"The dialogue scenes, along with the action sequences, the South Texas landscape and the indelibly conflicted characters make you want to give Burke a medal."--"Kirkus Reviews"
"James Lee Burke is, quite simply, a genius, an exemplar of all that is great in American writing, and "Feast Day of Fools" is moving, and humane, and poetically, terrifyingly brilliant. As Burke gets older, he just gets better: in doing so, he gives hope to the generation of writers influenced by him, while simultaneously reminding us of how far we still have to go to be that good."--John Connolly, "New York Times "bestselling author of "The Burning Soul"
"[O]utstanding. . . . The richness of Burke's characters, always one of his strengths, reaches new heights . . . . The intricately plotted narrative takes numerous unexpected turns, and Burke handles his trademark themes of social justice and corruption with his usual subtlety."--"Publishers Weekly" (starred review)
An Indie Next Pick for October 2011
"["Feast Day of Fools"] further cements Burke's status as one of America's greatest contemporary novelists. . . . Burke weaves a tapestry of unique characters whose widely differing motivations enrich his tale. . . . This rich novel will satisfy Burke's fans and should draw new ones who have not yet had the privilege of reading his works."--"Library Journal"
"Nobody turns suspense into poetry like James Lee Burke."--"San Antonio Express-News"
"Nobody writes quite like James Lee Burke. He gets better with each successive book. . . . Hold on tight, this is a wild ride."--"Dayton Daily News"
"You know what is rare? A veteran and prodigious writer who never lets you down. Who, with each book, and I'm talking about a lot of books, makes you feel like you have discovered something new, learned some hidden truth about human behavior and society. James Lee Burke is one of those rarities. Book to book he keeps it going, never disappointing. Last year's masterpiece is just prelude to this year's new masterpiece. . . . This year, we have "Feast Day of Fools" and my survey of Burke books in between concludes that he remains the heavy weight champ, a great American novelist whose work, taken individually or as a whole, is unsurpassed."--Michael Connelly, "New York Times" bestselling author of "The Lincoln Lawyer"
"Holy shit does this novel crush into its pages a whole war chest of bloody drama and brutal questions about what it means to be an American and a Christian and a Christian American in the new century. . . . James Lee Burke--muscular and elegiac, brutal and compassionate--is a Stetson-wearing, spur-jangling giant among novelists."--Benjamin Percy for "Esquire"
"Like the hero of his 30th work, to be published Tuesday, James Lee Burke delivers--again. There's a reason Burke, 75, has earned the Grand Master title from the Mystery Writers of America and is tagged by some colleagues as the greatest living mystery writer. . . . He combines complex characterization, driving action and a philosophical bent--and his consistency is remarkable, carrying him through 18 Dave Robicheaux books, set in Louisiana, and now the third novel in the Hack Holland series. The man is legendary, and rightly so. . . . But "Feast Day of Fools" is more than action. It's a sprawling, compelling, allegorical story with characters that just won't get out of my mind. Through it all, Burke shares some of his hard-won knowledge about life. And that makes it one of the Grand Master's best."--"New Orleans Times-Picayune"
"When the literary lights of the 21st century go marching in, James Lee Burke will be leading the parade. For five decades, Burke has created memorable novels that weave exquisite language, unforgettable characters, and social commentary into written tapestries that mirror the contemporary scene. His work transcends genre classification. . . . "Feast Day of Fools" is a richly complex novel with several themes and subplots. . . . extraordinary characterizations, dialogue, sense of place, and an almost mystical, allegorical summation."--"Philadelphia Inquirer"
"Burke's evocative prose remains a thing of reliably fierce wonder."--"Entertainment Weekly"
"James Lee Burke's thirty superbly written mysteries and Westerns have always been allegorical, illuminating the grandest of themes. Over the years, he has written about racism, neocolonialism, the rape of the environment, the hijacking of Christianity by hateful bigots and the futility of war. He has written about manipulative political and business figures, and about the quest for individual and national redemption. He has also explored the nature of evil. . . . In "Feast Day of Fools", Burke pulls all of his themes together in a master work that comprises his unified theory of America at the beginning of the 21st century. . . . And as always in a Burke novel, the landscape is vividly described in passages so poetic they could be broken into lines of verse."--Bruce DeSilva, "The Associated Press"
An Indie Next List Pick for October 2011
"Reading "Feast Day of Fools" is an experience in yin and yang. It's a beautiful poem shot full of lead. It's like a picture postcard slashed with a bloody knife. It's heartbreakingly gorgeous and sandpaper-harsh, both at the same time. . . . [If] you're up for a wild ride through the sagebrush, then, "Feast Day of Fools" is a book to own."--"Flint Journal"
"At 75, Burke is writing each book as if it could be his final one. . . . ["Feast Day of Fools"] is soaked with a sense of mortality. . . . It's easy to hear echoes of Hemingway and Cormac McCarthy, but Burke is his own writer. He carries off a rich underlayer of Christian imagery without falling into predictable symbolism. Burke is a master of meaty dialogue, darkly funny passages in which characters reveal themselves while talking at cross-purposes. And this woebegone place, beset by thunderstorms that don't penetrate the hard soil, is just as vivid, though very different, from the swampy Louisiana of his Robicheaux novels. . . . Burke uses the simple framework of a series mystery to explore a world at the border of the realistic and the mythic."--"The Columbus Dispatch"
"Riveting . . . Burke is creating an allegorical, almost Biblical setting here: The lost wander hopelessly in the desert, seeking revenge or redemption or some terrible mix of both. The moral center in all of this is Hackberry Holland, who feels old 'in the way people feel old when they have more knowledge of the world than they need.' He's Burke's most fascinating character, a man whose sense of justice has been shaken but not destroyed. Equally compelling is Pam Tibbs, the most no-nonsense woman in fictional law enforcement ('Men often thought she was trying to be cute. They were mistaken'). The push-and-pull between the two is just one more of Burke's thrilling examples of the mysteries of the human heart."--"The Miami Herald"
"James Lee Burke presses onward with his singular mission to rewrite the American western in "Feast Day of Fools" . . . Burke is constructing a whole mew mythology in this series, with characters haunted by history and driven by ghosts. . . . Hackberry Holland's assertion that 'a martial and savage spirit had ruled these hills' since the time of the conquistadors is a good man's way of saying that the violence we do sinks into the ground we walk on and becomes part of our collective heritage."--"The New York Times Book Review"
"He's a genius, Burke, and I read everything he puts out. All his novels are about good vs. evil and how hard it is to overcome evil. This one's about a Texas sheriff and two villains, one associated with the [drug] cartels, the other a mass murderer. The three of them collide.""--"Bill O'Reilly for the" New York Post"""