The Tilted World by Tom Franklin and Beth Ann Fennelly
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: William Morrow
Publication Date: 2013
Source: Copy provided by the publisher
The Short Version:
The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 is the background for a story of bootleggers, revenue agents, an orphaned baby and unexpected love.
Why I Read It:
I have been a fan of Tom Franklin since I read Hell at the Breech and when I found out he’d written this one with his wife (an award winning poet) I knew I had to read it.
From the publisher:
Set against the backdrop of the historic flooding of the Mississippi River, The Tilted World is an extraordinary tale of murder and moonshine, sandbagging and saboteurs, and a man and a woman who find unexpected love, from Tom Franklin, the acclaimed author of the New York Times bestseller Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter, and award-winning poet Beth Ann Fennelly
The year is 1927. As rains swell the Mississippi, the mighty river threatens to burst its banks and engulf everything in its path, including federal revenue agent Ted Ingersoll and his partner, Ham Johnson. Arriving in the tiny hamlet of Hobnob, Mississippi, to investigate the disappearance of two fellow agents who’d been on the trail of a local bootlegger, they are astonished to find a baby boy abandoned in the middle of a crime scene.
I’m not going to say much more than that portion of the publisher’s synopsis because I think that the less you know about the plot of this one the more you’ll enjoy it.
I’ll admit that I’m predisposed to like anything written by Tom Franklin but when I heard that his latest book was a collaboration with his wife Beth Ann Fennelly who I knew was an award winning poet I was pretty sure I’d love it. I was right. This is a wonderfully atmospheric story set in a small town on the banks of the Mississippi river in the midst of historic flooding.
There are bootleggers, revenue agents, an orphaned baby, future president Hoover and a levee that if breached could destroy a small town and save New Orleans.
It’s a wonderfully written story of a time and place with interesting and complex characters. I loved it just as much as I thought I would and highly recommend it. Franklin’s writing has always captivated me and this collaboration with Fennelly is just beautifully written. There is action, adventure, romance, danger, friendship and betrayal.
I loved it. You should read it.