The Hum and the Shiver by Alex Bledsoe


First book in the Tufa series


What can I say about this book?  I’ve read it at least three times.  I love the world Bledsoe creates, full of mystery and magic but set in the present.  I suspect that Bledsoe drew on the legend of the Tuatha de Danaan, the magical reace of Irish lore, in creating the Tufa people of his books.(*see the review below)

 I’ve scanned Bledsoe’s website and I’ve seen nothing that references the Tuatha de Danaan. 

Some sources say that the Tuatha de Danaan, “people of the gods,” or “people of the goddess Danu,” arrived in Ireland on dark clouds.  Some say they came as a fog or mist; still other sources say they came to shore in ships. The Tuatha ruled Ireland from 1897 B.C to 1700 B.C., according to the manuscript, “The Annals of the Four Masters.”

Most sources seem to agree that the Tuatha had supernatural powers. They were skilled in art and science, poetry and magic.  Bledsoe chooses music as the Tufa’s magical and mysterious power. 

When the Milesians invaded Ireland, they drove the Tuatha into the mounds and forests.  According to some, they are still there.

There are now six Tufa novels.  I’ve only read the first two so far.

To read more about the Tuatha, check out:

To meet Alex Bledsoe, go to:

From Goodreads (

*No one knows where the Tufa came from, or how they ended up in the Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee, yet when the first Europeans arrived, they were already there. Dark-haired, enigmatic, and suspicious of outsiders, the Tufa live quiet lives in the hills and valleys of Cloud County. While their origins may be lost to history, there are clues in their music, hints of their true nature buried in the songs they have passed down for generations.

Private Bronwyn Hyatt returns from Iraq wounded in body and in spirit, only to face the very things that drove her away in the first place: her family, her obligations to the Tufa, and her dangerous ex-boyfriend. But more trouble lurks in the mountains and hollows of her childhood home. Cryptic omens warn of impending tragedy, and a restless “haint” lurks nearby, waiting to reveal Bronwyn’s darkest secrets. Worst of all, Bronwyn has lost touch with the music that was once a vital part of her identity.

With death stalking her family, Bronwyn will need to summon the strength to take her place among the true Tufa and once again fly on the night winds…

The Hum and the Shiver is a Kirkus Reviews Best of 2011: Science Fiction & Fantasy title.

Here’s a video to watch:


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