Winner and nominee of multiple awards, including the 2018 Edgar award for Best Novel, the 2018 Anthony award for Best Novel, and the 2017 Los Angeles Times book prize for mystery/thriller, Bluebird, Bluebird by American author Attica Locke is a mystery novel dripping with southern, blues atmosphere, one that digs deep, and often suspensefully, into interpersonal relationships and family sagas. It is the author's heartfelt love letter to the land of her grandparents, and an unapologetic portrait of race relations in rural, East Texas.
Sit for a spell at Geneva Sweet's Sweets, a one room cafe in the little town of Lark, where black-eyed peas and oxtails, and fried fruit pies for dessert are on the menu, John Lee Hooker's "Bluebird" is playing on the jukebox, and a little bell jingles when a customer opens the screen door, after greeting neighbor Wendy, who sells her preserves and her Texas curiosities on the front porch.
Just a few short minutes down the farm road , and a million miles away, is Jeff's Juice House, known to Geneva's customers as The Icehouse. When a 35 year old attorney from Chicago "takes a ride up Highway 59", he never guesses just how different daily life can be for a person of color in an East Texas backwater like Shelby County, even in 2016. When his bloated body is discovered in the Bayou, the local sheriff seems to be slow-walking the investigation. But then the body of a young, white female is found in the brackish water behind Geneva's cafe, more recently deceased than the black man, it would seem. What are the chances that these two deaths were accidental? If not accidental, were they racially motivated, with one being a retribution killing for the other? Were the two victims connected in some way? Black Texas Ranger Darren Mathews receives a tip-off about two recent, unexplained deaths in one tiny town, prompting him to return to his East Texas roots to investigate. Ranger Mathews is a wonderful, complex character who aspires to be honorable, and to follow facts, and evidence wherever it leads.
Readers should be aware that the novel does contain some provocative, racial epithets, but reading truths in literature, however painful, can often increase the reader's empathy and understanding. Bluebird, Bluebird is an honest, powerful, slice-of-life-in-a-rural-East-Texas-town story. It is also a satisfying mystery, infused with literary symbolism, that will have many readers reflecting upon their own possible assumptions about "the other", and there will never be a wrong time for that.
Best for Crime Fiction Readers:
Who enjoy reading more literary mystery and crime fiction.
Who are interested in reading about race relations and civil rights, especially in the south.
Who appreciate crime fiction and mysteries that emphasize character development, as well as interpersonal and family relationships.
Who are interested in East Texas lore and culture.
Who are interested in the musical style known as "the blues".
Pages: 307 (Hardcover)
Hours: 9 Hrs. 24 Mins. (Audio Book)
A powerful thriller about the explosive intersection of love, race, and justice from a writer and producer of the Emmy winning Fox TV show Empire.
East Texas: it's an unforgiving landscape where justice for all can be hard to come by-a fact that Darren Mathews, an African-American Texas Ranger knows all too well. Darren made it out alive, but returned to the only place he'll ever call home to fight those who forced him to flee. When the struggle lands him in hot water, Darren takes a trip along Highway 59 to Lark, where two murders-an African-American lawyer from Chicago and a local white woman-have stirred up a hornet's nest of resentment. Darren must solve the crimes before Lark's long simmering racial fault lines erupt. A rural noir suffused with the music of Texas, BLUEBIRD, BLUEBIRD, is an exhilarating, timely novel about the collision of race and justice in America.
MINM Overall Rating: 5/5 Stars
(Please note: any advertisement included in the musical link to John Lee Hooker's song "Bluebird" does not necessarily reflect the views of Mystery in Minutes.)
