cover image The Shameless

The Shameless

Ace Atkins. Putnam, $27 (384p) ISBN 978-0-525-53946-9

In bestseller Atkins’s gritty ninth Quinn Colson novel (after 2018’s The Sinners), Colson, the sheriff of Tibbehah County, Miss., is alarmed by the growing popularity of Jimmy Vardaman, a gubernatorial candidate who dismisses accusations of racism as “fake news.” Vardaman has appeared on the fringes of Colson’s corruption investigations, but the sheriff has been unable to get sufficient evidence to bring charges. Colson hopes that will change after he gets custody of Wes Taggart, a lowlife who attempted to kill one of Colson’s friends, who he believes is connected with Vardaman. Meanwhile, Tashi Coleman, the host of a true crime podcast, has arrived in Tibbehah County to look into a 20-year-old mystery—the death of 15-year-old Brandon Taylor. Taylor went missing in the woods, only to be found a week later, dead of a gunshot wound. Tashi has doubts about the rigor of the investigation led by the sheriff at the time, Quinn’s uncle, Hamp Beckett. The suspense rises as the two cases converge. Atkins makes the thrilling plot accessible for first-timers, while further deepening both main and secondary characters. Series fans will be eager to see what’s next in store for Quinn. [em]Author tour. Agent: Esther Newberg, ICM. (July) [/em]