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The Ranger (Quinn Colson Novels) Hardcover – June 9, 2011
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More About the Author
One of the best crime writers working today, Ace has been nominated for every major award in crime fiction, including the Edgar twice for novels about former U.S. Army Ranger Quinn Colson. A former newspaper reporter and SEC football player, Ace also writes essays and investigative pieces for several national magazines including Outside and Garden & Gun.
He lives in Oxford, Mississippi with his family, where he's friend to many dogs and several bartenders.
Find out more about Ace and his novels on his official website: aceatkins.com, on Facebook Ace Atkins, and on Twitter @aceatkins.
Top Customer Reviews
Quinn Colson, an Army Ranger, returns to his hometown of Jericho in Tibbehah County, Mississippi. He's on leave to attend the funeral of his Uncle Hamp, who was the sheriff of Jericho. Quinn hasn't been home in almost seven years. As he reconnects with his past, the underbelly of Tibbehah County shows itself. Meth dealers, crooked politicians and wounded souls populate the county. Determined to hold on to a piece of family property, Quinn decides to stick around for a bit. Aided by his old friend Boom, back from Iraq minus an arm, and Lillie Virgil - a female deputy as tough as nails, Quinn goes head to head with the slime bent on taking whatever they want in Tibbehah County.
Atkins has put a great spin on the old fashioned western. Our heroes are those who have faced the horrors of war and have come home to find just as ugly a war on the home front. Racism, drugs and corruption are all coiled like a snake under the front porch, waiting to strike.
The dialogue is short and terse, with no unnecessary speeches to clutter up the action. It just adds to the overall tone of the book. Much is said by the words left unspoken. The characters populating the novel are all vividly drawn. The landscape and settings are just as stark and gritty. I had a clear picture in my head as I read.
Or rather, raced through the book. I literally could not put it down.The action is fast and furious. Secondary plots involving past relationships and new relatives do add a human touch to Quinn's character.
The ending is set up for the second book in the series - due out in summer of 2012.Read more ›
First things first, THE RANGER does what a debut novel is supposed to do. It introduces the main character, the next tier of recurring characters and then those needed to flesh out the book for plot purposes. Atkins seems to be able to thread that needle in his sleep.
Next, he sets the scene with descriptions which are both vivid and minimalist at the same time. Elmore Leonard Lite. There are only so many plots so, in my view, it comes down to the execution of same.
The action is detailed and unyielding. You will root for the hero and those he protects. If body count makes you squeamish then read this and sleep with a light on.
THE RANGER is an excellent, entertaining debut effort for a new series. Not a whole lot of mystery but more thrills and twists than you can shake a stick at, if that's your idea of fun.
Worth your time and money. Treat yourself.
Then the action really picks up. Supposedly his uncle who was the (drunken) Sheriff committed suicide. Quinn doesn't buy it. As he starts to investigate he reunites with various friends and enemies from his past (and it's not always clear who falls into which category) he finds a hornet's nest of political and financial rivalries, prostitution, racism, religion and downright orneriness. Atkins does a swell job of bringing these folks to life especially against the backdrop of an isolated southern town that could almost be a throwback to the 1800's. From the first conversation you can almost taste the south. My only issue with Mr. Atkins is that he never once mentions home time Oxfordian William Faulkner. This is a great first installment in what promises to be a fun series.
My first problem with The Ranger is with the ranger. Quinn is a static character....it's hard to work up any feeling for him. Quinn is supposed to be a highly trained ranger with a boat load of skills including discipline and leadership abilities. I am glad that was mentioned because I would not have known from the story itself. The first violent encounter hinted that he was lethal and fearless but after that it was just ho hum stuff.
The way around a bland hero is to surround him with some outstanding secondary characters who can challenge him to hell and back until we begin to appreciate his restraint. That duty usually falls to the villain, in this case he's a drug addled psycho who quickly becomes tedious. He's vile enough but you don't really feel the menace.
The other characters who do get page time are ambiguous at best. Good guys, bad guys who knows. Nor does it help that all of these uninteresting people are placed in a plotline that is a bit inane and worse.........annoying.
Settings can help or even make a series in many cases but there's no help here. There is little sense of time and place. Even the psycho villain expresses distain for the town telling a women in the local bank to " smile sometime. Son of a bitch, this old town is sad." Son of a bitch .....he's right.
So what kept me reading on? The hope that there would be a pay off. I bought this one.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good read if you like these detective/action novels. Similar to the Lee Child or Robert Parker books.Published 4 days ago by TERRY HURST
I really enjoyed this book can't wait to read number two.The book was easy to read and a surprise at every turn.Published 5 days ago by Amazon Customer
Atkins' writing is excellent, so good, in fact, that it put me right in the middle of a small burg in Louisiana with all the small town crap that goes on in the south. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Ron Watts
Outstanding plus! Atmospheric, authentic dialogue, vivid characters, expert writing, realistic setting, superb story line. Read morePublished 1 month ago by tennessee
Mildly interesting, really didn't connect with the main characterPublished 2 months ago by Valentina Stier
Colson is a pretty good character, and Atkins is a good writer, but I much prefer his continuation of the Robert B. Parker Spenser novels. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Kindle Customer
The book puts you into poor white trash south. Difficult decisions for the very poor. Honesty and integrity wins out. What more can we ask for in a book.Published 2 months ago by Keith Bailey
It was on again off again reading, sometimes the story would build then drop off flat, page after page slow going. I will try book 2 and see if it improves.Published 3 months ago by Ken stanley