The Third Season

Jack Payne Jones, Author GoldenIsle Publishers $21.95 (215p) ISBN 978-0-9666721-4-5
A wise old widower and his precocious five-year-old granddaughter bamboozle, confuse and occasionally abuse a drug ring bent on ripping their family-of-two apart in Jones's (Wagons in the Wind) latest. Elmer ""Poppy"" Goodhand is just about all little Spice has in the world after her mother, Jo, abandons her and takes up with Gus, a local drug dealer in small-town Action, Ga. Now that Jo is about to be released from jail, Poppy discovers that she and her beau have hatched a plot to use Spice as a decoy. The two go on the lam, scampering through peanut fields and cotton plantations, laying low in swamps and cellars, and making a game of outwitting their pursuers. Seemingly un-self-conscious about the unlikeliness of his plot, Jones rambles on good-naturedly, harvesting the narrative's strength in the byplay between laconic grandfather and wisecracking granddaughter. When he pauses for breath, it's to reflect on the disastrous effects of drugs and poverty on American family values; yet, ultimately, this is an engaging, feel-good novel about the virtue of making do. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 03/01/1999
Release date: 03/01/1999
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Paperback - 220 pages - 978-0-9666721-9-0
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