Synopses & Reviews
March, snow still dusting the road, Deputy Sheriff Jimmy Doe is called in to back up a dangle-law pullover. The driver has an eagle feather hanging from his rearview. The Sheriff radios Doe to know if he'd rather do the search as the guy's a longhair (American Indian). Doe declines. Soon afterward, Doe hears shots over the two-way. The Sheriff's dead, the longhair's gone. Photos from the Sheriff's cruiser show two decaying corpses in the getaway's trunk.
All the Beautiful Sinners is Doe's story -- his relentless investigative Texas road trip tailing a killer while reluctantly unearthing the truth of his own identity. The Tin Man, a complex and brilliantly realized sociopath, needs just one more victim to complete his bloody Grand Guignol. His signature is the abduction of pairs of children during tornados -- the chilling real-life personification of a little-known Indian myth. The victims' parents swearing that the tornados take human form, spiriting away their children. Always Indian children -- one brother, one sister.
Numbingly patient, the Tin Man has expertly toyed with the FBI's "profilers" and "crime scene investigators" over his fifteen-year abduction spree. But now he's begun to murder the maturing young men and women in his care. For some reason, he's heating up the cold cases and drawing the enemy authorities closer.
With the visceral chill of the film Se7en, the meticulous investigative puzzle of The Bone Collector, and the realistic and dynamic whydunit examination of Red Dragon, All the Beautiful Sinners launches the commercial career of an unnervingly talented literary voice.
"Jones's first novel roars into the literary landscape like a 1970s muscle car hell-bent on nothing less than genius....A hallucinatory, beguiling ride through a world both painfully real and utterly hypnotic." The Houston Chronicle
"Jones has exploded the conventional rhythms of novelistic narrative....A richly inventive writer." The Austin Chronicle
Deputy Sheriff Jim Doe plunges into a renegade manhunt after the town's sheriff is gunned down. But unbeknownst to him, the suspect--an American Indian--holds chilling connections to the disappearance of Doe's sister years before. And the closer Doe gets to the fugitive's trail, the more he realizes that his own involvement in the case is hardly coincidental. A descendant of the Blackfeet Nation himself, Doe keeps getting mistaken for the killer he's chasing. And when the FBI's finest three profilers descend on the case, Doe suspects the hunt has only just begun.
But beneath the novel's pyrotechnic plotting, the deeper psychic cadences of Stephen Graham Jones's prose take hold. His specific imagery and telling detail coalesce into the literary equivalent of an Edward Hopper painting. But like the other seminal works in the genre (Fight Club, Red Dragon), All The Beautiful Sinners will unnerve you, and it will then send you back to page one to experience its mysteries all over again.
About the Author
Stephen Graham Jones is the author of The Fast Red Road: A Plainsong, which won the Independent Publishers Award for Multicultural Fiction. A recipient of a 2002 Literature Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, he has published dozens of short stories in a wide variety of literary magazines, including Open City, Alaska Quarterly Review, Meridian, Georgetown Review, Cutbank and Black Warrior Review. An assistant professor of English at Texas Tech University, Jones is a member of the Blackfeet Nation. He lives with his wife and two children in West Texas.