“Brilliant . . . hits you fast and very hard. His driving, uncompromising prose thrusts a light into a nightmarish part of America lesser writers flee. First-class, unforgettable!”—James Dickey
It’s Easter weekend in Macon, Georgia, and Connie Holtzclaw, a goodhearted ex-boxer and small-time loser, dreams of carrying his girlfriend away to a ranch in Montana. His brother Carl, though, has other ideas. He wants a big score, and he persuades Connie to join in a kidnapping—a sure thing, a rich local college kid whose mother will do anything to get him back. For a moment it seems Connie may achieve his dream. Then Tommy Wilson, a murderous gangster, crazy as only a pure American product can be, decides to up the stakes. In this gritty novel of loss, violence, and redemption, a distinguished American poet explores the dark world last seen in the novels of James M. Cain, where death lurks everywhere and a new beginning is always just out of reach.
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