2016, National Public Radio
Interviewed by Terri Gross
2012, Prairie Schooner
Interviewed by Scott Winter
Mick Hardin, a combat veteran now working as an Army CID agent, is home on a leave that is almost done. His wife is about to give birth, but they aren’t getting along. His sister, newly risen to sheriff, has just landed her first murder case, and local politicians are pushing for city police or the FBI to take the case. Are they convinced she can’t handle it, or is there something else at work? She calls on Mick who, with his homicide investigation experience and familiarity with the terrain, is well-suited to staying under the radar. As he delves into the investigation, he dodges his commanding officer’s increasingly urgent calls while attempting to head off further murders. And he needs to talk to his wife.
With an investigator-hero unlike any in fiction, The Killing Hills is a dark and witty novel of betrayal and the way it so often shades into violence.
Summer Reading List 2021, Deep South Magazine
A Times [UK] Crime Club Pick of the Week
A Times [UK] Best New Thriller for November 2021
“[A] work of rural noir whose characters’ singular codes lead to constant surprises.”
—Wall Street Journal
One of the most sensitive, nuanced examinations of father and son relationships.
The Boston Globe
A generous reminiscence . . . ruminative and melancholy . . . Offutt somehow manages to summon compassion for his father. That, ultimately, is what makes this memoir so unexpectedly moving.”
The New York Times
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Offutt’s bold refusal to submit to nostalgic sentimentality, even as he admits defeat and forsakes his search for “home,” and his skill as prose stylist set this book apart from the many homecoming memoirs.
”The Good Brother” is a fine first novel by a fierce writer.
New York Times
“The story of Mr. Offutt’s journey is so rich and fantastic and desperately honest that it could stand alone. But twined with the slower, lovely wanderings of a man confronting wild nature in the womb of his wife, The Same River Twice is as moving as the current he must cross and recross to find his way.”
The New York Times Book Review
“Wariness is the main quality Offutt’s characters present to their fellow men — that and a devotion to solitude. Yet when Offutt’s characters carry their sense of solitude off to the busier, more populous parts of the American landscape, they can experience a chilling sense of alienation … For his Kentucky exiles, acting out can become a form of nostalgia.”
“Mr. Offutt learned to tell stories, which is what he does these days, exquisitely.”
The novel is an undeniable testament to the importance and clarity of Offutt’s voice in contemporary American literature.