Friday, October 8, 2010

Been Franklin?

Over at Ransom Notes, I'm talking about Tom Franklin's new one, Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter. I loved this book. Not as wild as Hell at the Breech or Smonk, (is anything as wild as that one?), but strong and sturdy and a dark undercurrent that might carry you away, if you're not anchored to something solid. Every night, Larry Ott's mother prays that God send her odd son one special friend, just for him and unbeknownst to her, Larry thinks He has in Silas Jones. When Larry's father finds out about the friendship between the two boys, he plays them against each other till their bond is broken and Larry is once again all alone. Twenty-plus years later, Larry gets another friend. Careful what you pray for. One of the things I love about Franklin's books are his sociopaths. And this one's got a doosey, or two, or three, I don't want to give anything away, but this one comes with my personal stamp of approval. Whatcha waitin for?

Speaking of Franklin, I'm planning a trip to see him in Arkansas in December, but Rod Norman put the notion in my head that he might drop in on the proceedings in Franklin, TN. Sunday where his buddy William Gay will be signing with Sonny Brewer. Will it happen? Doesn't matter, Scott Phillips and I, (and Rod & co.) will be heading out there to meet the legend one way or another.

Then, I've got to hurry home, 'cause Monday morning I'm supposed to speak to a couple of middle school classes. I've never done anything like that before. I'm more than a wee bit scared. I hated middle school and middle schoolers have always hated me, but here I go anyhow. I have a sneaking suspicion that I'm being asked under false pretenses. I'm supposed to speak about being a writer, but I'm afraid I may actually be the cautionary tale portion of their education. Whatever.

And in N@B news, Thursday, Oct. 21st's event has been pushed forward one hour. We'll be starting at seven, not eight, in an effort not to run afoul of the live music at The Delmar. Man, I still cringe thinking of Sean Doolittle and Pinckney Benedict having to raise their voices to be heard over that. Sorry guys. Once again, Jonathan Woods, Cameron Ashley, Chris La Tray and Scott Phillips reading from his brand new book Rut, out Oct. 25 from Stona Fitch's Concord Free Press! Be there.

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