Okay, fiction fans, read this. Really. It’s wonderfully good. A gripping, beautifully written novel set during a real-life feud in 1890′s Alabama. Author Tom Franklin won an Edgar Award for his 1999 book of short stories Poachers, which I haven’t read, but which also won high praise from Otto Penzler who despite being my editor and friend is also probably the foremost expert on crime fiction in the world.
Hell At The Breech has crime novel elements as well, which give it its unputdownable narrative drive. It’s a sweeping historical tale of murder, deception, morality and coming of age. Terrific stuff.
If you read it on Kindle, as I did, beware – the novel ends at 90 percent… then there’s an appended short story, which is very good but only vaguely connected to the main story. Don’t know if this is in the print version.