Big Red Tequila [NOOK Book]

Overview

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series
 
Everything in Texas is bigger...even murder.

Meet Tres Navarre...tequila drinker, Tai Chi master, unlicensed P.I., with a penchant for Texas-size trouble.

Jackson "Tres" Navarre and his enchilada-eating cat,...
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Big Red Tequila

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Overview

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series
 
Everything in Texas is bigger...even murder.

Meet Tres Navarre...tequila drinker, Tai Chi master, unlicensed P.I., with a penchant for Texas-size trouble.

Jackson "Tres" Navarre and his enchilada-eating cat, Robert Johnson, pull into San Antonio and find nothing waiting but trouble. Ten years ago Navarre left town and the memory of his father's murder behind him. Now he's back, looking for answers. Yet the more Tres digs, trying to put his suspicions to rest, the fresher the decade-old crime looks: Mafia connections, construction site payoffs, and slick politicians' games all conspire to ruin his homecoming.

It's obvious Tres has stirred up a hornet's nest of trouble. He gets attacked, shot at, run over by a big blue Thunderbird—and his old girlfriend, the one he wants back, turns up missing. Tres has to rescue the woman, nail his father's murderer, and get the hell out of Dodge before mob-style Texas justice catches up to him. The chances of staying alive looked better for the defenders of the Alamo....
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
It's not the plot that makes this a stand-outTres Navarre is a loner returning to his hometown to investigate and avenge an unsolved murder that he witnessed a decade before. And the supporting characters look pretty familiara crooked construction company, corrupt cops, old enemies who resent Tres poking around. What makes this a truly worthy debut is Riordan's voice. Hard to escape calling it hard-boiled Tex-Mex, but that's what it is. The dialogue is terse and the long first-person descriptions show an unbeatable flair for detail: "We pulled into a gravel lot outside the world's smallest outdoor cantina. Three green picnic tables squatted on a red concrete slab. In the back, a stack of fruit crates and an old Coca-Cola cooler passed for the bar. The whole place was ringed by a low cinder-block wall and covered by sagging corrugated tin, strung with the obligatory Christmas lights. Nobody had bothered to put up a sign for the cantina. It just naturally radiated conjunto music and the promise of cold beer." You can almost feel the summer storms rolling over south Texas. (June)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780804151931
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 1/8/2013
  • Sold by: Random House
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 39,749
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Rick Riordan
Rick Riordan is the author of six previous Tres Navarre novels—Big Red Tequila, winner of the Shamus and Anthony Awards; The Widower’s Two-Step, winner of the Edgar Award; The Last King of Texas; The Devil Went Down to Austin; Southtown; and Mission Road. He is also the author of the acclaimed thriller Cold Springs and the young adult novel The Lightning Thief. Rick Riordan lives with his family in San Antonio, Texas.

Biography

Percy Jackson and the Olympians is a terrific YA series by former middle school teacher and mystery writer Rick Riordan that revamps Greek mythology in a fun, fresh way kids find enthralling. A trouble-prone teen with attention deficit disorder and dyslexia, Percy is the half-blood son of Poseidon, one of 12 Olympian gods making mischief right here in 21st-century America. Praised by critics, librarians, and teachers, the Percy Jackson books have been honored with numerous awards and appear consistently on The New York Times bestseller list.

The series grew out of a sequence of bedtime stories Riordan invented for his son Haley -- who, at eight, had just been diagnosed with learning disabilities. Although Haley was having trouble in school, he loved the Greek myths and asked his dad to tell him some stories about the gods and heroes. Riordan ran through the standards from mythology, then began to invent new tales featuring some of the same characters and introducing a brave boy hero enough like Haley to make things interesting!

Haley begged his father to write the stories down, and in 2005, The Lightning Thief was published to excellent reviews. It was an instant hit with preteens, who loved the concept of a kid much like themselves -- i.e., embroiled in the everyday problems of school, family, and relationships -- embarking on heroic quests, soothing vengeful gods, and battling monsters.

