GUILT TRIP by Ben Rehder


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In Blanco County, Texas, John Marlin, game warden, spends days with a bunch of wild and crazy animals—and not just the four-legged kind.

It’s the two-legged kind that have kept the plots boiling for four novels now (Flat Crazy, 2004, etc.), with behavior ranging from the merely ill-considered to the plainly certifiable. Texas State Senator Dylan Herzog’s behavior is a case in point. Look past his illicit affair with his delectable secretary. In this world, such behavior borders on the respectable, and it’s hardly grounds for blackmail. But it’s the randy senator’s peculiar little ways, some of them caught on film, that have made him so eminently vulnerable to enemies. Now certain fat cat land-owners have rallied to the senator in his time of trouble, fueling a sort of ongoing populist war. In the meantime, Rehder, ever the subplot juggler, has at least five of them in the air, all of which keep the estimable Marlin fully engaged. Two of them involve murder, two romance, another the complex demands of friendship—business as usual in Blanco County.

Think of it as stage farce, Texas-style—the doors keep opening and slamming as Rehder keeps sending in clowns.

Pub Date: Sept. 30th, 2005
ISBN: 0-312-32133-3
Page count: 336pp
Publisher: Minotaur
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 2005


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