Now a Major Motion Picture, Lawless, starring Tom Hardy and Shia LaBeouf.
Based on the true story of his grandfather and two granduncles, Matt Bondurant's novel is a gripping tale of brotherhood, greed, and murder.
The Bondurant Boys were a notorious gang of roughnecks and moonshiners who ran liquor through Franklin County during Prohibition and after. The brothers played a central role in a major conspiracy trial and its violent end. In 1935, Sherwood Anderson, working on a magazine story, finds himself driving along the dusty red roads trying to find the brothers and break the silence that shrouds Franklin County.
In vivid, muscular prose, Matt Bondurant brings these men - their dark deeds, their long silences, their deep desires - to life. His understanding of the passion, violence, and desperation at the center of this world is both heartbreaking and magnificent.
©2008 Matt Bondurant; (P)2008 BBC Audio
"Bondurant endows this gritty story with all the puzzle-solving satisfactions of a mystery. It's a gripping, relentless tale, delivered in no-nonsense prose." (Publishers Weekly)
Reading and listening to be entertained... AND challenged!
I'd recommend The Wettest County to anyone. It will appeal to history buffs, people who like mystery and intrigue, and it has its tense, suspenseful, heart-stopping moments as well.
Though a semi-minor character my favorite is Howard Bondurant. The reason? It is clear he is a tortured soul, but the author never really elaborates in detail the reasons why. Interestingly, though clearly very troubled, Howard exudes a level of morality that is truly striking considering his chosen profession.
His cadence and delivery are very strong - it is obvious why he does what he does. What he brought to this story was a wide variety of accents and drawls common to the region and era making the listen truly authentic. Plus, in the few spots where he performs female dialogue he doesn't try to sound like a woman. I really hate it when narrators attempt this. Erik is top notch in the Wettest County.
Clearly it is Forrest... Can people, like they say with cats, have 9 lives?
The name of this very solid novel is "The Wettest County in the World", period. Just because it has been adapted to a screen play and the forthcoming movie is called "Lawless" let's not be disrespectful and confuse the issue. Do legitimate readers of literature refer to "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep" as Blade Runner? Audible... have some class.
I literally (no pun intended) went back to the beginning of the book the instant I finished it, to "read" it again, and am enjoying it just as much the second time around. There's much more here than just bootlegging--the time it takes place in itself; illness, culture, the Great Depression, farm life in general. It's a real history lesson. Bootlegging was not just a pasttime, but a career. The brutality that went on amazes me. From beginning to end, I was glued.
Travel Nurse with lots of car time.
A movie that was better than the book. The screen adaptation was an easier version to follow and enriched the characters far better than the book.
Writer & daddy.
The reader does a remarkable job telling this brutal tale. I was pulled back to that time and felt as if I was viewing the poverty, the greed, and the tragedy first hand. Well worth taking the time to read/listen to.
Great writing, but the story is dark and none of the main characters are likable.
Not that this is always a necessary ingredient, but Bondurant's fine writing draws the reader into the individual lives very well. But when you get there it's an uncomfortable place to be. Like a 1930 version of meth complete with the dealers, and the addicts, and you wind up thinking the whole cast needs to wipe each other out like some classic Tarantino movie.
Hard to follow along at times as the author "jumped around" in time from Chapter to Chapter. Listening on the road was distracting trying to keep a timeline of the story.
I would probably recommend waiting for the movie. I found a lot to like about the audiobook but nothing that would make me say to a friend, "You've got to hear this one."
The scene where Forrest got his throat cut and survived.
No, but it was very interesting to hear how white lightning affected the men who drank it.
After hearing the book, I am really looking forward to the movie.
Kudos to the author for writing about the moonshine "industry" in Franklin County VA. I think this would be especially enjoyable to those who are from the area. Wasn't really a fan of how the story was set up (personally thought Sherwood Anderson could have been left out of it entirely) and it dragged on a bit in parts but overall an interesting story and good narrator.
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