In addition to Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Riordan also writes books for adults, most notably a series of high-octane Tex-Mex thrillers featuring private investigator Jackson "Tres" Navarre, a complicated loner with an offbeat pedigree. (Tres -- pronounced "Trace" -- is a tai chi master with a Ph.D. in medieval literature who turns to detective work when he is unable to find a teaching job!) The first novel in the series, 1997's Big Red Tequila, scooped the Anthony and Shamus Awards, two of the three most prestigious prizes for Mystery & Crime fiction. Riordan completed the trifecta when his sequel, The Widower's Two-Step, won the coveted Edgar Award in 1999.

Between the two series, Riordan remains incredibly busy. For several years, he balanced writing with teaching English to middle school students. Reluctantly, he has left teaching (a career he thoroughly enjoyed) in order to write full-time, but he still harbors hopes that someday he'll return to the classroom. Meanwhile, he makes frequent visits to schools and enjoys meeting young readers on his book tours.

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    1. Hometown:
      San Antonio, TX
    1. Date of Birth:
      June 5, 1964
    2. Place of Birth:
      San Antonio, TX
    1. Education:
      B.A. in English and History, University of Texas

Read an Excerpt

Everything with Lillian was familiar, from her linen sheets to the citrus scent of her hair when I finally fell asleep buried in it.  I was even hoping I might dream of her for a change, the way I used to.  I didn't.

The dreams started out like a slide show--newspaper photos of my dad, Express-News headlines that had burned themselves into my memory that summer.  Then it was a late spring evening in May of '85 and I was standing on the front porch of my father's house in Olmos Park.  A battered gray Pontiac, probably a '76, tinted windows and no license plate, was pulling up by the curb as my father walked from the driveway to the front door, carrying two bags of groceries.  Carl Kelley, his deputy and best friend, was a few steps behind him.  For some reason I remember exactly what Carl was holding--a twelve-pack of Budweiser in one hand and a watermelon in the other.  I was opening the front door for them, my eyes red from studying for my last round of freshman final exams at A & M.

My dad was at his very heaviest--nearly three hundred pounds of muscle and fat stuffed into oversized jeans and a checkered shirt.  Sweat lines running down his temples from the rim of his brown Stetson, he lumbered up the steps with a cigar drooping off the corner of his mouth.  He looked up and gave me one of his sly grins, started to say something, probably a wisecrack at my expense. Then a small hole blew open in the grocery bag in Dad's right arm.  A perfect white stream of milk sprouted out.  Dad looked momentarily puzzled.  The second shot came out the front of his Stetson.

Fumbling for his gun, Carl hit the ground for cover about the same time my dad hit the ground dead.  Dad was three months away from retirement.  The watermelon made a bright red starburst as it exploded on the sidewalk.  The gray Pontiac pulled away and was gone.

When I woke up alone in Lillian's bed the conjunto music from next door had stopped.  The cranberry glass night lamp was on, making the squares of moonlight pink against the hardwood floor.  Through the open bedroom door I could see Lillian standing naked in the living room, her arms hugging her body, staring at one of her photos on the wall.

She didn't seem to hear me when I called.  When I came up behind her and put my arms around her shoulders, she stiffened.  Her eyes never left the photo.

It was one of her early college pieces--a black and white photo-collage of animals, human faces, insects, buildings, all of it hand-tinted and merged into one surrealistic mass.  I remembered the December weekend when she'd been putting it together for her end-of-term project.  I'd done my best to distract her.  We'd ended up with photo scraps scattered all over the bed and clinging to our sweaters.

"Naive," she said, absently.  "Beau used to take me out into the country--we'd be shivering all night in sleeping bags on some godforsaken hilltop in Blanco for one shot of a meteor shower, or we'd trudge through twenty acres of pasture outside Uvalde so we'd be in just the right position at dawn to catch the light behind a windmill.  He used to say that every picture had to be taken at the greatest possible expense.  Then I'd look back at my old collages like this one and think how easy they'd been."

