Friday, April 15, 2011

Review: The Bayou Trilogy by Daniel Woodrell

  • Author:  Daniel Woodrell
  • Paperback: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Mulholland Books (April 28, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316133655
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316133654

From Publishers Weekly


Starred Review. Collected in a single volume for the first time, Woodrell's three stellar novels featuring Det. Rene Shade, an ex-boxer turned cop, provide entrée into the Louisiana swamp town of Saint Bruno, a place where "tempers went on the prowl and relief was driving a hard bargain." Woodrell (Winter's Bone) injects Shade's life and various cases with both humor and brutal violence. In Bright Lights (1986), the investigation into a city councilman's murder mushrooms into a corruption scandal, with Shade feeling pressure from above for a quick—and predetermined—result. Muscle for the Wing (1988) finds Shade up against a gang of ex-cons, hell-bent on wrestling control of Saint Bruno's less-than-legal action. Shade and his two brothers—bar owner Tip and district attorney Francois—are reunited with their long-absent paterfamilias, John X., in The Ones You Do (1992), in which John X. returns to Saint Bruno with a 10-year-old daughter and a killer on his trail. There's poetry in Woodrell's mayhem, each novel—and scene—full of gritty and memorable Cajun details. (Apr.)
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Product Description


A hard-hitting, critically acclaimed trilogy of crime novels from an author about whom New York magazine has written, "What people say about Cormac McCarthy ... goes double for [Woodrell]. Possibly more."

In the parish of St. Bruno, sex is easy, corruption festers, and double-dealing is a way of life. Rene Shade is an uncompromising detective swimming in a sea of filth.

As Shade takes on hit men, porn kings, a gang of ex-cons, and the ghosts of his own checkered past, Woodrell's three seminal novels pit long-entrenched criminals against the hard line of the law, brother against brother, and two vastly different sons against a long-absent father.

THE BAYOU TRILOGY highlights the origins of a one-of-a-kind author, a writer who for over two decades has created an indelible representation of the shadows of the rural American experience and has steadily built a devoted following among crime fiction aficionados and esteemed literary critics alike. 

About the Author


Five of Daniel Woodrell's eight published novels were selected as New York Times Notable Books of the Year. Tomato Red won the PEN West Award for the Novel in 1999. Woodrell lives in the Ozarks near the Arkansas line with his wife, Katie Estill.

Excellent article here:

My Review

Daniel Woodrell is the author of Winter's Bone which was made into a critically acclaimed film of the same name.  He is based in West Plains, Missouri in the heart of the Ozarks.   Mulholland Books has rereleased three of Woodrell's novels featuring Detective Rene Shade in this one volume:  The Bayou Trilogy.  The three novels are 1986's Under The Bright Lights, 1988's Muscle For The Wing and 1992's The Ones You Do.  The novels are set in fictional St. Bruno, Louisiana in the heart of Cajun country.  Crime and corruption abound.  These three stories are very gritty but realistic tales. Mr. Woodrell's writing style is amazing.

I highly recommend this trilogy of stories from one of the US south's most powerful writers. 

No comments:

Post a Comment