Reviews - What do customers think about Louisiana Breakdown?
Shepard at his very best Mar 28, 2007
Two centuries ago, the townspeople of Grail, Louisiana made a deal with the entity they call the Good Gray Man. The Good Gray Man promised good fortune to the town as long as it provided him with a Midsummer Queen he found acceptable. Accordingly, every twenty years, the town elects a 10-year-old girl to be their Midsummer Queen, the person who draws all of the town's bad luck to her for the next two decades until the next queen is selected, and the Good Gray Man comes to take her away forever.
As this year's Midsummer's Night Eve approaches, the town prepares to choose a new Queen. The reigning Queen, the exquisite Vida Dumars, knows her time is short, that the Good Gray Man will soon come for her. Although Vida has faithfully served as the town's Queen, she's not ready to go-thus, she prays for a champion to appear.
Enter one Jack Mustaine, who blows into town after his BMW breaks down outside of Grail. Vida casts her spells on Jack, and he falls for her like a ton of bricks. But is Jack the champion she seeks? That's a question nobody can answer until Jack comes face to face with the Good Gray Man.
Filled with tension and lurking menace, peopled by fascinating characters, LOUISIANA BREAKDOWN provides further evidence that Lucius Shepard is one of the most original and talented writers working in the field of dark fantasy today. In its first six pages, Shepard creates a living, breathing microcosm, a realistic stage free from cliché. He peoples this world with characters so vivid they threaten to step off the page. He then proceeds to tell a story about good, evil, love, superstition, and destiny, using the traditional elements of dark fantasy to explore his characters' psyches. Told with exquisite compassion, Shepard's novella provided one of 2003's more satisfying reading experiences. Illustrated by J. K. Potter, it's also one of the nicest packages Golden Gryphon has ever offered.
An imaginative and thought-provoking tale Apr 9, 2003
Louisiana Breakdown is an impressively written and thoroughly entertaining novel by Lucius Shepard that blends superstition and lore with faith, potions, and machinations. When a new figure arrives in a small Louisiana because his BMW breaks down, he becomes caught up in the town's tradition of appointing a ten-year-old Midsummer Queen every twenty years. A dark fantasy, Louisiana Breakdown is commended as an imaginative and thought-provoking tale of the fantastic.