Tuesday, April 4, 2017

A Noirish Tale Set in the Dark Underbelly of Northern Florida

All things considered, Judah Cannon probably should have just stayed in prison. Instead, once released, he discovers that no one has come to pick him up, which should be the first clue as to where he ranks with his bottom-feeding family and his on-again, off-again wife. That notwithstanding, he makes his way home to the small rural town of Silas in northern Florida. His preference would be to make an honest life for himself and for the woman he has loved all his life, his childhood friend, Ramey Barrow.

Fat chance.

As soon as Judah arrives home, his low-life father and brothers rope him into another of their half-baked criminal schemes. It involves robbing a down-at-the-heels biker gang called the Scorpions of $150,000 in drug money. The bikers are in league with a charismatic preacher named Sister Tulah, and when the Cannons rip off the bikers, Sister Tulah determines to bring down the wrath of God--or at least the wrath of Sister Tulah--upon both the Cannons and the hapless bikers who lost her money.

What follows is a dark gritty tale that explores the bonds of family ties and the compelling desire for retribution. The Cannons, Sister Tulah and the Scorpions are thrown into a bloody Mixmaster of violence and revenge that will take a very heavy toll on the innocent and the guilty alike. The story brings to mind the backwoods noir of writers like Daniel Woodrell, and while it's hard to find any sympathetic characters in this tale, it's also impossible to look away.

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