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Sunshine Highway (Sunshine Series Book 3) [Kindle Edition]

Ruth Francisco
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $3.49

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Book Description

Three sheets to the wind, Sheriff Bill Crocker drives home late at night on a country road, swerving into a woman and her young daughter, who sit in a parked car. He knows the law, he knows what’s right, but in a panic—a moment of unfathomable fecklessness—takes off into the dark.

When he gets home Crocker realizes how devastating a hit-and-run will be to his career. But he cannot begin to imagine the aftershocks that will ripple through his community. People lose jobs, marriages break down, children commit crimes, homes are lost, schools are disrupted—the community is ripped asunder. He does the worst thing he could possible do—he tries to cover it up.

Enter hotshot investigative reporter, Clive Johnson, an ivy-league educated African American, who finds Southern vestiges of racism and cronyism baffling. He begins to dig around, uncovering corruption, fraud, misuse of public office, and possibly murder.

Crocker fights back, using all his old tricks. But when a human skeleton shows up in a sinkhole, Crocker’s little empire begins to unravel, revealing horrifying secrets from the past.

Evocative and poetic, rich with Southern imagery, deep with emotion and humor, Sunshine Highway is an epic saga about the struggle of the South to shake itself free from a painful past to join the twenty-first century.


Product Details

  • File Size: 520 KB
  • Print Length: 281 pages
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006O1IIKS
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #563,574 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Umm...Dark and Stormy Highway December 28, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Do you enjoy reading a good mystery with a dose of corruption, graft, blackmail, fraud and murder? Well, get comfy, turn on your Kindle and settle in for a great read by author Ruth Francisco! Sunshine Highway takes place in Walker County, Florida where Sheriff Bill Crocker, who has held the office for 32 years, has his fingers in almost everything going on in the county.

Crocker is contemplating moving up in politics by running for the State House. However, one evening after way too much booze, he is driving home and smashes into a parked car with a woman and her twelve year old daughter inside. Terrified of the possible impact upon his career, he leaves the scene.

This "hit and run" opens up a story of great depth involving a group of people whose connections go back at least 40 years. As the story of the "hit and run" develops, more stories of corruption, blackmail and even murder begin to evolve. Sheriff Crocker, who sees himself as Tony Soprano, must fight to maintain his domain as he confronts a zealous African-American reporter for the Capitol City Observer who begins to dig around and uncovers a load of "dirt."

This book is a great read! All the characters are very well developed. I even found myself feeling sorry for Sheriff Crocker at one point when he was spending time with his estranged daughter. The author did some great research on Southern "local color" as well. Not everyone knows the term "mullygrubs!"

This is a very well edited book with an awesome, thought provoking story about small town Southern life moving from the past to the future. I highly recommend this one!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read January 24, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Sunset Highway is an excellent read. If I were a professional reviewer, I would put in 'a cracking good story' or 'a pageturner, I couldn't put it down!' at this point for citation, which is really true! I had a bit of a crisis when I discovered, at the start of my relatively long public-transit commute, that the smartphone had run out of juice...

The author knows her country and the people; dialog and detail ring true. And the author really has a cracking good story to tell. No offense to the best-selling author, but Sunset Highway is Carl Hiaassen with depth. Nothing is as simple as it seems, neither the layered story line, nor the figures who act in it. And perhaps the most enjoyable thing is the author's gentle, thoughtful voice - not out to rub our noses in this or that point, but capable of a range of feelings, from a light, sardonic amusement to Florida lyricism to what one feels is a genuine affection for the actors, with all their foibles.

So, a truly excellent read which I highly recommend!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars To know it is to love it. June 13, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The book was great if you knew where it was written. It is always fun to read about something you know. Imagining that I was reading it as someone who just wanted to be entertained I am not sure it would have met muster. Little development of characters, a lot of time spent in the car driving down highways that were always described similarly -- once would have been enough, and very little real insight as to how and why small southern towns evolved as power hubs for a few.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant, captivating read! January 1, 2012
By N. Kent
Format:Kindle Edition
A very well thought out storyline and the description lacks for nothing.
The prologue is quick to get the reader's attention at a very early stage.
The scene of rusted trucks set in a semi circle; portray an eerie scene with vivid detail.
The book is full of twists and turns from page one...an excellent read.