- Jul 2, 2019 Book Review: LOCK EVERY DOOR by Riley Sager Jul 2, 2019
- Jun 11, 2019 Book Review: THE INVITED by Jennifer McMahon Jun 11, 2019
- May 20, 2019 Book Review: MIRACLE CREEK by Angie Kim May 20, 2019
- April 2019
- Mar 21, 2019 Book Review: AFTER SHE'S GONE by Camilla Grebe Mar 21, 2019
- Feb 28, 2019 Book Review: THE SILENT PATIENT by Alex Michaelides Feb 28, 2019
- Feb 19, 2019 Book Review: THE LOST MAN by Jane Harper Feb 19, 2019
- Feb 1, 2019 Book Review: THE HIDING PLACE by C.J. Tudor Feb 1, 2019
- Jan 24, 2019 Book Review: NEVER TELL by Lisa Gardner Jan 24, 2019
- Jan 8, 2019 Book Review: An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen Jan 8, 2019
- Jan 8, 2019 Happy 2019! Jan 8, 2019
- December 2018
- November 2018
- Oct 27, 2018 MINM Book Review: The Craftsman by Sharon Bolton Oct 27, 2018
- Oct 17, 2018 MINM Book Review: The Wife by Alafair Burke Oct 17, 2018
- Oct 15, 2018 A Quick Note To Authors, Publishers, And To My Readers: Oct 15, 2018
- Sep 30, 2018 MINM Book Review: Button Man by Andrew Gross Sep 30, 2018
- Aug 31, 2018 YOU by Caroline Kepnes Book Review and Video Trailer of the Series Adaptation Aug 31, 2018
- Aug 21, 2018 Book Review: The Other Woman by Sandie Jones Aug 21, 2018
- Aug 10, 2018 MINM Book Review: Something in the Water by Catherine Steadman Aug 10, 2018
- Aug 1, 2018 MINM Review: A Noise Downstairs by Linwood Barclay Aug 1, 2018
- Jul 22, 2018 MINM Book Review: NEED TO KNOW by Karen Cleveland Jul 22, 2018
- Jul 10, 2018 MINM Review: A Gathering of Secrets by Linda Castillo Jul 10, 2018
- Jul 2, 2018 Book Review: THE LAST TIME I LIED by Riley Sager Jul 2, 2018
- June 2018
- May 2018
- April 2018
- March 2018
- Feb 23, 2018 MINM Review: The Woman in the Window by A. J. Finn Feb 23, 2018
- Feb 12, 2018 MINM Review: The Legacy by Yrsa Sigurdardottir Feb 12, 2018
- Jan 31, 2018 MINM Review: LOOK FOR ME by Lisa Gardner Jan 31, 2018
- Jan 21, 2018 MINM Review: Into the Black Nowhere by Meg Gardiner Jan 21, 2018
- Jan 7, 2018 MINM Review: The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor Jan 7, 2018
- Dec 17, 2017 MINM: Wishes our readers Happy Holidays with an excerpt from Magpie Murders Dec 17, 2017
- Dec 16, 2017 MINM Review: Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz Dec 16, 2017
- Dec 5, 2017 MINM Review: The Vanishing Season by Joanna Schaffhausen Dec 5, 2017
- Nov 28, 2017 MINM Review: You Can Run by Steve Mosby Nov 28, 2017
- Nov 21, 2017 MINM: is Thankful Nov 21, 2017
- Nov 15, 2017 MINM Review: NIGHTBLIND by Ragnar Jonasson Nov 15, 2017
- Nov 8, 2017 MINM Review: Down a Dark Road by Linda Castillo Nov 8, 2017
- Nov 2, 2017 MINM Review: Hide and Seek by M.J. Arlidge Nov 2, 2017
- October 2017
- Sep 26, 2017 MINM Review: Depth of Lies by E.C. Diskin Sep 26, 2017
- Sep 24, 2017 MINM Review: Glass Houses by Louise Penny Sep 24, 2017
- Sep 24, 2017 MINM Review: Unsub by Meg Gardiner Sep 24, 2017
- Sep 24, 2017 MINM Review: Exquisite by Sarah Stovell Sep 24, 2017
- Sep 24, 2017 MINM Review: The Lying Game by Ruth Ware Sep 24, 2017
- Sep 24, 2017 MINM Review: The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins Sep 24, 2017