Friday, January 05, 2007

By Joe R. Lansdale

Joe Lansdale is one of the most inventive, outlandish, and uncompromising authors you can find today. His Hap and Leonard novels are a long running manifestation of his twisted imagination at its best. The protagonists are Hap Collins, an easy-going redneck, and his best friend Leonard Pine, a black, gay Vietnam veteran. Yup, you read that last part right. And it all happens in Texas.

Rumble Tumble begins with Hap on the outs with his girlfriend, Brett. Romantic disputes are shelved when they get a visit from Red, a midget gangster, formerly a circus performer, currently a pimp. He knows the whereabouts of Brett’s daughter, a drug-addled prostitute. She is in the clutches of the most vicious biker gang in Texas (or anywhere for that matter). To reach her they have to go to Red’s brother, once the gang’s most feared enforcer, now a born-again preacher and gopher removal expert.

If that sounds like a whacked-out tall-tale, that’s pretty much what it is, told by Joe Lansdale hisownself. Lansdale does not shy away from a good digression, if it adds spice. The tale of Red’s rescue from his life as a trick-rider of dogs is just about the funniest and most touching thing your likely to find in fiction.

The Hap and Leonard novels are a true Texas treat, do not miss them.
-Dave Hardy

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