Tom Franklin


Three works of 21st-century fiction that provoke, dazzle, and delight.



Mississippi native Tom Franklin earned comparisons to none other than William Faulkner with the publication of Hell at the Breach, his tale of vengeance and violence in an Alabama town at the close of the 19th century.  His riveting new novel Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter, also examines crime and kinship in a small Southern community, but brings the action to the 1970s mileu of his own boyhood.  Here, Tom Franklin recommends three compelling works of fiction.


Books by Tom Franklin




The Typist

By Michael Knight


"Knight's story of a post-WWII football game in Tokyo is brilliantly imagined and rendered, with the devastated Japansese landscape an amazing setting. My favorite aspect of this novel, though, is the relationship between its narrator and General MacArthur's son, Arthur. This is Michael Knight's finest book to date."




By John Reimringer


"An amazing novel. Though I read it several months ago, it's stayed with me in a way few books do. It's a deeply profound character study of a priest at odds with his own lust and emotions. It's also funny, shocking, profane and, ultimately, deeply moving and gorgeous."





The Mysterious Secret of the Valuable Treasure

By Jack Pendarvis


"If you think the title is funny, wait'll you read the book. But it's much, much more than merely "funny": Pendarvis tightropes between comedy and tragedy as well anyone working these days, and the results are stories to revisit again and again. Just read "Sex Devil" and you'll be hooked. I promise."


July 25: On this day in 1834 Samuel Taylor Coleridge died of heart disease at the age of sixty-one.

Crime fiction legends Dennis Lehane and Michael Connelly discuss the new book that unites their beloved sleuths Patrick Kenzie and Harry Bosch.

Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
Paradise and Elsewhere

Canadian short story marvel Kathy Page emerges as the Alice Munro of the supernatural from these heartfelt tales of shapeshifting swimmers, mild-mannered cannibals, and personality-shifting viruses transmitted through kisses.


When a persuasive pastor arrives in a sleepy farm town, his sage influence has otherworldly results (talking sheep, a mayor who walks on water). But can he pull off the miracle of finding kindly local Liz Denny the love of her life?  Small wonder looms large in this charmer from Andre Alexis.

The Hundred-Year House

When a poetry scholar goes digging through the decrepit estate of his wife's family to uncover a bygone arts colony's strange mysteries, he awakens a tenacious monster: his mother-in-law. A wickedly funny take on aging aristocracies from author Rebecca Makkai (The Borrower).