- Unbeliebable: White House turns Bieber petition response into immigration screed
- Obama signs law denying Iran ambassador’s visa, but says law is ‘advisory’
- Mich. judge to laughing convicted killer: ‘I hope you die in prison’
- Man charged in Kansas City-area highway shootings
- Keystone XL pipeline still on hold after State Dept. decision
- Fla. man charged with killing 16-month-old son to play Xbox undisturbed
- Drones from the deep: Pentagon develops ocean-floor attack robots
- Michigan mayor slaps back atheists’ try to erect ‘reason station’ at city hall
- PHILLIPS: Where is the conservative establishment?
- 7.5-magnitude earthquake shakes southern Mexico
Review: `Bent Road’ is haunting family story
“Bent Road” (Dutton), by Lori Roy: In the late 1960s, Arthur Scott flees from the race riots in Detroit, uprooting his wife and three children to return to small-town Kansas and the comforts of farmland, family and a racially homogenous town.
It doesn’t help that Evie bears a striking resemblance to Eve, Arthur’s younger sister, whose murder decades before remains unsolved. Evie finds Eve’s old dresses and things in her grandmother’s house, and she constructs an imaginary friend from them, a sympathetic adult to console her in the midst of her loneliness.
It also doesn’t help that when the Scotts arrive, a young girl with the same stature and blond hair as diminutive Evie (and by association, the late Eve the elder) goes missing and is presumed dead. The primary suspect is Evie’s uncle Ray. Townspeople suspect that he also killed Eve, though he was never charged.
Ray is now married to Arthur’s other sister, Ruth. He’s a violent alcoholic, and Ruth is his primary punching bag.
Everything about this unnamed Kansas town is violent, from the sharp curves of Bent Road to the young boys who kill kittens for fun to Arthur himself, who turns to physical means to protect his family from Ray’s rampages.
The violence, along with the relative unease of the other Scotts’ response to it, is depicted in short glimpses rather than the whole picture. It’s an even more effective style when acts of violence are perceived through the children’s eyes.
“Bent Road,” Lori Roy’s debut novel, is haunting and atmospheric, set in a place where “everyone knows everything about everybody,” yet acts on misinformation and half-truths, with devastating consequences.
TWT Video Picks
Women losing coverage under Obamacare, too
- Scalia to students on high taxes: At a certain point, 'perhaps you should revolt'
- Former Ranger breaks silence on Pat Tillman death: I may have killed him
- Special Forces' suicide rates hit record levels casualties of 'hard combat'
- Feds approve powdered alcohol; 'Palcohol' available later this year
- Justice at last: 'Evil woman' outed for grabbing girl's game ball
- EDITORIAL: Mark Warner running scared?
- Hillary swoons at admitted illegal immigrant: 'Wow,' you're 'incredibly brave'
- U.S. Navy to turn seawater into jet fuel
- Army goes to war with National Guard, seizes Apache attack helicopters
- CHARLES: Holder's undermining of the law deserving of contempt
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.