Today I'm passing on the ever inspirational political scene to pay my respects to my drinking buddy, Dusty Rhoades. This is his new book, Breaking Cover, a stand alone from his Jack Keller series but very much another chapter in his continuing redneck noir oeuvre.
A lot of other writers have already weighed in, and I don't want to cover well-worn ground, but Dusty does a couple of things in here that deserve some attention. One is the creation of a protagonist name Tony Wolf and yet, in my opinion, it's not really Tony who is central to the plot. That strong moral center belongs to Deputy Buckthorn, a small town cop who finds himself in the middle of a war between a rogue FBI agent, homicidal bikers with a sadistic streak as wide as Pamlico Sound, a treacherous mole within the bureau and a violent world fueled by meth, testosterone and cordite.
I say it's Buckthorn's story, even though Wolf is the near superhuman ass kicker, because Buckthorn is just an average guy who is asked to step up and do what has to be done, and I find that more compelling. But maybe that's just me.
Dusty also does a few interesting things like switching time and POV in the second part of the novel, but I think if we get back to Pine Lake again, it will be Buckthorn who takes us there.
But I could be wrong.
You can hear Dusty on The State of Things, a radio interview program out of WUNC. You can listen to it here.