Neville Kent (Author)
The Secrets of the Forest - The Time Zone.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hooked From The First Page February 11, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Somebody on one of the Kindle forums recommended Sunshine Highway, so I downloaded the sample. I was hooked from the first page, and after I read the sample I purchased the book. What an excellent story by a gifted storyteller!

Sheriff Bill Crocker is a benevolent dictator in his domain, a stretch of backwater along the Florida Panhandle. If he likes you, the sheriff will talk to the bank to get them to back off on foreclosing your home loan, or get you a job with the county, or look the other way when your kids are caught with drugs. But if you cross him, or if it suits his needs, Crocker will get you fired, use the power of his office to intimidate you, and maybe even make you disappear. He's a schemer, a bully, a womanizer, a drunk, and he's gotten rich during his time in office.

But Sheriff Crocker's world begins to collapse around him when he is involved in a hit and run accident while driving drunk. He believes he is invincible and reacts in all the wrong ways, and by the time the story over there will be betrayal, revenge for old wounds, and murder as the thin veneer of civility is ripped off of Walker County.

Having traveled the back roads through this part of Florida, I felt like I was seeing it all again through author Ruth Francisco's eyes. My only problem with Sunshine Highway is that I didn't want it to end! Some might not appreciate the bad language in this book, but in the real world, bad people (and even a lot of good people) talk that way. There is a lot of reality in Sunshine Highway, and I'll be looking for more by Ms. Francisco.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read
I read voluminously and am embarrassed to admit that I seldom review.

I have just read my third Ruth Francisco book and my shame has caught me. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Michael J. Regan
4.0 out of 5 stars Good read from North Florida
Must read for residences of Wakulla County, Florida. Although fiction it is not hard to guess who the real characters are and the book was well researched and written. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Disappointed buyer
4.0 out of 5 stars Story is close to home
This book is based on events that happened in my area. The old cars are rusting just down the road from where I live and I could recognize a lot of the characters and events in... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars The Lost Coast Comes Alive.
A resident of "Capital City" and lover of the sticks and swamps and sinks and rivers that nourish our souls, our very lives, and add to the unique beauty of the region and... Read more
Published 18 months ago by James E. Knauff III
5.0 out of 5 stars Hard to put down
Kept my interest. I am from the county where this took place so I new some of the characters .
Published 19 months ago by Bryan Camp
3.0 out of 5 stars Wow..sounds like Wakulla county, Imagine that!
,it would be quite boring if you didn't know where the story took place , but I have no doubt where this story took place.
Published 20 months ago by Gloria
4.0 out of 5 stars Another good one by Ruth Francisco!
Enjoyed this novel....when the sheriff thinks he is above the law, his web of lies becomes his downfall...worth it and even more!
Published 22 months ago by Jane Austen
4.0 out of 5 stars Crooked Sheriff
Loved reading this book since I live in the area where this all took place. Great to finally know the history of the rusted trucks I have driven by for years. Read more
Published on September 6, 2012 by Julia H Herndon
4.0 out of 5 stars Just when you think you've figured it out...
Sheriff Bill Crocker, school teacher Summer Dayes and newspaper reporter, Clive Parker--3 people whose lives are inexplicably intertwined in a tale of greed, lust, betrayal and the... Read more
Published on March 6, 2012 by Debra L. Martin
5.0 out of 5 stars As a resident of Walker (oops Wakulla) County...
If you like a good mystery with twists and turns written so that you can't figure out the ending in advance, then this book is for you. Read more
Published on February 16, 2012 by Satram
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More About the Author

I tend to write novels that are a little controversial. I don't intend to, but a question grabs hold of my mind--Do we have a right to say no to medical technology? What would it be like to be Jackie Kennedy? Where is Islamic extremism taking us?--and it won't let go. I have to explore it, I have to write about it.

Since my interests are varied, my books are varied, perhaps too much so. But whatever the theme, I always explore identity, trying to reconcile the physical and spiritual worlds. My characters respond sensually to the world as I do, they question and doubt. It would be easier to be a different kind of writer maybe. I hope you get something out of my little efforts.

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