Saturday, May 19, 2007


Ross Thomas won an Edgar award for this one (named after Edgar Allen Poe, and awarded to mysteries), copyrighted in 1984, so I had high hopes.

The title, derived from the Uncle Remus stories, refers to one's home turf, in which one can expect to be safe. This is not immediately apparent, as the story begins with the murder of a young police detective, and continues with her brother, Benjamin Dill, trying to unravel who did it and why. As he draws nearer to the answer, he finds that it all hinges on who is in whose briarpatch.

Good things: excellent writing, interesting story, compelling characterizations.

Bad things: language and gratuitous sex--not constant, but enough for an "R" rating. Indeterminate ending, which may be more realistic, but is less satisfying.

In the end, I really enjoyed it, but I won't be seeking out his work in the future.


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