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A Fine Dark Line

Joe R. Lansdale: A Fine Dark Line (USA 2015)

From the Publisher:
13-year-old Stanley Mitchel Jr. spends most of his time helping his family run the town’s drive-in movie theater, reading ten-cent comics, and playing with his dog Nub. Life in East Texas circa 1958 is not very exciting until Stanley discovers a stash of old, crumbling love letters in a pile of burnt rubble behind the drive-in. As Stanley reads through the letters, he finds himself in the middle of a town mystery and discovering the secrets of his sleepy town. Stanley, with the help of the old projectionist and his older sister, uncovers the identities of the people who penned the letters and sheds light on a shocking 20 year-old murder plot. As Stanley unearths more and more truths, he realizes the injustices of life in East Texas in the 1950’s including class, race, gender, and the cruelty of unrequited love. Stanley feels betrayed by his family and his town as he takes a closer look at the dark truth and refuses to allow himself to succumb to the darkness.

Joe R. Lansdale: A Fine Dark Line. Pandi Press, ISBN: 9780986259418 (July, 2015), 296 p., $16.95.

 

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A Fine Dark Line

Joe R. Lansdale: A Fine Dark Line (UK 2007)

From the Publisher:
It is the summer of 1958 in Dewmont, Texas, a town the great American postwar boom passed by. The kids listen to rockabilly on the radio and waste their weekends at the Dairy Queen. And an undetected menace simmers under the heat that clings to the skin like molasses...For thirteen-year-old Stanley Mitchel, the end of innocence comes with his discovery of the mysterious long-ago demise of two very different young women. In his quest to unravel the truth about their tragic fates, Stanley finds a protector in Buster Lighthorse Smith, a black, retired Indian-reservation cop and a sage on the finer points of Sherlock Holmes, the blues, and life's faded dreams. But not every buried thing stays dead. And on one terrifying night of rushing creek water and thundering rain, an arcane, murderous force will rise from the past to threaten the Stanley and everything he holds dear. Vintage Lansdale, A FINE DARK LINE brims with exquisite suspense, powerful characterizations, and the vibrant evocation of a lost time.

Joe R. Lansdale: A Fine Dark Line. Phoenix, ISBN: 9780753821916 (March, 2007), 307 p., £6.99 (?).

 

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A Fine Dark Line

Joe R. Lansdale: A Fine Dark Line (UK 2006)

From the Publisher:
It is the summer of 1958 in Dewmont, Texas, a town the great American postwar boom passed by. The kids listen to rockabilly on the radio and waste their weekends at the Dairy Queen. And an undetected menace simmers under the heat that clings to the skin like molasses...For thirteen-year-old Stanley Mitchel, the end of innocence comes with his discovery of the mysterious long-ago demise of two very different young women. In his quest to unravel the truth about their tragic fates, Stanley finds a protector in Buster Lighthorse Smith, a black, retired Indian-reservation cop and a sage on the finer points of Sherlock Holmes, the blues, and life's faded dreams. But not every buried thing stays dead. And on one terrifying night of rushing creek water and thundering rain, an arcane, murderous force will rise from the past to threaten the Stanley and everything he holds dear. Vintage Lansdale, A FINE DARK LINE brims with exquisite suspense, powerful characterizations, and the vibrant evocation of a lost time.

Joe R. Lansdale: A Fine Dark Line. Weidenfeld & Nicolson, ISBN: 9780297845591 (May, 2006), 307 p., £16.99.

 

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A Fine Dark Line

Joe R. Lansdale: A Fine Dark Line (USA 2003)

From the Publisher:
It is the summer of 1958 in Dewmont, Texas, a town the great American postwar boom passed by. The kids listen idly to rockabilly on the radio and waste their weekends at the Dairy Queen. And an undetected menace simmers under the heat that clings to the skin like molasses...

For thirteen-year-old Stanley Mitchell, the end of innocence comes with his discovery of the mysterious long-ago demise of two very different young women. In his quest to unravel the truth about their tragic fates, Stanley finds a protector in Buster Lighthorse Smith, a black, retired Indian-reservation cop and a sage on the finer points of Sherlock Holmes, the blues, and life's faded dreams. But not every buried thing stays dead. And on one terrifying night of rushing creek water and thundering rain, an arcane, murderous force will rise from the past to threaten the boy in a harrowing rite of passage...

Joe R. Lansdale: A Fine Dark Line. Warner Books, ISBN: 0446691674 (October, 2003), 307 p., $12.95.

 

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A Fine Dark Line

Joe R. Lansdale: A Fine Dark Line (USA 2003)

From the Publisher:
The time is the summer of 1958. The place is Dewmont, Texas, a town that the great American postwar boom has somehow passed by. A sad, hollow beat trails the kids who tune into rockabilly on the radio and waste their weekends at the Dairy Queen. And an undetected menace simmers under the heat that clings to the skin like thin molasses.

For blissfully ignorant thirteen-year-old Stanley Mitchell, the end of innocence comes with his discovery of an old trove of passionate yet troubled love letters that lead him to a long-ago house fire and the tragic deaths of two very different young women. Obsessed with investigating their fates, Stanley finds a guide and mentor in black, elderly Buster Lighthouse Smith, a retired Indian Reservation policeman who now runs the projector at the drive-in theater owned by Stanley's parents. The laconic Buster tutors Stanley on the finer points of Sherlock Holmes, the blues, and life's lost dreams.But not every buried thing stays dead. And in one terrifying night of rushing creek water and thundering rain, an arcane, murderous force will suddenly rise from the past to threaten the boy - and test the limits of Buster's strength and wisdom. In the end the old man teaches Stanley a lesson that will haunt him always, about the forever short distance between living flesh and the dust from which it came.

Joe R. Lansdale: A Fine Dark Line. Mysterious Press, ISBN: 0892967293 (January, 2003), 307 p., $24.95.

 

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