Barry Brennessel — Mystery, Romance, Suspense & Humo(u)r




Finalist for the 2014 IndieFab Book of the Year Awards at Foreword Reviews

Aiden Royce’s journey to an isolated New England hillside raises specters from his past.
But a chance encounter alters the course of his future. A future he never dreamt possible.

In the span between the Great War and the Great Depression, Aiden Royce loses both family and fortune. He has nothing left but memories and regrets until a series of letters arrive; ramblings written by a familiar hand that nevertheless offer Aiden some important clues. Months later he’s roaming the grounds of the crumbling Cebren Spa, a once posh destination, but now an empty shell of mystery and menace.

One saving grace in this perplexity is the handsome Sebastian Desmond, a descendant of the spa’s founders. He rescues Aiden from a storm, but in doing so opens up a different sort of tempest when secrets unravel and both men’s lives are torn asunder.

Can decades-old questions be answered, onerous mysteries solved, and a burgeoning and venturesome romance prosper in the shadows of a once restorative wellspring?


The writing of Wellspring is beautiful and atmospheric – the snow, the storms, sounds. The mood of America in regards to WWI, the sentiment was used well – it suited certain families and the plot perfectly.

The writing is intelligent, elegant, poignant and empathetic. [The author] writes characters who are everyday people dealing with unforeseen events and circumstances. They have an adventure one way or another, but they are not alpha heroes or larger than life, they’re often quite gentle, introverted or conflict aversive. However, they always seem to experience something personal and profound.

Highly recommended for people who are looking for LGBT fiction with beautiful, layered writing, and something historical with a mystery.

Kazza K. for On Top Down Under Book Reviews

The construction of the plot shows the wonderful thought and writing skills of Bressennel, the author. He keeps us turning pages and putting on our detective hats as we try to figure out what is happening and why. His ability to move between past and present is wonderful and the way he ties them together will have you read with mouth agape. I found it easy to understand why Thad wrote in such detail because the author does as well; the descriptions are vivid and we actually see what is written. He also has drawn characters that seem vague thus heightening the mystery.

While basically set during the Depression, the story also spans WWI, WWII and the Korean War. The literary characters are important but the main character is the spa since everything revolves around it.

–Reviews by Amos Lassen

The setting of the decaying mysterious Cebren Spa was perfect! From the danger of its structural problems, to its history and purpose, and of course Sebastian’s fear of it, I just knew it was always going to be critical to the story, a central character if you will.

Wellspring is an engrossing, twisting, surprising mystery that will leave you guessing until the end.

–Gigi for MM Good Book Reviews

If you don’t read this book you will miss out on one helluva great read with puzzles galore and a sweet slow romance in a picturesque New England setting.  If I did stars, this book would get 6 out of 5.

Christopher Moss, That’s All I Read

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s