Reviews for Natchez Burning
by Greg Iles
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
The murder of retired nurse Viola Turner in the small Mississippi town of Natchez sets off a firestorm of vicious attacks to prevent the unearthing of long-buried secrets. Penn Cage, a former prosecutor and now the town's mayor, becomes personally involved when his father, Dr. Tom Cage, is arrested for Viola's death. Reporter Henry Sexton has accumulated years of information about the Double Eagles, a small splinter cell of the Ku Klux Klan. A young Dr. Cage and his nurse Viola had the misfortune of crossing paths with them during the 1960s. The septuagenarian members have never stopped their illegal operations, and now their children continue their violent legacy. With fiancee Caitlin, Penn must use Henry's information to uncover the truth and save his father. VERDICT In this first of a trilogy, best-selling author Iles brings back his Southern lawyer (The Devil's Punch Bowl) in an absorbing and electrifying tale that thriller fans will be sure to devour. [See Prepub Alert, 11/10/13.]-Joy Gunn, Paseo Verde Lib., Henderson, NV (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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Much more than a thriller, Iles's deftly plotted fourth Penn Cage novel (after 2008's The Devil's Punchbowl) doesn't flag for a moment, despite its length. In 2005, the ghosts of the past come back to haunt Cage-now the mayor of Natchez, Miss.-with a vengeance. His father, Dr. Tom Cage, who has been an institution in the city for decades, faces the prospect of being arrested for murder. An African-American nurse, Viola Turner, who worked closely with Tom in the 1960s and was in the end stages of cancer, has died, and her son, Lincoln, believes that she was eased into death by a lethal injection. Tom refuses to speak about what happened (he admits only that he was treating Viola), which prevents Cage from using his leverage as mayor to head off charges. The mystery is inextricably interwoven with the violence Natchez suffered in the 1960s, including the stabbing of Viola's brother by Ku Klux Klansmen in a fight. The case may also be connected to the traumatic political assassinations of the decade. This superlative novel's main strength comes from the lead's struggle to balance family and honor. Agents: Dan Conaway and Simon Lipskar, Writers House. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.