horrible. Overall it All came together to create a fresh-feeling novel that was out of the ordinary for this genre and kept me hooked throughout. Even though it is part of a series, it does read like a stand alone, and I am happy to read more Clabe Polk in the future! (5 stars). Carla Biggins
5-Stars - Raven's claw is moving guns into Atlanta and other major cities. When the ATF caught one member, Mad Dog was made a deal. . . He helps the ATF get the "Claws" and he will spend no prison time . . . if he fails he will be seeing the inside of a 4'x4' cell block for some time.
The "default" president smelled a rat and is on to Mad Dog. He knows Mad Dog will be taking them all out in a short amount of time. He ships him off the "boondocks". They feel he will be no good to the ATF there.
Mad Dog is making tracks to getting new members, no what the age, no matter what the cost. When Mad Dog picks the wrong to boys to join his gang things go array. . . . .
Kat a single mom has been dealt a rough hand, she knows what the future will be if her boys end up in the wrong hands. She will do everything in her power to keep her boys safe. There is no bond greater than your children and there is no line you will not cross to keep them safe. The question is what line will she have to cross ??
Schism is full of stone cold gang terror at its finest !! The novel will not let you down. I read this before I realized it was a book 3 and did not seem lost at all. I will warn you this novel is full of gang "lingo" I followed thru the novel just fine. I felt it added character to the novel. Very good read. Wende, Juliesbookreview.blgspot.com
5-Stars - This is a very interesting book. "Schism", A detective mike Eiser novel is the 3rd book of Mike Eiser Series by Clabe Polk. Mr. Polk is not a writer by profession, but you will probably not realize this if you read his book without reading the bio. To be honest with you, I haven’t completed my reading of the whole book, but from what I have read, I think I will be not a waste of my time when I finish the book. For those of you who like detective books, this will be one to keep in your collection. I hope readers will go on to read the other books in the series after reading this one. Isaac G. Lee
5-Stars - Schism by Clabe Polk was a book unlike many I have read before. It never failed to keep my attention throughout its entirety and it only took me a few days to finish because I wanted to know what was going to happen next. The descriptive narrative allowed me to easily visualize both the setting and the events taking place within the story. Action and mystery filled each page and the description and dialogue helped to further develop the characters’ personalities. There were some minor grammatical errors throughout the story; however, they did not take away from the development of the story. I would definitely recommend this book not only to readers interested in action and mystery but also to those who are looking for something new and exciting.Macy P
5-Stars - A very real and intriguing read The writer does an excellent job depicting gang life, the sheer brutality of Street life, and the boys in the hood. Despite these obvious perils, there is still a strong sense of comradery, and importance of family bonds. This brings life in the ghetto to the forefront with Language and characters that are ver memorable. It reminds me a lot of "Luis Miguel Fuentes: Diary of a Dirty Boy". Real, in your face, and poignant. Akshay Hattiholi
3-Stars - 'Mad Dog' Lincoln is suspected of being an informant by his gang, the Raven's Claws. He's banished to Poplar Bluffs where he attempts to establish a new gang chapter. Fifteen-year-old Quinton Thomas is initially keen to join but soon realises he's out of his depth. However, Mad Dog wont let him go and uses intimidation and violence to ensure Quinton becomes a member.
Although very well-written, I thought Schism was a little too simplistic. The violence and intimidation lacked real-world brutality. That said, with one or two tweaks i.e. the 'incident' with Quinton's mother and the Reverend Hollaway (which may or may not be seen as unsuitable), this would make an excellent (Older) Young Adult novel. I'm sure this age group would find it an exciting read and be able to empathise with Quinton and his elder brother Jimmy.
Being British, I found it difficult to follow the local dialect. Whilst I'm sure it's authentic, it's not something I have personally ever experienced in life. It was a relief when someone actually spoke proper English! It just didn't seem to transcribe very well in my (British) opinion and I struggled with it.
The story flowed well and the pacing was perfect for a book of this length. I thought the characters were somewhat two dimensional and I had the feeling I was watching the action play out through rose tinted spectacles. Should this book be aimed towards a younger market, I think it would be very positively received and I would have no hesitation recommending it. 3-Stars. Lynne, Barnsey's Books
5-Stars - The cover and the title is very appropriate for the theme of the book.
“Schism” is a crime/action novel, first in the Detective Mike Eiser Series, which brings the gang wars back to life.
The story is fast paced with beautiful twists to keep us interested. The attention given to maintaining the tension in the plot is commendable.
I enjoyed the dialect. The non-stereotyping of the gang members was a welcome change. It kept me so much interested that I was awake the night to read it fully. I loved the ending.
I wish Clabe Polk all the very best for his future authorship works.
My rating is
5- Star - Quinton Thomas was picked up by Tiny Tim, & Alfie.
He would be initiated into the Raven’s Claws street gang.
Next stop Mona’s Mini Market.
Kathryn “Kat” Addison Thomas had grown up in Atlanta’s Bowen Homes Projects.
Frank Thomas (Kats’s husband, abusive, alcoholic, enforcer) had a son together Jimmy Thomas (4).
Sylvester “Silly” Brown (narcotics dealer, Westside Dragons) was her next choice of a man.
Quinton Thomas (2, son) was the newest arrival.
Milton “Mad Dog” Davis Lincoln (Raven’s Claws street gang lieutenant) wanted a piece of the pie in that neighborhood.
Sylvester was murdered at The Foxy Lady Lounge (Bankhead Highway).
It was time for Kat & her 2 boys to move on.
Fast forward 14 yrs. Port of Savannah. ATF SA Jack Cagle, was taking Mad Dog down.
Quinton “QT” Thomas & Jimmy “T” Thomas were now rising stars on the streets.
Sheriff office. Detective Mike Eiser (former USAF), & Detective Malcolm “Mini” Moore were discussing how to dismantle the Raven’s Claws street gang.
Avery Mullins (Raven’s Claws street gang) & QT were in a serious car accident.
QT was in the hospital.
What was Sondra (QT’s GF) up to?
I did not receive any type of compensation for reading & reviewing this book. While I receive free books from publishers & authors, I am under no obligation to write a positive review, only an honest one. All thoughts & opinions are entirely my own.
A very awesome book cover, great font & writing style. A very well written Crime book. It was very easy for me to read/follow from start/finish & never a dull moment. There were no grammar/typo errors, nor any repetitive or out of line sequence sentences. Lots of exciting scenarios, with several twists/turns & a great set of unique characters to keep track of. This could also make another great Crime/Action/Adventure movie, or better yet a mini TV series. There is no doubt in my mind this is a very easy rating of 5 stars.
Thank you for the free Goodreads; Making Connections; Winlock Press; Author; PDF book
Tony Parsons (Washburn)
5-Stars - Detective Mike Eiser is an interesting character. I was pleased to read a good detective book. I like to find these "diamonds in the rough" and I think this is one. I have not read anything else from this author but I enjoyed this book. * I received this book for the author in exchange for an honest review* Aly