Growing up in the rural Southern hamlet of Natchez, Mississippi, Penn Cage learned everything he knows about honor and duty from his father, Tom Cage. But now the beloved family doctor is accused of murdering Viola Turner, the beautiful nurse with whom he worked in the early 1960s. A fighter who has always stood for justice, Penn is determined to save his father.
The quest for answers sends Penn deep into the past—into the heart of a conspiracy of greed and murder involving the Double Eagles, a vicious KKK crew headed by one of the wealthiest and most powerful men in the state. Now Penn must follow a bloody trail that stretches back forty years, to one undeniable fact: no one—black or white, young or old, brave or not—is ever truly safe.
An exploration into the fragile, unbreakable relationship of father and son as well as our perception vs the actuality of how well we know our parents when harbored secrets and history threaten to reveal more than we ever imagined.
I enjoyed Penn, he’s attempting to figure out who his father is with great trepidation. Hesitantly Penn plunges in and starts and stalls as startling information about his father comes to light, mustering strength Penn digs deeper and deeper. You can understand Penn’s concern, his surprise, simultaneously struggling with disappointment and hope as he is seeing his father differently than his original perception lead him to believe.
Although I am a Penn fan there are so many others equally as captivating. Henry Sexton, Albert Norris and Caitlin Masters. Royal, Knox, Thornton evil doers you can’t wait to see pay for their heinous misdeeds.
As much as I found myself absorbed in the story, I had to pause on several occasions. The brutality was disturbing, a sad stain in history for our country, you find yourself reflecting on the past and present questioning how much has changed and how far we still have to go. The violence inflicted was downright depressing forcing me to close the book until my emotions were in check before I could continue. Iles is one masterful storyteller, obvious from the effect he produced upon me. Powerful scenes, disgusting people, innocents suffered.
Iles creates an amazing mystery with loads of historical references, the setting pulls you into the south and its environs and culture. You will not be bored, rather you will find yourself enthralled with the characters and all that’s unearthed. The ending is perfect, you’ll want to continue with the trilogy to see where Iles takes us as well as his memorable characters in the incredible journey. I rarely read series, this is clearly an exception as I anxiously await the next installment.
Enter to win 1 of 2 paperback copies of Natchez Burning by Greg Iles, please complete the giveaway form below. US residents only. Ends 10/19/15
Hardcover, 791 pages
Published April 29th 2014 by William Morrow (first published 2014)