The Publisher's summary reads like a romance novel when this is is classic James Lee Burke: Intellent story telling based on deep introspection and hu..Show More »man nature. Dark poetry in hot, steamy Texas in the time when "Negro" was considered polite language and Hispanics were ignored. A preclude to Rain Gods, it explains many character mysteries and painful memories. Will Patton, the narrator, layers language with meaning and tonality like silk over callouses.
The best writer teams up with the best narrator for an enjoyable audio book. This book is similar to No Country For Old Men. Just similar but a very d..Show More »ifferent story and it is better in several ways. For one it is twice as long so you get twice as much enjoyment. Two there are some nice characters in this book. Sheriff Hackberry Holland for one but every time they said his name I thought Huckleberry Hound and chuckled. Strange name. Will Patton does a super job as usual and I only wish he could go back and read all Burke's books. There are many of them but they are useless to me with other narrators. Pretty convoluted and fast paced. Worth a credit.
Most of the reviews I've read thus far, in spite of the disparity they contain, have valid points. I'll offer what I think is probably most helpful t..Show More »o someone considering this book: Burke is flat out a magnificent writer, his command of language, his artistic prose, his adeptness at continuity, and his strong characters. I don't know that anyone, besides Cormac McCarthy, can tell a such a raw story more beautifully, which is some feat when it comes to describing horrific gore and violence. But he does so in a disconnected slow motion way that makes it tolerable and crucial to the story. He does not seem to worry about abridgement--and why should he? People crave fast action, in-your-face stories, and Burke doesn't write for that market. He could be accused of filling the pages with, as one reviewer put it, "kitchen sink" characters and plots--so may be best enjoyed in small doses rather than devoured in a 16 hr. marathon. (*Possibly consider the abridged edition?) This is not fast food, but rather a dining experience. It is intense, rich, and can give you something like heartburn if you consume it all at one sitting; you need to walk away from this feast every now and then to avoid overload. The landscapes are so vividly described you all most choke on the dust, the characters, especially Hackberry (who ironically accuses himself of speaking too many "idle thoughts") is amazingly sculpted by Burke. This is not a book that will sit nicely in your head, but savored in bits is a great read. Will Patton is flawless in his narration, where in Rain Gods (previous novel about Preacher Collins) I thought his twang was heavy and distracting. If you know what your getting in for, I highly recommend.