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Who is Kelland?

Two young boys rescued from the Viet Nam War. A couple drifting apart over the
suicide of their only son. A devoutly Catholic child with the voice of an angel who
is troubled by visions both sacred and profane. What links these seemingly
disconnected people, and who is the mysterious Kelland, so determined
to lay bare their hidden agony?

Angel or demon? Sinner or saint? Kelland is an enigma, a puzzle and an
almost imperceptible presence who will do whatever it takes to expose
the dark secrets in their lives. Kelland is violence. Kelland is sorrow.
Kelland is their only redemption.

Reader Reviews at GoodReads

Black Quill

Best Small Press Chill (Editors' Choice)
3rd Annual Black Quill Awards.

(links to full reviews are underlined)


Beautifully written, a kaleidoscope of finely drawn
characters and an unfolding mystery that reveals
the hope and horror in the human heart.

     -- Alan Brennert, Author
         Honolulu, Moloka'i, and Palisades Park


...a gorgeous, genre-defying novel of heartrending truth...
that builds slowly and confidently toward a page-turning
climax that will leave you breathless...

-- Stoker Award-winner Vince A. Liaguno
at Dark Scribe Magazine


Paul G. Bens’ novel Kelland is horror. Real horror. Before you realize it,
the terror is already off the page and into the room.

      -- Alex Mcdermott,
         Dark Media Magazine


Reminiscent of Stephen King...[Bens] is an author to watch."

      -- Karen L. Newman,
          Dark Discoveries Magazine


... [an] inventive debut novel...searing
realism...intricate plot...

-- Lambda Award-winner Richard Labonte,
    Pride Source


Kelland is a tale that will haunt you...a story
that clings to your mind and forces you to
think about it long after you’ve stopped reading.

-- Kassa at Three Dollar Bill Reviews


Kelland is the powerfully moving tale of the ultimate betrayal
of trust and innocence. It is haunting in its imagery and
frightening in its candor. It is topical, it is relevant, and it is a
story that insinuates itself into the psyche of the reader
who is fortunate enough to experience it.

          -- Lisa at Top 2 Bottom Reviews


As the story unfolds...disconcerting twists arise that
challenge what you think you know, even daring you to take
another look at your long-cherished notions of good and evil.

       -- Kilian Melloy at EDGE Magazine

Kelland doesn’t rest on gimmicky thrills and revelations,
but there are some ah-ha! moments reminiscent of M. Night
Shyamalan’s better films....by the story’s end, you realize
Bens hasn’t wasted a single word.

      -- Lydia Thorne at Uniquely Pleasurable


It is the kind of book which changes how you think,
how you see the world – even how you see yourself

-- Ann Somerville, Author
Remastering Jerna

No light snack, Kelland is a novel you can sink your teeth into,
chew on for a good while, and still have more for later.
This is good news, since its dark, mysterious, smoky
flavor is worth savoring.

        -- Wayne Courtois at Out in Print

As I read this book I found myself wanting to keep
reading...and at the same time I wanted to slow down
so that it didn't end. That's the same feeling I would get
when reading some of my favorite Stephen King books....

-- Lily Almeida at I Love Books


[Kelland] does not shy away from the ugliness that is
inside people and that waits for us around every corner
of life, but at the same time, it somehow reminded me
that for all these flaws and failures, there is something
forgivable, and perhaps even something worth loving...

        -- Kit Zheng, Author of Torn


...a full bodied mystery of human relations and the
divineness that can be found in all of us

        -- Liz at GLBT Bookshelf

In a virtuoso writing performance, Bens manages to inject
this story with as much hope as despair, as much innocence
as guilt and as much forgiveness as accusation...

 -- TT Thomas at The Daily Horse
      (WARNING: Full review contains significant spoilers)


...it's suspense, but quiet, personal, tightly-wound, not in
the sense of guys chasing across rooftops. It's a book
that comes apart in your head... It peels open in parts.

-- Heather Gladney, Author
Teot's War and Bloodstorm


I was ready to being plunged deep into a dark drama and
not having even the small hope of an escaping light
somewhere. It's not like that,Kelland is that light.

      -- Elisa Rolle at LiveJournal

...the reader is drawn to find out the common thread that
binds the players, and the truth behind the tormenting secrets
keeping them walled apart from each other—and themselves.

      -- E.B. Boatner at Lavender Magazine


Paul Bens is a master storyteller. Kelland is an engaging read
with characters that simply won't let go of you. If this is a first
novel, Paul Bens has a fine literary career ahead of him.

        -- Noël Alumit, Author
            Letters to Montgomery Clift
            and Talking to the Moon


The Ripples & Repercussions of Paul G. Bens, Jr.
- Interview by Vince A. Liaguno at Dark Scribe Magazine

Excerpt from Kelland - Velvet Mafia: Dangerous Queer Fiction

Interview by Marc Schuster - Small Press Reviews

Paul Bens on "Kelland": Interview by Kilian Melloy - Edge Magazine

Northern Kentucky Native Pens First Novel - TheSkeptikOne

Asian Americans Take Center Stage in Enigmatic Kelland - Asian Week