by Greg Iles
HarperCollins, 2014. 791 pgs. Mystery
Penn Cage, former prosecutor and now mayor of Natchez, Mississippi, is suddenly faced with his aging and ailing father's imminent arrest for the mercy killing of his former nurse. Penn's father Tom refuses to share what happened on Viola's last night, so Penn begins his own investigation and all Hades breaks loose. Suddenly Penn and everyone he loves are threatened by the Double Eagles, a brazen but shadowy spinoff from the Klan who whose murders and tortures have gone unpunished for decades. Henry Sexton, a small-town newspaperman, has pursued the Double Eagles for years and as he, Penn, and Penn's Pulitzer Prize winning fiancé try to find the truth and bring the wicked to justice the murders and terrors increase and Tom Cage may not be able to be saved if the Double Eagles are to be stopped. Rich in history, culture, and the Gothic sorrows of the deeply divided Deep South, Natchez Burning is a fine story, filled with suspense and difficult choices. Forewarning: Contains graphic violence and sex.