Tag Archives: Mystery Novel

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 92: Blacktop Wasteland by S.A. Cosby

Does a son have to repeat his father’s transgressions and life choices?

It seemed like S.A. Cosby was trying to answer that question in his thrilling third novel, Blacktop Wasteland. I have seen this novel posted on my Instagram feed recently and several Goodreads friends posted about the book and I had to read it.

Beauregard “Bug” Montage is an excellent mechanic, devoted husband and father.  He has tried to leave the life of street racing and crime behind.  However, his auto mechanic shop direly needs business and Bug’s resources have hit the breaking point.  He takes part in one more robbery to steal diamonds from a local jewelry store.  In his desperate situation, Bug sees this opportunity as his only way out.  However, easy money never comes easily and Bug learns the painful lesson that a life of crime never solves your problems.

Bug reconnects with a former associate that tells him the robbery of a jewelry store will be quick, easy, and foolproof. Of course, nothing is foolproof, and the heist gets the attention of a local criminal kingpin and Bug may have crossed paths with the wrong person. Bug’s family is pulled into his last excursion of crime and it nearly costs him everything.  He hatches a plan to save his family and gets revenge on everyone that pulled him back into that life.

It has been a long time since I read a book that gave me holy s-word moments. Cosby’s fast-paced “southern noir” thriller kept me turning pages and got me invested in Bug’s journey out of darkness. Also, I appreciated how he brought up Bug’s connection to his father and how dangerous idolatry can become.

Blacktop Wasteland joins my favorite reads list of 2021 and Cosby’s visceral writing had me seeing Ving Rhames or Don Cheadle as Beauregard “Bug” Montage in a movie adapted from the novel. I’m looking forward to reading more of Cosby’s work and highly recommend this powerful, ultraviolent novel.

Wisdom From Kammbia Book Review 24: How The Light Gets In by Louise Penny

One of the great joys of reading is coming upon a series that you would have never read at first glance. This has happened to me with the Inspector Gamache Series by Louise Penny. I’m a not a big mystery or crime fiction reader. However, I read The Long Way Home two years ago and… Continue Reading

Book Review 107: A Trick of the Light by Louise Penny

“It’s exactly that. Lillian Dyson murdered, or tried to murder, many people. Not physically, but just as cruelly. By taking away their dreams. Their creations.” “Her weapon was her reviews,” said Normand. “They weren’t just reviews,” agreed Gamache. “Creative people know being reviewed, and sometimes badly, is part of the package. Not pleasant, but a… Continue Reading

Book Review 55: Consequences by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Miles Flint, a Retrieval Artist, was hired by a prominent couple on the moon colony of Armstrong to find their daughter who has become a Disappeared because of her political activities on several planets. Flint retrieved the daughter and reunited her with the parents.  However, the reunion was not a happy one and short-lived.  They… Continue Reading

Book Review 48: Extremes by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

What happens when a rogue scientist decides she wants to kill an entire moon city with a virus in order to create her own version of a superhuman race? That question is the basic plot of Extremes by Kristine Kathryn Rusch.  Extremes is the second novel in the multi-genre Retrieval Artist Series. Miles Flint has become… Continue Reading

Book Review 47: The Disappeared by Kristine Kathryn Rusch

Has anybody ever read a science fiction mystery? I must admit I love when authors combine genres in their books.  Dean Koontz is one of the masters of genre combining and twisting in his works. The Disappeared by Kristine Kathryn Rusch is the first novel I’ve read that combines a standard science fiction setting with a traditional… Continue Reading