— One man’s lifelong quest across the turmoil of recent history —
With motifs ranging from chivalric adventure to metaphysical mystery, New Orleans author W.S. Culpepper brings a charming but most unlikely hero and an exotic range of supporting characters to life in a compelling story of sacrifice and discovery.
Harry McChesney never knew his dead brother, Buddy, but they had a connection more powerful than family or memory—Harry’s biggest problems in life were always about Buddy.
Harry stared at his reflection in the mirror and answered his own question, “Buddy’s not here to take this on. So, who else is there?” Harry McChesney’s family was suffering, and his own life was a mess. But Harry’s uncle had offered him one last chance to pull his sorry life and his family back together.
As America enters World War II, Harry takes up his uncle’s challenge and enlists in the Army Air Corps—an immensely dangerous beginning to an unforgettable journey, one in which his dead brother, Buddy, always seems to be present. Harry gets help along the way from an old friend, a protective talisman, and a bizarre set of twins. Yet his deceased brother’s hold over unfolding events is unshakable and often terrifying. Buddy’s tormented legacy threatens Harry’s success at every turn, even threatens his very existence.
In the chaos of war Harry makes a shocking discovery that might offer a resolution and release for both brothers. But their conflict doesn’t end there, and Harry faces failure and defeat much later in life when time is running out on everything. Once again, his problem is “always about Buddy.”
From a thriving 19th-century New Orleans to the city’s devastation in Hurricane Katrina and amidst the harsh realities of England during World War II, The Replacement Son takes readers through vividly depicted locales and eras as Harry pursues his existential quest.