Hard Twisted

C. Joseph Greaves. Bloomsbury, $25 (304p) ISBN 978-1-60819-855-9
Greaves follows his debut, Hush Money (as Chuck Greaves), with this impressive fictional recounting of Depression-era drifter Clint Palmer’s real-life killing spree, told largely from the limited perspective of his 13-year-old girlfriend, Lottie Lucile Garret. Soon after the homeless Lottie meets him on the road in Oklahoma, her father disappears, and Lottie finds herself traveling alone with Clint through the American Southwest, gradually realizing that the ex-con is not just a charismatic, amoral hustler but a murderous psychopath. Their aimless, often harrowing odyssey sketches out a picture of 1934–1935 America struggling to cling to bedrock Christian values in the face of a precarious daily existence. Named the Best Historical Novel of 2010 in the SouthWest Writers International Writing Contest, this crime tale at times too closely recalls antecedents, from Horace McCoy to Cormac McCarthy, but otherwise shows Greaves as a strong literary voice who can render period with authority and violence without sensationalism. Agent: Antonella Iannarino, the David Black Agency. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 07/30/2012
Release date: 11/13/2012
Open Ebook - 304 pages - 978-1-60819-893-1
Paperback - 304 pages - 978-1-62040-069-2
Hardcover - 549 pages - 978-1-4104-5715-8
Compact Disc - 978-0-7927-9128-7
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