The New Pantheon
If you've only seen The Wire, good on you. But you're only getting part of the story.
That aside, such is the pleasure I derive from George’s storytelling skills that the arrival of his newest novel requires me to set aside whatever I am reading and/or doing in order to delve into the bookwhich I can report is an intriguing and vivid story of family dysfunction and rebirth sans any trace of didacticism. Teenager Chris Flynn, son of Thomas (a hard-working flooring salesman who has put himself safely into middle-class life), has a short history of antisocial behavior that culminates in his incarceration at the local juvenile detention center, Pine Ridge (which with the accidental irony of prison names has no pine trees in sight). Thomas and Chris’s mother cannot figure out how their son took this turn, and as the plot unfolds we are given some entrancing snapshots of the flashpoints and family history that can form personality. If you pick up this book, I would say there is a good chance you will work your way back through the Pelecanos bibliography. You will not regret it.