Archive for the ‘US South’ Category

THE RESERVOIR by John Milliken Thompson

Tommie Cluverius is on trial for murder in the first degree. The charge is that he killed Lillie Madison and threw her into a reservoir where she drowned. The year is 1885 and Richmond, Virginia is the scene of the crime. Did Tommie kill Lillie or was it suicide? Did someone else kill Lillie and try to pin the crime on Tommie? The outcome of the trial will determine whether Tommie lives or goes to the gallows.

June 21, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , , , ,  · Posted in: Debut Novel, Facing History, Mystery/Suspense, US South

THE RIDGE by Michael Koryta

Michael Koryta scores again with THE RIDGE, a thriller set in an isolated and rugged area of Eastern Kentucky. Inexplicable events are happening near a hilltop known as Blade Ridge. Sawyer County Deputy Sheriff Kevin Kimble and his colleagues get involved after an eccentric old drunk named Wyatt French is found dead in his lighthouse, an apparent suicide. No one understands why French spent time and money building a wooden lighthouse “in the middle of nowhere.” French had his reasons, but what he knew was so bizarre that no sane person would ever believe him.

June 10, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: Thriller/Spy/Caper, US South

THE BAYOU TRILOGY by Daniel Woodrell

WINTER’S BONE was one of the best crime films I saw in 2010. I discovered that it was based on the novel by Daniel Woodrell, and I was surprised that I’d never heard that name before. But I’m apparently not the only one, and the success of WINTER’S BONE is guaranteed to bring this author new readers. Woodrell is best known as a writer of Ozark Noir, but the Bayou Trilogy is, as the title suggests, set in a different geographical region. The trilogy is composed of three novels from Woodrell’s early writing career: UNDER THE BRIGHT LIGHTS, MUSCLE FOR THE WING and THE ONES YOU DO. The protagonist of the trilogy is Cajun cop Rene Shade. Shade hails from the fictional Louisiana city of San Bruno: “a city of many neighborhoods, Frogtown and Pan Fry being the largest and most fabled, and great numbing stretches of anonymous, bland, and nearly affluent subdivisions.”

April 28, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , ,  · Posted in: Mystery/Suspense, Noir, Sleuths Series, US South, y Award Winning Author

WITCHES ON THE ROAD TONIGHT by Sheri Holman

Witches on the Road Tonight by Sheri Holman is a tale of intergenerational witches that takes place in four different time frames between the 1930’s and the present. The plot moves back and forth between generations and characters. This requires a bit of concentration, but is well worth the effort. It has something of the fears that rise from ghost stories told around a campfire.

March 3, 2011 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , , ,  · Posted in: Horror, Reading Guide, Speculative (Beyond Reality), US South

THE IMMORTAL LIFE OF HENRIETTA LACKS by Rebecca Skloot

Rebecca Skloot’s THE IMMORTAL LIFE OF HENRIETTA LACKS is an enthralling look at the origin of HeLa cells that grew “with [such] mythological intensity,” that they “seemed unstoppable.” They were a “continuously dividing line of cells all descended from one original sample” acquired from Henrietta Lacks, a black woman who suffered from a particularly virulent form of cervical cancer complicated by syphilis…Neither she nor her family had any idea that the cells obtained from her cervix in 1951 would eventually number in the trillions and become a vital part of medical research all over the world.

December 21, 2010 · Judi Clark · 2 Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: 2010 Favorites, Class - Race - Gender, Non-fiction, US South, y Award Winning Author

LORD OF MISRULE by Jaimy Gordon

Most of us, when we think of horse racing, conjure up a mint-juleps-and-roses vision of the Kentucky Derby or perhaps, Churchill Downs, attended by jewel-studded rich folk dressed up in their finery with cash to burn.

But at the rock-bottom end of the sport, horse racing is a whole other world – a world inhabited by down-on-their-luck trainers and jockeys, loan sharks and crooks, gyps and hotwalkers. This is the world Jaimy Gordon takes on – Indian Mound Downs, where the horses are mostly aging, drugged, or lame and the trainers are as crooked and cynical as they come.

December 2, 2010 · Judi Clark · No Comments
Tags: , ,  · Posted in: 2011 Favorites, Contemporary, Literary, National Book Award Winner, US South, y Award Winning Author