Jolie Blon's Bounce by James Lee Burke
A Novel

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Synopsis

James Lee Burke, acclaimed by critics as "America's best novelist," "the Graham Greene of the bayou," and "a poet of the mystery novel," returns with his popular character, Dave Robicheaux, in a novel rich with atmosphere, ripe with menace, and filled with the kind of crackling dialogue that has made Burke a consistent New York Times best-selling author.
When a beautiful teenage girl is killed, the victim of a particularly savage rape, New Iberia, Louisiana, police detective Dave Robicheaux senses from the very start of the investigation that the most likely suspect, Tee Bobby Hulin, is not the actual killer. Though a drug addict and general ne'er-do-well, Hulin just doesn't fit the profile for this kind of brutal crime.
But when another murder occurs -- this victim a drugged-out prostitute who happens to be the daughter of one of the local mafia bigwigs -- all clues once again point to Tee Bobby Hulin, and the cries for arrest become too loud to ignore. The dead girl's father, however, prefers to take matters in his own hands and sets out to find -- and punish -- the killer himself.
But before Robicheaux can solve these crimes and bring the killer or killers to justice, he is forced to battle his own inner demons, including a painkiller addiction, a habit that begins as the result of a brutal and humiliating beating he suffers at the hands of the mysterious and diabolical character known as Legion. A fixture in the area for years, Legion was once the overseer on a local sugarcane plantation and now gets by doing odd jobs. In temperament, however, he's still the malicious and malevolent bully he always was, a man defined by evil and seemingly possessed with supernatural skills of survival.
Added to the mix, and on the good guy side of the balance sheet, is Clete Purcel, a longtime buddy of Robicheaux's and a confirmed boozer and womanizer. Clete comes to New Iberia for a visit and is quickly drawn into the struggle between the various forces of evil in the town, including Jimmy Dean Styles, a black man intent on maintaining his empire of corruption; Joe Zeroski, a trailer park mafioso with palatial aspirations -- and of course, Legion Guidry, the devil incarnate, in whom Robicheaux finds himself facing a challenge and an enemy unlike any he has ever known. And soon, what began as a duel of wits has turned into a dance of death.
Gothic, dense, brutal, touching, and always compelling, Jolie Blon's Bounce is classic storytelling from a writer who has been dubbed "the Faulkner of crime fiction."
 

About James Lee Burke

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James Lee Burke, a rare winner of two Edgar Awards, and named Grand Master by the Mystery Writers of America, is the author of thirty-one previous novels and two collections of short stories, including such New York Times bestsellers as The Glass Rainbow, Swan Peak, The Tin Roof Blowdown, Last Car to Elysian Fields, and Rain Gods. He lives in Missoula, Montana.
 
Published June 4, 2002 by Simon & Schuster. 480 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Action & Adventure, Literature & Fiction, Religion & Spirituality, Crime. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Jolie Blon's Bounce

Kirkus Reviews

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And since Tee Bobby’s attorney, true-crime writer Perry LaSalle, is the grandson of plantation owner Julian LaSalle—who very likely had time to get Tee Bobby’s grandmother pregnant before he killed himself soon after his house burned down with his ailing wife inside—ghosts from Louisiana’s past a...

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The Guardian

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Jolie Blon's Bounce by James Lee Burke 349pp, Orion, £12.99 September 11 has turned readers of crime fiction into librarians.

Aug 03 2002 | Read Full Review of Jolie Blon's Bounce: A Novel

The Guardian

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Jolie Blon's Bounce by James Lee Burke Orion £12.99, pp349 Critics are running out of superlatives to describe the writing of James Lee Burke.

Aug 18 2002 | Read Full Review of Jolie Blon's Bounce: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

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The author provides a dense, richly imagined background for his characters, especially the sinister ones: malevolent Legion Guidry, a nightmarish figure from Robicheaux's boyhood;

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Entertainment Weekly

Cajun detective Dave Robicheaux's latest mystery overflows with vibrant characters.

Jun 14 2002 | Read Full Review of Jolie Blon's Bounce: A Novel

The Best Reviews

Dave Robicheaux, the alcoholic deputy sheriff of New Iberia, Louisiana, is back with a new series of murders to solve.

Jun 18 2002 | Read Full Review of Jolie Blon's Bounce: A Novel

People

In his latest, Burke revisits swampy New Iberia, La., where his most popular character, sheriff's detective Dave Robicheaux, tangles with a small crowd of creepy suspects to solve the vicious murder of two women.

Jun 03 2002 | Read Full Review of Jolie Blon's Bounce: A Novel

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