OYSTER by John Biguenet


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Louisiana’s oyster-rich Gulf Coast area during the late 1950s provides the vivid setting for this thickly plotted tale of murder, revenge, and other steamy passions, from the former New Orleans Review editor and author of last year’s debut collection The Torturer’s Apprentice. Biguenet’s story jump-starts with a stunningly described act of violence that widens the existing gap between the long-estranged Petitjean and Bruneau families, idles for rather too long as guilty matriarch Mathilde Petitjean explains to her volatile daughter Theresa the sources of the families’ enduring enmity, then recovers energy as Theresa’s righteous indignation pushes all the burdens imposed by both past and present toward the explosive dénouement. The melodramatics may be a bit too rich for some palates, but it’s crammed with colorful characters and fascinating local detail, and ought to make un grand movie.

Pub Date: June 7th, 2002
ISBN: 0-06-019836-2
Page count: 288pp
Publisher: Ecco/HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 2002