BookBrowse Reviews The Killing Hills by Chris Offutt

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The Killing Hills

by Chris Offutt

The Killing Hills by Chris Offutt X
The Killing Hills by Chris Offutt
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     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Jun 2021, 240 pages
    Paperback:
    Jun 21, 2022, 240 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Amanda Ellison
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A cinematic, slow-burn detective noir in which borderline anti-hero Mick Hardin endeavors to track down a killer.

The personified hills of the novel's title foreshadow the mood of this brooding and ominous tale. Infused with colorful local lore, the story's backdrop is the hills and hollows ("hollers") of rural Kentucky, where the law — represented by protagonist Mick Hardin's sister Linda — exists alongside lawlessness, embodied by a cast of immediately recognizable archetypes.

In standard noir tradition, Chris Offutt's narrative commences with the discovery of a female murder victim: While out roaming the hollers, septuagenarian and former janitor Mr. Tucker stumbles across the corpse of 46-year-old widow Veronica "Nonnie" Johnson. The crime scene is noted as a "pretty place to die." The natural beauty of the surroundings juxtaposes sharply with the horror of the violated corpse.

Enter Mick Hardin. Not quite the outsider of traditional noir tropes, Hardin is nevertheless an ...

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