cover image The Fallen: A Quinn Colson Novel

The Fallen: A Quinn Colson Novel

Ace Atkins. Putnam, $27 (384p) ISBN 978-0-399-57671-3

One of President Trump’s most notorious off-color remarks appears in the first chapter of Edgar-finalist Atkins’s outstanding seventh crime novel featuring Army Ranger turned lawman Quinn Colson (after 2016’s The Innocents). Robber Rick Wilcox fires a gun in the air and threatens to grab women’s privates when he and the other members of his gang walk into a small-town bank wearing Trump masks. Quinn, who has recently been returned to the position of sheriff of Mississippi’s Tibbehah County, gets the news of the Trump bandits’ latest strike after a visit to Vienna’s Place, “a low-rent highway titty bar,” where the proprietress, Fannie Hatchcock, assaulted an overzealous customer with a hammer. The robberies reunite Quinn with Jon Holliday, a fed he first encountered when Holliday was infiltrating the corrupt political organization headed by local power broker Johnny Stagg. Atkins tosses in a missing persons case—Quinn’s sister Caddy, who runs an outreach program for abused women, asks him to look for two teenage girls—but the multiple plotlines don’t make the story too busy. As in recent books, Atkins lightens the mood with some humor, presenting a warts-and-all portrayal of a Southern community. Author tour. Agent: Esther Newberg, ICM. (July)