Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Reviewing: "The Deputy" by Victor Gischler

Coyote Crossing, Oklahoma has virtually nothing going for it. A one stop light town, it barely exists these days. Just about everyone growing up in Coyote Crossing dreams of getting out. Toby Sawyer certainly did and thanks to various reasons is back with nothing much to show for his life other than his wife and son. That and a girlfriend on the side. Being broke and a part time deputy on a very small police force with an unhappy wife, a baby that needs things like diapers and food, and little prospects for the future can drive a man to girlfriends, drink, and dark thoughts. Still, he is better off than Luke Jordan whom he has known forever. Toby doesn’t know if Luke Jordan ever dreamed of leaving Coyote Crossing, Oklahoma.

In the here and now on this August night, Luke Jordan is very much dead having been shot at least nine times. Hanging half in and half out of his pickup, Luke is done and not going anywhere. Clearly, he made a wrong decision that got him killed. It won’t be the only wrong decision somebody makes this hot August night. Chief Frank Krueger instructs Toby Sawyer to stay with the body and wait for the county corner to get there while he notifies the family of the fact they only have six sons now. Toby isn’t thrilled and it doesn’t take long after the Chief leaves for Toby to make his first mistake of the night since seeing the body.

He leaves the body.

That sets off a chain of increasingly violent events in this dark and cynically funny at times novel. With a fast paced style, author Victor Gischler spins a graphic and wild tale of violence, sex and survival in a little town in the middle of nowhere.

In many ways, this 256 page read provided by Tyrus Books reminds one of an action movie. The author writes with a minimalist style of short sentences with little description which works very well for the action scenes. Character depth comes in the form of a sentence here or there and on occasion a couple of paragraphs scattered throughout the book. Since the book comes from his perspective, readers find out a lot about Toby, his love for his son, and the women in his life along with his past. We don’t learn as much about other characters in this book though what we do find out is plenty and often not good at all.

Filled with detailed graphic violence as well as several detailed sexual situations and the occasional explosion this book also provides plenty of mystery and action in the quick read. While I highly recommend this entertaining crime novel, it clearly isn’t for everyone. Nothing is left to reader imagination, so if you prefer the cozy style of novel where violence and sex are off the page and just implied, this book isn’t for you. Author Victor Gischler takes the reader by the back of the head and shoves you face first into everything in “The Deputy.”

The Deputy

Victor Gischler

Tyrus Books

April 2010


256 pages


ARC provided directly by the publisher in exchange for my objective review.

Kevin R. Tipple © 2010

No comments: