Synopses & Reviews
Middling historian Lucas Page visits St. Louis to give a sparsely attended readingnothing out of the ordinary. Except among the yawning attendees is someone he did not expect: Lola Faye Gilroy, the “other woman” he has long blamed for his fathers murder decades earlier. Reluctantly, Luke joins Lola Faye for a drink. As one drink turns into several, these two battered souls relive, from their different perspectives, the most searing experience of their lives. Slowly but surely, the hotel bar dissolves around them and they are transported back to the tiny southern town where this defining momenta violent crime of passionis turned in the light once more to reveal flaws in the old answers. As it turns out, there is much Luke doesnt know. And what he doesnt know can hurt him. Trapped in an increasingly intense emotional exchange, and with no place to go save back into his own dark past, Luke struggles to gain control of an ever more threatening conversation, to discover why Lola Faye has come and what she is afterbefore it is too late. A taut literary thriller in the gothic tradition of Master of the Delta.
In 1954 Mississippi, Jack Branch returns to his fathers Delta estate, Great Oaks, to perform an act of noblesse oblige: teaching at the local high school.While conducting a class on evil throughout history, Jack is shocked to discover that his unassuming student Eddie is the son of the Coed Killer, a notorious local murderer. Jack feels compelled to mentor the boy, encouraging Eddie to examine his fathers crime and using his own good name to open the doors that Eddies lineage cant. But when the investigation turns in an unexpected direction, Jack finds himself questioning Eddies motivesand his own.
As the deadly consequences of Jacks actions fall inescapably into place, Thomas H. Cook masterfully reveals the darker truths that lurk in the recesses of small-town lives and in the hearts of well-intentioned men.
About the Author
THOMAS H. COOK is the author of twenty-one novels and two works of nonfiction. He has been nominated for the Edgar Award seven times in five different categories, including Best Novel for Red Leaves,
which was also nominated for the British Crime Writers Associations Duncan Lawrie Dagger and won the Barry for Best Novel. The Chatham School Affair
won the Edgar for Best Novel. He lives in New York City and on Cape Cod.