In the parish of St. Bruno, sex is easy, corruption festers, and double-dealing is a way of life. Rene Shade is an uncompromising detective swimming in a sea of filth.
As Shade takes on hit men, porn kings, a gang of ex-cons, and the ghosts of his own checkered past, Woodrell’s three seminal novels pit long-entrenched criminals against the hard line of the law, brother against brother, and two vastly different sons against a long-absent father.
The Bayou Trilogy highlights the origins of a one-of-a-kind author, a writer who for over two decades has created an indelible representation of the shadows of the rural American experience and has steadily built a devoted following among crime fiction aficionados and esteemed literary critics alike.
©1986 Daniel Woodrell (Under the Bright Lights); 1988 by Daniel Woodrell (Muscle for the Wing); 1992 by Daniel Woodrell (The Ones You Do) (P)2011 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
This was an engaging listen. Any fan of James Lee Burke would probably enjoy it. Probably better than Burke: no clumsy love scenes or irritating politics / social commentary.
Bronson Pinchot over-does his voicings, though, and most of his women characters sound about the same: one combination or another of drunk, insane, or brain-damaged. He's a talented narrator, but someone should have suggested he dial it down a little here and there.
Overall, well worth the time and the credit.
The dialogue, characters, & narration.
Not for the faint of heart, this trilogy contains some real heavyweight writing. I finished it today, and I'm missing Woodrell's world of St. Bruno. This was a good choice.
I've long been a fan of every one of James Lee Burke and Will Patton collaboration but this one is better. Woodrell's trilogy has just become one of my favorite audio books. Pinchot's interpretation was on target with the vocal inflections that I've encountered in the bayou country. Wonderful, colorful, literary slice of the downside of bayou life. I do hope there is more to come from Woodrell & Pinchot.
These are fast paced, tense stories. There is nothing here that doesn't need to be here. Everything sizzles. Great narration. Good action. Good characters. Good read. You won't regret it.
I found the tone of the story, the characters, and the narration to be unrelenting downers, without enough to hold my interest. I expect more than to just bear witness to what seemed to be 1. people who don't respect each other, or their jobs, and 2. a place that has few redeeming qualities to one interested in what happens there. I read some gritty ones too--the thing that they need to have to hold me is human interest.
I have read all of James Lee Burke's Robicheaux novels, and wonder that other reviews find these comparable, other than being set in So.LA. What grabs me in Burke's novels is a protagonist (and the people close to him) with qualities a reader can empathize with; they aren't just depressives living depressing lives facing depressing circumstances.
Perhaps I didn't stick with it long enough to find a redeeming value in the Bayou Trilogy--it just didn't happen soon enough to not lose me and make me feel I'd wasted my Audible credits.
Though these novels were written in the 80s and early 90s I just discovered them recently. I know Woodrell's work from "Winter's Bone" as a film, but had never read one of his books. The writing is simply fantastic. Very true to the region, finely crafted dialogue and simple but engaging storylines. Bronson Pinchot has become one of my very favorite narrators. His ability to vocalize different characters and make each sound unique is fantastic. Two thumbs up from this reader.
I originally purchased this book because it was narrated by Bronson Pinchot, whose work I have really come to enjoy. Although this is not his best work, he does an excellent job of individuating several different male characters with similar regional accents. He isn't so successful with the female characters.
The three novellas in this work were all very good. They all function well-enough on their own, but seem to fit together in a single volume. Although the protagonist is a detective, these are not traditional detective novels. These are exciting, well-written stories in which the main character just happens to be a detective.
In the fictional Parish of St. Bruno, Woodrell has created a living, breathing world of humid, dirty, dangerous cities over territory that is as much water as land.
Surprisingly good. Hard-edged, but with obvious heart.
Woodrell has an excellent ear for dialogue. His settings are first rate. And he writes a good yarn. My only complaint is that most, if not all of the characters speak with the same voice, using the same colloquialisms.
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