A crime is committed in Louisiana during the Cajun Summer of 1963.
A crime which haunts Louisiana and America today:
the planning of the assassination of John Fitzgerald Kennedy.
Here, we meet Woody LaRivière:
a Marine veteran of the World War II,
a past nearly always haunted;
an operative in the politics of Louisiana,
a politics nearly always primal;
a buyer and seller of oil leases and wildcat wells,
a trade nearly always twisted;
a man about to lose his wife, Arianne,
a narcotics addict nearly always hopeless;
a man who is in over his head,
a head nearly always filed with anger.
Is the novel a noir detective thriller?
Is the novel a love story?
There’s a triangle: Woody (the protagonist), Arianne (his wife), and the nite life.
Is Woody a hero or anti-hero?
Both. Woody is an anti-hero; he is one apart: he always has his own agenda, that is not always understood or approved. But Woody is also a hero; he is one against: he fights for the good of his hometown.
Is Woody on a quest?
Yes, he travels throughout Cajun Louisiana’s prairies, marshes, swamps, towns and cities seeking to find out how to save his wife.
Is revenge part of the story?
Yes, Woody is campaigning in the 1963 elections against a corrupt Dixie Mafia Sheriff, with whom Woody has a personal grudge.
Is this book about power?
Yes, this is a political novel about how power is to be distributed in America around one pivotal event: the assassination of JFK and the gritty politics of Cajun Louisiana.
How does adventure play into the story?
Woody encounters a New Orleans femme fatal who pitches him into a world of visions inhabited by guardian angels and demons in the tradition of Southern Magical Realism.
Is there a chase scene?
You bet: Woody and a Houma Indian are on their way to New Orleans on Highway 90. They are pursued by a oilfield diesel truck trying to run them into Bayou Black.
What about Cajun French?
Imagine people speaking French at key moments with English subtitles.
The protagonist is Cajun. The setting is Cajun. So people speak Cajun French. Real Cajun French. Not just imaginary Cajun French written by someone who does speak the language; but by a bilingual author. There’s always a translation, but at key events you get the full flavor of the gumbo, not just an imitation.
What about the music?
That’s another story: Read about it here.
Is this an allegory?
Yes, the book is based a series of Greek myths. Interlaced are Afro-American, Cajun, and Southern folk tales.
That’s yet another story: Read about it here