Ballistics by D W Wilson
A Novel

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Ballistics is a lean, powerful book about quiet, emotional people. It animates a world that any smalltown North American could identify in a moment, yet it transcends this environment to evoke something universal...
-Guardian

Synopsis

It is summer and the Canadian Rockies are on fire. As the forests blaze, Alan West heads into their shadows, returning from university to his grandfather's home in the remote Kootenay Valley, wherethe man who raised him has suffered a heart attack. Confronting his own mortality, the tough and taciturn Cecil West has a dying request for his grandson: track down the father Alan has never known so that the old man can make peace with him.

And so Alan begins his search for the elusive Jack West, a man who skipped town before his son could walk and of whom his grandfather has always refused to speak. His quest will lead him to Archer, an old American soldier who decades ago went AWOL across the border into Canada. Archer has been carrying a heavy burden for many years, and through him Alan learns the stories of two broken families who came together, got too close, and then fell apart in tragic ways.

Ballistics is a remarkable first novel, about family ties and the wounds that can linger for generations when those relationships are betrayed.
 

About D W Wilson

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D. W. Wilson was born and raised in the Kootenay Valley, British Columbia, where his father was a member of the Canadian Mounted Police. He is the recipient of the University of East Anglia’s inaugural Man Booker Prize Scholarship, and his short stories have been awarded the BBC National Short Story Award and the CBC Short Story Prize. A collection, Once You Break a Knuckle, is forthcoming from Bloomsbury in 2014. Wilson lives in London.
 
Published June 25, 2013 by Bloomsbury USA. 401 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Critic reviews for Ballistics
All: 5 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 3

Kirkus

Above average
on Apr 13 2013

Too many beatings and too much philosophical brooding bog down an overextended story straining for elegiac and epic heights.

Read Full Review of Ballistics: A Novel | See more reviews from Kirkus

Publishers Weekly

Good
on Apr 15 2013

Wilson’s muscular prose and gritty voice, which recall the late crime novelist James Crumley, bring to life Alan’s fateful attempt to discover whether the old family hatreds and grudges can be overcome.

Read Full Review of Ballistics: A Novel | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Robert Nathan on Aug 02 2013

Ballistics is a lean, powerful book about quiet, emotional people. It animates a world that any smalltown North American could identify in a moment, yet it transcends this environment to evoke something universal...

Read Full Review of Ballistics: A Novel | See more reviews from Guardian

National Post arts

Below average
Reviewed by Brett Josef Grubisic on May 24 2013

...a fetishistic cataloguing of car parts, scarred knuckles and bullet casings means he often appears to lose sight of the story that matters.

Read Full Review of Ballistics: A Novel | See more reviews from National Post arts

National Post arts

Below average
Reviewed by Brett Josef Grubisic on Aug 03 2016

Wilson can certainly grab attention with his evocation of conventionally masculine literary motifs like the quest for redemption. But a fetishistic cataloguing of car parts, scarred knuckles and bullet casings means he often appears to lose sight of the story that matters.

Read Full Review of Ballistics: A Novel | See more reviews from National Post arts

Reader Rating for Ballistics
57%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 8 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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