Author: Phillip Thompson
Price: $12.70 (paperback) / $7.69 (Kindle)
Publisher: Roundfire Books
Point of Sale: Amazon
Reviewed by: Chris Gerrib
Deep Blood is Phillip Thompson’s third novel. If his other two are anywhere near as good as this, I’ll have to add both to my list.
Thompson, a Marine who served in the First Gulf War, was born and raised in a small town in Mississippi, and in Deep Blood he returns to those roots. Deep Blood’s protagonist is Sam “Colt” Harper, a newly-elected sheriff in Lowndes County, Mississippi. Colt was also a Marine, fought in Iraq and as sheriff he brought one of his Marine buddies in as deputy. Oh, and Colt’s dad is the town’s drunk.
The story essentially starts with Colt finding a body in the local reservoir, that of Clifford Raines, a black teenager. Figuring out who killed the boy is part of the story, as well as sorting out his personal life and family history. Deep Blood is “southern-fried noir.” It has that dark edge, with characters who most definitely aren’t saints, dealing with tough hands dealt them by life as best they can.
I have to say that Thompson takes a dark view of race relationships, and his character’s language runs from salty to crude. But then this is noir, not Disney, so one should expect that. Having warned the sensitive reader, I have to say that I found Deep Blood a gripping read, and well worth the effort. There’s a saying in vaudeville to “always leave your audience wanting more.” Deep Blood is a short novel, and so I wanted more, but in a good way.
In short, for fans of hard-boiled crime novels, Deep Blood is a great read. Highly recommended.