Thomas "T" Walker is a 57-year-old businessman trying to put his life together after downloading a questionable photo from the Internet and getting busted for child pornography. Driving from Virginia to Canada, Walker, against his better judgment, picks up young couple Jenny and Lester in New York. The seductive Jenny immediately begins flirting with Walker; Walker responds; Lester provides slow-burn menace. Slowly, the couple give Walker their story: they are fleeing a Tennessee drug dealer from whom Lester has stolen (and lost) $40,000. Jenny's advances get increasingly overt; Lester's jealousy matches them. As Walker drives on toward their destination, a cabin at Wolf Point near Ontario Bay, Falco gets considerable mileage probing Walker's psyche as he contemplates past mistakes, while Jenny hints at the possibility of a serious relationship and Lester tries to extract a lump sum from the once-successful Walker for a payoff. The intriguing climax features a series of not quite smoothly foreshadowed revelations about Jenny's past and her relationship with Lester, along with a shooting that may spell the end of this uncomfortable ménage. Falco, whose selected stories were published by Unbridled in May as Sabbath Night in the Church of the Piranha, delivers a solid, small-scale thriller. (Oct. 18)
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Falco, author of the much-praised short-story collection, Sabbath Night in the Church of the Piranha (2005), offers a compelling novel about the darker side of humanity and delves pointedly into the complexities of human sexuality. Falco's sentient approach leaves the reader thoughtfully disturbed rather than pointlessly horrified by these thematic explorations. Tom "T" Walker, Jenny, and Lester are companions in this tale of vicarious adventure, with darkness and pain being the desired experience. T is the voyeur. He is seeking escape from his own suffering and does so by offering Jenny and Lester, two overtly dangerous-looking hitchhikers, a ride. With clean and precise prose, the three lives are written easily into the landscape of contemporary American problems: drug addiction, sexual abuse, and extreme family dysfunction. The climax is filled with unbearable tension, and the temptation is strong to skip ahead to see who lives. Upon reflection, the reader will experience the novel both as thriller and social commentary. Andrea Japzon
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lead to poor outcomes. A man errs and the end is almost ordained. Nothing heroic, the reader feels little for the characters and is unmoved by the rescue of survivors. Read morePublished on August 31, 2008 by John Bowes
Too much of the tale is told inside T's head. Too little happens. I found the ending a let down; everything was tied up too neatly. Read morePublished on October 14, 2007 by Richard Snyder
I knew, reading the delightfully specific, musical second sentence of Edward Falco's Wolf Point, that the book would be something special:
"On the side of the road a... Read more
I was moved and stunned by an incredibly good writer. Wow, what a discovery! I hope some of the other reviewers will recommend other authors of this calibre (Franzen, Wolfe,... Read morePublished on December 31, 2005 by Ryder