Down Don't Bother Me: A Novel (Paperback)
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A hugely entertaining debut—the first novel in a wickedly funny gothic mystery series set in the withering landscape of the southern Illinois coal country known as “little Egypt”—that blends the wry humor of Kevin Wilson, the dark violence of Urban Waite, and the electric atmosphere of Greg Iles.
In the depths of the Knight Hawk, one of the last working collieries in downstate Illinois, the body of a reporter is found, his mini-recorder tied around his neck and a notepad stuffed in his mouth.
The Knight Hawk’s owner, Matthew Luster, isn’t happy. He wants answers—and he doesn’t want the cops or any more press poking into his business. To protect himself and the operation, he turns to Slim, a mine employee with a reputation for “bloodhounding”-finding lost souls when the police can’t or won’t. Luster needs Slim to locate a missing photographer named Beckett, a close associate of the victim . . . who just happens to be his son-in-law.
A hard-working single father barely making ends meet, Slim accepts the job—after Luster offers him a guaranteed pension and job security for life. But when you make a deal with the devil, you’re going to get burned . . . . and now Slim is all too close to the flames. Circumstances have lead him into the grimy underworld of Little Egypt, Illinois—a Babel’s Tower of rednecks, rubes, freaks, tweakers, gun nuts, and aging hippies-and it quickly becomes clear that he’s much more involved in the murder than an innocent man should be.
Down Don’t Bother Me marks the emergence of a wildly assured mystery novelist, and of a series set in the fresh and brutal landscape of southern Illinois.
About the Author
Jason Miller is half of the Miller Brothers writing team, creators of the critically acclaimed graphic novel Redball 6. He lives in Nashville, Tennessee.
“Long stretches of this unusual first novel would seem to require guitar accompaniment. The genre conventions-treacherous women, double-crossing friends, greedy moneymen-seem fresh in Miller’s sensory-rich language….Here’s a strong talent just getting under way.”
“Fans of FX’s Justified TV series, as well as the show’s Elmore Leonard source material, will welcome the tough-talking Slim and the eccentric cast of characters he meets along the way in this series launch by the coauthor of the graphic novel Redball Six.”
— Library Journal
“Down Don’t Bother Me marks the emergence of a wildly assured mystery novelist, and of a series set in the fresh and brutal landscape of southern Illinois.”
— New Orleans Public Library
“In his first novel, set in the hardly welcoming world of southern Illinois coal country, he is funny, smart, and extremely self-assured in his writing, creating a book that is almost as addicting as the meth that has taken over the town of Little Egypt, Illinois.”
— Mystery Scene
“Miller brings the reader into the cold Illinois landscape with his vivid imagery.”
— Life Sentence
“Miller’s first novel is raw, gritty and darkly comedic. The first-person POV is perfect for this telling, and readers will fall for Slim quickly. His relationship with his teenage daughter Anci, while typical of the teenage years, is refreshingly real. Overall a fantastic debut novel.”
— RT Book Reviews
“While this novel is funny and violent, it also chronicles the soul-sapping meanness and danger of work in the mines.
— Memphis Commercial Appeal
“Jason Miller has delivered a crime novel with all the satisfactions of the genre, coupled with a serious, resonant subtext and the promise of more adventures to come for his offbeat protagonist.”
— Chapter 16
“Slim is, right out of the gate, right up there with Spenser, Walt Longmire, Patrick Kenzie, and so on. Right there, Miller’s given people a reason to enjoy this book and come back for a sequel or three.”