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About the Author

Matt Bondurant is the author of three novels, the most recent of which is The Night Swimmer. Lawless--previously published as The Wettest County in the World--was a New York Times Editors' Choice, and one of the San Francisco Chronicle's 50 Best Books of the Year. His first novel, The Third Translation, was an international bestseller, translated into fourteen languages worldwide. He currently teaches literature and writing in the Arts and Humanities graduate program at the University of Texas at Dallas.


[An] engrossing novel...[Bondurant is] wonderful at evoking hisotrical atmosphere--the elaborate stills camouflaged in the woods, the music, the drunken gatherings that explode into shattering violence. --Entertainment Weekly
[An] utterly engaging fable of bootlegging, revenge and remorse...Bondurant will be compared to Cormac McCarthy. It's warranted: Both have a gift for describing brutality so clearly that we see beauty in the honesty. -Men's Journal
Bondurant is a nimble writer...[His] prose is lyrical when the whiskey floods in, but also when the blood flows out. -The New York Times Book Review
You have to go back to William Faulkner's novels about the Snopes clan to find the kind of cold-blooded Southern amorality that drives Matt Bondurant's second novel...Bondurant's prose is thick with the kind of blood-soaked descriptions that would do Cormac McCarthy proud. -Washington City Paper

Bondurant offers a fictionalized account of moonshining in Franklin (the wettest) County, VA, during and after Prohibition and the corruption and violence that led to the "Great Moonshine Conspiracy" trial of 1935. The author adds to the legend of the notorious Bondurant Boys, his grandfather Jack and Jack's brothers Forrest and Howard. No nice guys here-these are tough, violent men forced into moonshining by years of drought and failed tobacco crops during the Great Depression and confronted with a protection racket run by local law enforcement. Sherwood Anderson, who covered the trial for Liberty Magazine, also appears. VERDICT This somewhat uneven story is well read by Broadway actor Erik Steele. ["This is a cracklingly good novel, with plenty of action and local color," read the review of the Scribner hc, LJ 7/08.-Ed.]-Cliff Glaviano, formerly with Bowling Green State Univ. Libs., OH (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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