A Quinn Colson Mystery by Ace Atkins
Review: Tibbehah County Sheriff Quinn Colson is out of a job, a new man elected into the position. Quinn is taking the loss in stride, working through the last few days of the year until January 1st, when Rusty Wise takes over. But the night of December 31st, someone runs a backhoe through the wall of Larry Cobb's house, right into the closet of the master bedroom, removing a safe and lifting it into a waiting truck, in The Redeemers, the fifth mystery in this series by Ace Atkins.
There was almost $1 million in cash in the safe, which is what the men were after. But more importantly, and unknown to them, it was the ledgers inside that are making some people in Tibbehah County nervous. Larry Cobb thinks Mickey Walls is behind the theft, but he was hundreds of miles away along the Gulf coast, giving him an alibi for the crime itself, if not exactly for being an accessory to it. Newly elected Sheriff Rusty Wise is in over his head, but he's aware enough to know it, and relies heavily on his second in command, Lillie Virgil, who resents him taking Quinn's job. Still, a crime has been committed and while they strongly suspect who did it, there's little evidence to back it up. Quinn, meanwhile, has his own problems. His father wants to add livestock and horses to his farm, and his sister Caddy, an addict, is trying to put her life back together, with Quinn's help.
The Redeemers is a well-written, if incredibly slow moving, crime novel. The first 300 or so pages is basically setup; the multiple storylines really don't start to come together until Rusty Wise is killed and Quinn wounded, at which point there are less than 80 pages left in the book. It moves quickly at this point, only to come to a quiet, somewhat uneventful conclusion. The characters, probably not surprisingly given how much time is spent setting up the various subplots, are well-developed and there is a strong sense of place in the setting of northern Mississippi. Taken as a character study, there is some appeal here, but the overall story really isn't all that compelling and seems to serve mostly as a means of bringing closure to some events that happened in the previous books. Indeed, the open-ended final paragraphs suggest that more on this will be addressed in later entries. Probably best suited for fans of the series and not for first-time readers of it.
Acknowledgment: Penguin Group provided an ARC of The Redeemers for this review.
Review Copyright © 2015 — Hidden Staircase Mystery Books — All Rights Reserved
Selected reviews of other mysteries by this author …
Putnam (Hardcover), May 2016
ISBN-13: 9780399170850; ISBN-10: 0399170855
Location(s) referenced in The Redeemers: Mississippi
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The Redeemers by Ace Atkins — A Quinn Colson Mystery
Publication Date: July 2015
List Price: $26.95
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Page Author: Lance Wright
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