Even though it's written as a thriller, 'Reaper' touches a subject that is close to my heart-the homeless, and especially the homeless youth, living on the street.



When my son was in his teens, oh so many years ago, he befriended several street kids. Often as not he would bring one or more home with him. We fed them and sometimes they would stay with us, whether for a night, or a week or more. In the main, they were good young people who, through no fault of their own, felt it necessary to leave home to escape untenable conditions. Their lives were hard, trying to survive and maintain as best they could. Thanks to my son, they could have at least one good meal, and were given at least a small bit of time to recoup and feel safe before having to face life on the streets again. I vividly remember one young couple I ran into, perhaps a month after they stayed with us. They made it a point to stop me on the street to thank me for making them feel as if they mattered-which they did. All the homeless, young or old, matter!

Living on the streets is never easy, whether you're an adult or a teen-or unfortunately, even younger. Things were bad, back then, and from what I can see and what research I've done, it's not getting much better now. Yes, there are shelters-often overcrowded-and drop-in spots where the kids can get clothing, hygiene kits, and other such necessities. There are counselors who will help those who want it to find housing, jobs, and to earn their GEDs. But the need is much greater than the resources available. Especially in cities that have 'no camping' bans, and laws in place against giving the homeless food. All in an attempt to drive them away. Out of sight, out of mind, is not a cure!

Reaper is a man who understands this, and tries to help. He's out nightly, defending the homeless-mostly the kids, but also the adults-against the predators who prey on the weak and defenseless, either for sport or to use them for their own purposes. And never doubt that the predators are out there. Especially when it comes to LGBT teens. According to studies, forty percent or more of homeless kids are LGBT who have been rejected by their families. For them, finding shelters that will accept and respect them can be close to impossible-although that has been getting marginally better.

If Reaper could have his way, there would be no need for what he does. And perhaps, in time, that will come to pass. Until then… Please try to help all the homeless persons out there, if you can. Make a donation of goods or money to your local shelter. Even a smile or a nod as you walk past a man, woman or teen looking for handouts so they can afford a meal that night, will let them know you see them as a person. It reinforces that they do exist as human beings, and that someone cares. That they matter-because they do.

Blurb for Reaper:

Leading a double life can be challenging, as Reaper well knows.

Take one self-styled vigilante-Reaper. Add his alter ego, successful forty-one-year-old, investment counselor, Zack Ward. Then throw in Dallas Comstock, thirty-two, a beat cop, Zack's lover and the only person who knows Zack is Reaper. The result is men on a mission. They protect homeless kids living on the streets while trying to find a new building for a soon-to-be demolished shelter belonging to Zack's mentor, Brian Foster-the man who helped Zack get off the streets.

Someone seems to be kidnapping streetwise young girls. Reaper pulls together a team of street kids-Zip and his boyfriend, Colly, Raven and Sway-to stop the predator. At the same time Zack, with the help of his business clients, sets up a charity ball to raise money for the new shelter, Off-the-Street.

What happens next may strengthen Zack's and Dallas' love-or destroy it.

Buy link: https://www.pride-publishing.com/book/reaper

About Edward Kendrick:

Born and bred Cleveland, I earned a degree in technical theater, later switched to costuming and headed to NYC. Finally seeing the futility of trying to become rich and famous in the Big Apple, I joined VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America), ending up in Chicago for three years. Then it was on to Denver where I put down roots and worked as a costume designer until just recently.

I began writing a few years ago after joining an online fanfic group. Two friends and I then started a group for writers where they may post any story they wish no matter the genre or content. Since then, for the last three years, I've been writing for publication. Most, but not all, of my work is m/m, either mildly erotic or purely 'romantic', and more often than not it involves a mystery or covert operations.