"Maybe naive gets a bad rap," I said.

We stood there together and looked at it for a minute.

"It just feels strange," she said.  "You being here."

"I know."

She leaned her head against me.  The tension in her shoulders didn't go away.

"What else is it?" I said.

She hesitated.  "There are complications."

I kissed her ear.  "You asked for me to be here.  I'm here.  There's no complication."

Until Lillian looked around at me I didn't realize her eyes were wet.

"When you left San Antonio, Tres, what were you running from?"

"I told you.  The rest of my life stuck in Texas, the idea of marriage, the careers everybody else wanted me to take--"

She shook her head.  "That's not what I meant.  Why did you go when you did, right after your father's death?"

I hugged her from behind and held on tight, trying to get lost in the citrus smell of her hair.  But when I closed my eyes against her cheek, I still saw the old newspaper photo of my father, the caption that I knew by heart. "Sheriff Jackson Navarre, gunned down brutally on Thursday evening in front of his Olmos Park home.  Deputy Sheriff Kelley and Navarre's son watched helplessly as the assassins sped away."  My father's face in the photo just smiled at me dryly, as if that caption was some private joke he was sharing.

"Maybe because when I looked around town," I told Lillian, "all I saw was him dying.  It was like a stain."

She nodded, looking back at her photo-collage.  "The stain doesn't go away, Tres.  Not even after all these years."

Her tone was bitter, not like Lillian.  I held her a little tighter.  After a while she turned around and folded herself into my arms.

"It doesn't have to be a complication for us now," I whispered.

"Maybe not," she murmured.  But I didn't need to see her face to see that she didn't believe me.

She didn't let me say anything else, though.  She kissed me once, lightly, then more.  Soon we were back in the linen sheets.  I wasn't sleeping again until almost dawn, this time with no dreams.
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Table of Contents

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 6 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 27, 2009

    An interesting, regional mystery

    I picked this book up because I live in San Antonio (and I've been reading more crime fiction/mystery lately). It was weird reading about these locations I'm familiar with in real life. Other than that the book is a straightforward PI mystery with a touch of the comic.

    The mystery was convoluted, and I wasn't able to figure out the ending (although I'm not a very sharp reader, so that might not be saying much about the story). San Antonio native (and unlicensed P.I.) Tres Navarre returns to his hometown at the request of an old girlfriend. When she disappears he's caught up in not only this mystery, but also the 10 year old mystery of who murdered his father.

    This book feels like the first of a series, introducing a bunch of characters who will probably fill the pages of the other books of Riordan's series.

    I will be checking out the rest of the series, although I haven't decided if I'm going to purchase them or check them out of the library.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 24, 2002

    Bigger and Better

    If you're a San Antonio native, it's hard to escape hearing about Rick Riordan. I've read countless reviews of his work in the Express-News, but must admit I stayed away because I was worried his books were getting press solely because they're set in SA -- not because they were good. A friend convinced me to quit being a cynic and give him a try. I must admit, I am glad I did. I started and finished Big Red Tequila last night, and it was one of the more enjoyable evenings I've spent. Riordan's writing is crisp and witty, his descriptions eloquent, his characters belieavble, and his plots just a lot of fun. I'm buying his other book now while I'm here...and I'm confident it will be just as enjoyable. Texans will love all the in-jokes, and others will get a kick out of Riordan's smooth writing, great plot structure and wonderful sense of place.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 23, 2001

    A good piece of fiction

    This is the first crime fiction novel I've read that is set in Texas. I can tell you that I really felt as though I was actually there. San Antonio is no longer strange and unfamiliar to me. An enjoyable read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 6, 2014

    I a just going to warn you......

    I love to babble on about things so with that..... . Guess what gueswhat

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2014

    Get a free ipad

    Kiss your hand three times post this three times look under your pillow

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 8, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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