Ace Atkins is the New York Times bestselling author of the Quinn Colson novels, the first two of which--The Ranger and The Lost Ones--were nominated for the Edgar Award for Best Novel (he also has a third Edgar nomination for his short story, "Last Fair Deal Gone Down"). In addition, he is the author of several New York Times bestselling novels in the continuation of Robert B. Parker's Spenser series. Before turning to fiction, he was a correspondent for the St. Petersburg Times, a crime reporter for the Tampa Tribune, and, in college, played defensive end for the undefeated Auburn University football team (for which he was featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated). He lives in Oxford, Mississippi.
In 1933, smalltime bank robber George "machine gun" Kelly, at the instigation of his wife, kidnapped Oklahoma oil man Charles Urschel and held him for ransom. Atkins's novel is a fictional look at that crime, which pushed Kelly into national attention and into gangster history. From the very beginning, when Kelly's car runs out of gas as he and his accomplice, during their getaway with Urschel, pressed into the floorboards of their car, the listener knows Kelly isn't exactly a criminal mastermind. Atkins chronicles the ensuing misadventures with expert period detail. Keeping up with him at every turn is veteran narrator Dick Hill, who recounts the story of the bungling kidnapper with a homespun delivery that perfectly captures the feel of Depression-era America. Fact and fiction combine with Hill's enjoyable performance to make for an entertaining and educational listen. A Putnam hardcover (Reviews, Feb. 22). (May) Copyright 2010 Reed Business Information.
Praise for Infamous
"In his compulsively readable latest, Atkins takes a revisionist look at the life and times of Machine Gun Kelly and the very bad woman who stood behind him....Bullets fly, gore puddles and, as the denouement approaches, oh how those pages turn. Atkins, who loves his characters colorful, makes readers love them too, and it doesn't much matter whether they're naughty or nice."--Kirkus Reviews
"Atkins brings to vivid life the henpecked George and the bloodthirsty Kathryn as he convincingly conjures up a past era. Not just for crime fans, this should appeal to a wide readership."--Publishers Weekly
"It's Atkins' prodigious research that makes this novel a compelling road trip through Depression-era America. He vividly portrays the Dust Bowl, foreclosures, the grinding poverty, gnawing hunger, desperation, and the rage at bankers (most of which resonate in today's America); and he captures the imminent end of the gangsters' heyday. Like many fine historical crime novels, Infamous offers a window on society, then and now."--Booklist