"Twilight of the Drifter" is a crime story with southern gothic overtones. It centers on thirty-something Josh Devlin, a failed journalist who, after a year of wandering, winds up in a Kentucky homeless shelter on a wintry December. Soon after the opening setup, the crosscurrents go into motion as Josh comes upon a runaway named Alice holed up in an abandoned boxcar. Taken with her plight and dejected over his own squandered life, he spirits her back to Memphis and his uncle's Blues Hall Cafe. From there he tries to get back on his feet while seeking a solution to Alice's troubles. As the story unfolds, a Delta bluesman's checkered past comes into play and, inevitably, Josh finds himself on a collision course with a backwoods tracker fixated on the Civil War and, by extension, the machinations of the governor-elect of Mississippi. In a sense, this tale hinges on the vagaries of chance and human nature. At the same time, an underlying force appears to be driving the action as though seeking the truth and long-awaited redemption. Or, to put it another way, past sins have finally come due in the present...
|Publisher:||Sunbury Press, Inc.|
|Product dimensions:||5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.57(d)|
About the Author
Shelly Frome is a professor of dramatic arts emeritus at the University of Connecticut, a former professional actor, a writer of mysteries, books on theater and film, and articles on the performing arts appearing in a number of periodicals in the U.S. and the U.K.. His fiction includes "Tinseltown Riff", "Lilac Moon" and "Sun Dance for Andy Horn". Among his works of non-fiction are the acclaimed "The Actors Studio" and texts on the art and craft of screenwriting and writing for the stage. "The Twinning Murders" is a trans-Atlantic cozy in the classic British tradition. He lives in Litchfield, Connecticut.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Twilight of the Drifter based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Josh Devlin has left his confining, mapped-out future for the lure of the road. So far, it’s not really working out that well. First he lands in a homeless shelter in the middle of an icy December, and then he runs into Alice, a teenage runaway hiding in a nearby boxcar. Alice has amnesia and, it turns out, a truckload of troubles following her. Focusing his missing sense of purpose on helping her (even if it’s against her will), Josh is determined to help her regain her memory and get to the bottom of the mystery that threatens her. Twilight of the Drifter is rich with Southern-backwoods atmosphere, which does lend an intriguing sort of Gothic romance to the story. Unfortunately the writing is also very disjointed and stream-of-consciousness, which makes the plot hard to follow- not an advantage in a mystery novel! I can understand why the author choose this style, as the main character is clearly looking for an On The Road experience, but it would be better suited to literary fiction than to a genre novel. Despite a promising, suspenseful beginning, I was unable to get into this book at all. I never really got to know the characters or their backstories, and their dialogue was so jargon-filled that much of the time I couldn’t even understand what they were saying. To be completely honest, after I was finished with the book I couldn’t have told you for certain what happened in it. If you’re really interested in Southern culture and history, this might be worth a read for the atmosphere alone, but in my opinion it’s too confusing to be a satisfying mystery.
Reviewed by Joy H. for Readers Favorite Failed journalist Josh Devlin ended up in a homeless shelter in Kentucky after wandering around for a year doing nothing. One day Josh runs into Alice, a runaway living in an old abandoned boxcar. He could see she needed food, so he brought her food from the homeless shelter, and brought her extra blankets as well. Later he decides to take her to his uncle's Café to try and see what he could do for her. They end up meeting more homeless trying to find their way through life. As the story goes on, Josh finds himself in a whirlwind of situations he never expected. This story follows Josh and Alice long with a group of people with pretty much the same thing in common -- they have all at some point failed in life, leaving them all trying to force their way through life any way they can. Their journey of crime and horrific difficulties is anything but an easy one. Will these desperate folks be finally able to find redemption from their past life? This is an interesting read following the rather difficult group of misfits. The author creates a cast of colorful southern based characters who will stay with you for a while. Shelly Frome is a great storyteller and weaves an action-packed story that will keep you turning the pages until the end. I had to keep reading to find out if these somewhat corrupt characters found the rightful place in life that they were looking for. If you like crime stories, this would be a great read for you; so grab a copy and enjoy for yourself!
I expected more from a "seasoned" writer yet this reads like a work from a new writer.