Jolie Blon's Bounce Mass Market Paperback – Oct 1 2003
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Dave Robicheaux, the Louisiana cop who's easily one of the most complex and compelling protagonists in mystery fiction, confronts his own demons as well as a brutal adversary who might be the devil himself in this dark thriller. This is classic James Lee Burke, the master stylist, writing at the top of his game:
"I wanted to drive deep into the Atchafalaya Swamp, past the confines of reason, into the past... on the tree-flooded alluvial rim of the world, where the tides and the course of the sun were the only measures of time (and) all you had to do was release yourself from the prison of restraint, just snip loose the stitches that sewed your skin to the hairshirt of normalcy."The plot hinges on a pair of murders that don't seem to be connected--a mobbed-up prostitute and a pretty young teenage girl--and the Cajun blues singer accused of both crimes. Robicheaux believes that Tee Bobby Hulin, the gifted musician whose original composition provides the title for this brilliantly realized Gothic crime novel, is innocent. Proving it puts him in the sights of a vicious old overseer named Legion, whose almost supernatural powers nearly drown Robicheaux in the swamp of his own addictions. The narrative proceeds slowly, but Burke's dedicated fans won't begrudge him one beautifully turned phrase, gloriously limned description, or insightful characterization: they just don't get any better than this one. --Jane Adams --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
To read a Burke novel is to enter a timeless, parallel universe of violent emotions and lush, brooding landscapes, where class and racial distinctions and family histories mold society. This is the stunningly talented Burke's 21st book and his best until the next one. Dave Robicheaux, the psychologically scarred detective for the New Iberia, La., sheriff's department, investigates two brutal murders, one of a nave teenage girl, the other of a feckless drug-addled prostitute. 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; a power-hungry tavern owner; an arrogant lawyer; a combative female PI; the prostitute's Mafioso father; and Marvin Oates, an enigmatic Bible salesman who floats ominously through the narrative. Robicheaux doesn't believe the obvious suspect Tee Bobby Hulin, a drug-addicted musical genius is the murderer. Aided and disrupted by his obstreperous pal, Clete Purcel, Robicheaux runs into the usual trouble. Legion gives Robicheaux such a ferocious beating that he reverts to drinking and addictive painkillers. Though the search for the murderer moves the story, the novel is really an examination of the savage relationships of the characters and the palpable presence of the past. Burke offers a vivid social history of an inbred, corrupt place. As Clete so aptly tells his friend, "This is Louisiana, Dave. Guatemala North. Quit pretending it's the United States."
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Jolie Blon's Bounce centers around Robicheaux trying to connect two seemingly unconnected murders, one a teenager from a farming family, the other a strung-out prostitute. Around this plot swirl a typical rogues gallery of characters that enter Robicheaux's sphere: Tee Bobby Hulin, a blues guitarist and singer who pens the song that becomes the book's title. Jimmy Dean Styles, an ex-boxer and current bar owner and music producer, Marvin Oates, a seemingly innocent bible salesman, Sal Angelo, a Viet Nam vet who may have been with Dave's unit, and one of the nastiest characters Burke has brought to life, the former plantation overseer known simply as "Legion." There is also a duo of lawyers, Perry LaSalle, whose grandfather owned a pepper plantation, and Barbara Shanahan, a beautiful but angry woman who gets involved with Dave's pal Clete Purcel. Throw in some drug dealers, crooked cops, New Orleans mafia and a woman with secrets and you have a dark tale that will have you turning page after page.
Burke's strengths continue in this book: Beautiful prose depicting the Louisiana landscape or gritty descriptions of those who inhabit this otherworldly place. The dialogue smacks you in the face. The characters show multiple dimensions and always have a surprise in store for Dave or the reader. The story works on multiple levels, with the murder mystery nearly secondary to the inner story as Dave uncovers the connection between Legion, LaSalle and Tee Bobby Hulin, and other connections.
My knocks would be that old Streak is getting very close to the edge of not being likable.Read more ›
And I knew what I had to do."
While I like James Lee Burke and admire his writing ability tremendously, his books usually bother me. His writings will never be confused with happy ever after endings and are full of characters that for the most part, are full of various stages of moral decay. He has an ability to gaze at the world and write about things that haunt us all. In his world, evil is a spectral presence and truly does lurk in the heart of most people. His latest book is even more in that vein with a strongly implied supernatural component to it.
Dave Robicheaux, a Police Detective in New Iberia, Louisiana has seen quite a lot of evil in the world. From the jungles of Vietnam, to the back alleys of New Orleans and now home in New Iberia, he has seen man and woman brutalize and kill total strangers as well as those they profess to love. One late spring day, he is called out to the scene of a brutal rape and murder. The initial suspect is Tee Bobby Hulin, a heavy drug user as well as an accomplished blues singer. While the evidence, what little there is, does point to him, Robicheaux does not believe he did it.
Robicheaux begins to investigate and begins to unravel a horrifying mess of interwoven racial ancestry by rape, murder, and greed.Read more ›
The other evil demon is Robicheaux's continuing struggle to beat alcholism. Robicheaux flirts briefly with addiction to ampehtamines in his own battle with the bottle.
James Lee Burke does a great job of sharing the thoughts of the police detective with us. As always in his books, his descriptions of the Lousiana bayous are fabulous. You can really feel the humidity and hear the haunting sounds of the bayou.
I think this book would make a great movie. It has it all--great setting, great plot, and memorable characters. A real five-star read.
Most recent customer reviews
I actually got a big kick out of that fact that the book still had library markings on the inside.. Glad to know that good books do travel !Published 4 months ago by nec442
This is one of the best books I have ever read! It's a very well written mystery novel that intertwines characters and their stories. I just couldn't put it down. Read morePublished on June 12 2004 by Melissa Noe
I might have found James Lee Burke's writing interesting, his descriptions detailed, his characters well-rounded, etc. Read morePublished on April 30 2004
I found this book from Burke to be surprisingly contrived and ended up getting boringPublished on Feb. 19 2004 by Ginger
...a sink-your-teeth-into-it mystery, a big tough thriller of a book that you can snuggle up with after pulling on a pair of soft cotton pants and a soft cotton T-shirt, sitting in... Read morePublished on Feb. 14 2004 by Temple Swann
i wrote previously-that i was about to read the book-and knew it would be great-well i've read it and burke has refined clete and dave to a fare thee well--their dialogue is... Read morePublished on Dec 20 2003 by vince martin
"Jolie Blon's Bounce" is so much more than a murder mystery. In this story, Lousiana police detective Dave Robicheaux is searching for clues to solve the murders of two... Read morePublished on July 24 2003 by L. Kelly
Talk about mixed emotions. Burke's one of the best stylists in
American fiction at any level. His descriptions of New Orleans and Louisiana are lush and dead-on. Read more