In a small Mississippi town, two men are torn apart by circumstance and reunited by tragedy in this resonant new novel from the award-winning author of the critically-acclaimed Hell at the Breech.
Larry Ott and Silas '32' Jones were unlikely boyhood friends. Larry was the child of lower middle-class white parents, Silas the son of a poor, single, black mother -- their worlds as different as night and day. Yet a special bond developed between them in Chabot, Mississippi. But within a few years, tragedy struck. In high school, a girl who lived up the road from Larry had gone to the drive-in movie with him and nobody had seen her again. Her stepfather tried to have Larry arrested but no body was found and Larry never confessed. The incident shook up the town, including Silas, and the bond the boys shared was irrevocably broken.
Almost thirty years have passed. Larry, a mechanic, lives a solitary existence in Chabot, never able to rise above the whispers of suspicion, the looks of blame that have shadowed him. Silas left home to play college baseball, but now he's Chabot's constable. The men have few reasons to cross paths, and they rarely do -- until fate intervenes again.
Another teenage girl has disappeared, causing rumors to swirl once again. Now, two men who once called each other friend are finally forced to confront the painful past they've buried for too many years.
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"Starred Review. Edgar Award winner Franklin (Hell at the Breech, 2003) renders luminous prose and a cast of compelling characters in this moody, masterful entry." - Booklist
"The Southern atmosphere is rich, but while this novel has the makings of an engaging crime drama... [it generates] far more fizz than pop." - Publishers Weekly "Starred Review. A ripping good mystery, this novel also has depth and a subtle literary side, as the local area comes to life through the writer's cinematic descriptive phrases and a large and colorful cast of supporting characters. Highly recommended." - Library Journal
"Beautiful writing, a spot-on sense of place, wickedly funny dialogue, and an emotionally potent story charge this highly original, literary crime offering from master stylist Tom Franklin." - George Pelecanos
"Lyrical, morally complex, superbly crafted, Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter further validates Tom Franklin's status as one of Americas best writers." - Ron Rash, author of Serena
"A new Tom Franklin novel is always a reason to get excited, but Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter is more - a cause for celebration. What a great novel by a great novelist." - Dennis Lehane, author of The Given Day
"Lately I've been wondering why, in an age when every new novel is hyped as a revolution of one sort or another, the classic trifecta of talent, heart, and a bone-deep sense of storytelling so rarely appears. But here it is: Tom Franklin's Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter. It's a masterful performance, deftly rendered and deeply satisfying. For days on end, I woke with this story on my mind." - David Wroblewski, author of The Story of Edgar Sawtelle
The information about Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter shown above was first featured in "The BookBrowse Review" - BookBrowse's online-magazine that keeps our members abreast of notable and high-profile books publishing in the coming weeks. In most cases, the reviews are necessarily limited to those that were available to us ahead of publication. If you are the publisher or author of this book and feel that the reviews shown do not properly reflect the range of media opinion now available, please send us a message with the mainstream media reviews that you would like to see added.
Tom Franklin is the author of Poachers: Stories, Hell at the Breech, and Smonk. Winner of a 2001 Guggenheim Fellowship, he teaches in the University of Mississippis MFA program and lives in Oxford, MI, with his wife, the poet Beth Ann Fennelly, and their children.
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