After fastball phenom Prospero Stark’s baseball career craters in a Mexican jail, he retreats to a trailer park in the scorching Arizona desert. He lives in peaceful anonymity with a collection of colorful outcasts until someone leaves his former catcher’s severed hand on his doorstep. Beautiful, hard-living reporter Roxanne Santa Cruz, who keeps a .380 Colt and a bottle of Chivas in her car, joins Stark to help him uncover his friend’s fate, a dangerous pursuit that pits them against a ruthless gang of drug-dealing killers.
DOUBLE WIDE is a rollicking page-turner. As twisted and bumpy as a desert road at night. Leo Banks crafts a fast-paced tale filled with colorful characters. He displays an excellent ear for bitter, cynical dialog and an unsparing eye for desperate characters running on empty. Read it!
Double Wide is classic crime in its best new clothes, Goodis-style grand failure and Chandler’s streetwise knight welded to the same frame and left baking in the Arizona desert till only the essential remains. Great writing line to line, wonderful evocation of place, each sentence edged with grit and humor – here where death is another story’s start-up
The book is so good that it’s hard to believe it’s a debut novel. Banks crafted his fast-moving plot expertly. The yarn is exceptionally well-written, Banks’s descriptions of the Arizona desert so vivid that you’ll rush to turn up the air conditioner, his portrayals of his colorful characters so memorable that you’ll find yourself wondering what else those who survived the tale are up to once you finish the last page
DOUBLE WIDE is a fast-driving thriller. Dusty and wicked and satisfying.
Banks' strong noir debut will remind many of early Joe Lansdale. Smart dialogue helps propel the tight plot.