When the central evil of your book is a a creature of unknown origins, it becomes difficult to create emotional drama. It’s easy enough to create action and physical drama with a monster, but it’s doesn’t make sense for the beast to start having philosophical discussions with the characters.
Enter Sheriff Cam Donner. He’s the sheriff of Rose Valley, and he’s not too keen on inviting trouble on his watch. When a lamb gets ripped in half, he’d rather attribute the attack to coyotes just to keep the peace. It’s hard to confront a fearsome creature when the town’s chief protector isn’t onboard.
Sheriff Donner is a bully, which gravitated him to his station. He grew up with Jake, but their friendship dissolved long ago. The sheriff’s goal is primarily to keep things calm while he amasses power. He’s already convinced the mayor to kowtow to him, which allows him to absorb all of the responsibility in Rose Valley.
When there are sightings of the beast, and then attacks, however, Cam can’t ignore it in good conscience. Under his gruff exterior and self-absorbed demeanor seems to lie a man who truly wants to protect the citizens of Rose Valley.
Cam is one of my favorite characters in the book. He’s especially interesting because he never acts as a Point-of-View character, so the only way to get to know him is through the lens of others. This creates some surprising moments, because the PoV characters cannot always be trusted to deliver an accurate portrayal of Cam, due to their strained relationship with him.
The end result is a fun rollercoaster of emotion, wondering whether Sheriff Donner is aligned with Jake or not. Can he be trusted? Do his motivations run counter to Jake’s? Hopefully, the book will be published one day and you will all get to find out!