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A brilliantly layered novel of crime, character, and place from the two-time Edgar Award winner, Gold Dagger Award winner, and New York Times bestselling author of Sunset Limited.
Few writers in America today combine James Lee Burke's lush prose, crackling story lines, and tremendous sense of history and landscape. In Cimmaron Rose, longtime fans of the Dave Robicheaux series found that the struggles of Texas defense attorney Billy Bob Holland show Burke at his best in exploring classic American themes--the sometimes subtle, often violent strains between the haves and the have-nots; the collision of past and present; the inequities in the criminal justice system.
Heartwood is a kind of tree that grows in layers. And as Billy Bob's grandfather once told him, you do well in life by keeping the roots in a clear stream and not letting anyone taint the water for you. But in Holland's dusty little hometown of Deaf Smith, in the hill country north of Austin, local kingpin Earl Deitrich has made a fortune running roughshod and tainting anyone who stands in his way. Billy Bob has problems with Deitrich and his shamelessly callous demeanor, but can't shake the legacy of his passion for Deitrich's "heartbreak-beautiful" wife, Peggy Jean.
When Holland takes on the defense of Wilbur Pickett--a man accused of stealing an heirloom and three hundred thousand dollars in bonds from Deitrich's office--he finds himself up against not only Earl's power and influence, but also a past Billy Bob can't will away. A wonderfully realized novel, rich in Texas atmosphere and lore, and a dazzling portrait of the deadly consequences of self-delusion, Heartwood could only have been written by James Lee Burke, a writer in expert command of his craft.
From the Hardcover edition.
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Actor Will Patton gives a quirky performance in James Lee Burke's intricately layered story. Following his earlier novel, Cimarron Rose, Burke returns to Deaf Smith, Texas, offering his reluctant hero, defense attorney Billy Bob Holland, another shot at redemption. Representing a local loser caught in a web of lies, Holland faces Earl Dietrich, an unwelcome newcomer whose money, influence, and condescending attitude rub the lawyer against the grain: "There was nothing directly aggressive about Earl, but his conversation always had to do with himself, or what he owned." Patton narrates wonderfully, using the slow scratch of his voice and expert pacing to unravel Burke's modern-day mystery. Accentuated with musical transitions and subtle sound effects, the excellent narration and evocative writing render Heartwood an intriguing and enjoyable listen. (Running time: 5 hours, 4 cassettes) --George LaneyFrom the Back Cover:
Peggy Jean Deitrich smells of heat and roses, volunteers in the local library, and hides her bruises well. Once Billy Bob Holland made love to her in the woods above the river. Now Peggy Jean is married to the richest man in town. And Billy Bob, a former Texas Ranger who now defends criminals for a living, is out to destroy him.
Earl Deitrich has had his way with the town of Deaf Smith for years. Then Earl accused a hapless roustabout of a crime, and touched off a chain reaction of murder from the streets of Houston to the hill country around Billy Bob's ranch. Fueled by his memories and regrets, following a trail of shattered lives, Billy Bob knows that he must go after Earl with a vengeance. He just doesn't know how many people will get in the way -- or who will be the last to die....
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Book Description Orion, 1999. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0752821334