Category Archives: Ace Atkins

Review: The Fallen by Ace Atkins

Title: The Fallen by Ace Atkins
Quinn Colson Series Book Seven
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery
Length: 365 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through Penguin’s First to Read Program

Summary:

A classic southern tale of backroom deals, tainted honor, dysfunctional family, high-stakes greed—and everyday heroism—from the New York Times–bestselling author.

Mississippi sheriff Quinn Colson had to admit he admired the bank robbers. A new bank was hit almost every week, and the robbers rushed in and out with such skill and precision it reminded him of raids he’d led back in Afghanistan and Iraq when he was an army ranger. In fact, it reminded him so much of the techniques in the Ranger Handbook that he couldn’t help wondering if the outlaws were former Rangers themselves.

And that was definitely going to be a problem. If he stood any chance of catching them, he was going to need the help of old allies, new enemies, and a lot of luck. The enemies he had plenty of. It was the allies and the luck that were going to be in woefully short supply.

Review:

In Ace Atkins’ seventh installment in the Quinn Colson series,  The Fallen, Tibbehah County, Mississippi is once again a hotbed of illegal activity which runs the gamut of bank robberies, missing teenage girls and an underlying corruption that Sheriff Quinn Colson just cannot seem to stay ahead of.

When bank robbers Rick Wilcox, Jonas Cord and their buddy Opie make an ill-fated decision to rob Jericho First National Bank, they are certain they will get away with their crime. However, instead of a clueless small town police force, their crime falls under the jurisdiction of Sheriff Quinn Colson and assistant Sheriff Lillie Virgil who have proven time and again they are a formidable crime fighting duo. Colson correctly deduces the men are former military and with few clues to go on, he turns to federal agent Jon Holliday who does not have any more information about the crew than Quinn and Lillie.

Interspersed with the investigation into the bank robbery are a couple of story arcs set in the local community. Quinn’s sister Caddy is worried about two missing teenagers that she has been trying to locate under the Sheriff’s radar. Strip bar owner Fannie Hathcock is running up against good ole boy Skinner whose Southern Christian values are greatly offended by her establishment.  The search for the missing girls leads straight to Fannie’s strip joint and ultimately, the latest round of corruption that is attempting to gain a toehold in Tibbehah County.

In between the investigation of the bank robbery and fighting petty crimes in the county, Quinn reunites with childhood friend Maggie Powers who has recently moved to town with her nine year old son Brandon. As they reminisce about their innocent exploits, a simmering passion threatens to explode into full blown passion but since Maggie is in the midst of a messy divorce, they attempt to keep their relationship platonic.

When Quinn begins putting the pieces of the various puzzles together, Lillie’s concerns about his objectivity lead her to make a surprising decision about her future.  When the multiple  plotlines finally converge into a violent showdown, she concedes Quinn’s suspicions are, indeed correct, and her expertise is instrumentally in bringing the siege to an end.  In the aftermath, will Lillie change her mind about the events she set into motion during a moment of frustration?

The Fallen is another well-plotted mystery with a storyline that is an accurate reflection of the pervasive political mindset of the deep South today.  Ace Atkins lightens the mood with some laugh out loud funny one-liners as Quinn and Lillie take aim at the corruption and crime that threaten to destroy Tibbehah County. Although this latest release is the seventh installment in the Quinn Colson series, it can easily be read as a standalone.  However, I have to warn readers that the novel’s tantalizing conclusion will leave them  impatiently awaiting the next book in this fantastic series.

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Filed under Ace Atkins, Contemporary, Mystery, Quinn Colson Series, Rated B+, Review, The Fallen

The Ranger by Ace Atkins

Title: The Ranger by Ace Atkins
Quinn Colson Novel
Publisher: Putnam Adult
Genre: Mystery, Contemporary
Length: 352 pages
Book Rating: B

Review Copy Obtained from Publisher Through NetGalley

Summary:

From the acclaimed, award-winning author comes an extraordinary new series about a real hero, and the real Deep South.

“With terrific, inflected characters, and a dark, subtle sense of place and history, The Ranger is an exceptional novel.” -John Sandford

“One of the best crime writers at work today.” -Michael Connelly

Ace Atkins returns with an extraordinary new series. Northeast Mississippi, hill country, rugged and notorious for outlaws since the Civil War, where killings are as commonplace as in the Old West. To Quinn Colson, it’s home-but not the home he left when he went to Afghanistan.

Now an Army Ranger, he returns to a place overrun by corruption, and finds his uncle, the county sheriff, dead-a suicide, he’s told, but others whisper murder. In the days that follow, it will be up to Colson to discover the truth, not only about his uncle, but about his family, his friends, his town, and not least about himself. And once the truth is discovered, there is no turning back.

The Review:

With The Ranger, author Ace Atkins brings an engrossing and fast paced tale of murder and corruption in a small Southern town in Mississippi.

Quinn Colson is an engaging protagonist whose career as an Army ranger has kept him away from his small hometown and dysfunctional family for the greater part of his adult life. His return for Hampton Beckett’s funeral finds him investigating the murky circumstances surrounding his beloved uncle’s death. It also brings him face to face with the family and friends he has distanced himself from over the years. As he delves deeper into his uncle’s death, he uncovers secrets better left buried and betrayal from unexpected sources.

Friend or foe, the supporting cast of characters is richly drawn and equally compelling. Quinn’s loyal high school friends Lillie Virgil, now a tough as nails deputy and Boom Kimbrough, a fellow war veteran who has fallen on tough times, have his back and aid in his investigation. Teenage mother to be Lena’s search for her baby daddy lands her in the midst of a white supremacy group that finances itself with mobile meth labs. The villains of The Ranger are accurately depicted although they might be construed as stereotypical white trash in the deep South.

Ace Atkins brings The Ranger vividly to life with a fascinating storyline, gritty dialogue and three dimensional characters. Several seemingly unrelated subplots culminate in an action packed and satisfying battle between good and evil that is somewhat reminiscent of shootouts in the Old West.

Ace Atkins leaves his readers eagerly anticipating the next installment of this explosive and exciting new series starring Quinn Colson.

This review was originally posted at The Reader’s Roundtable

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Filed under Ace Atkins, Contemporary, Mystery, Putnam Adult, Rated B, The Ranger