Over Tumbled Graves
Over Tumbled Graves
By Jess Walter
Harper, Hardcover, 9780060393861, 384pp.
Publication Date: February 1, 2001
Spokane, Washington: a bustling city split by hurtling white-water falls. During a routine drug bust, Detective Caroline Mabry finds herself on a narrow bridge over the falls, face-to-face with a brutal murderer named Lenny Ryan. Within hours, the body of a young prostitute is found nearby, dumped along the riverbank. Then another. And another. Soon Caroline and her cynical mentor Alan Dupree are thrown headlong into the search for a serial murderer police have nicknamed the Southbank Strangler. But while Caroline hunts a killer, he may also be hunting her.
What follows is a novel that turns the usual serial killer story on its head, that confronts America's burgeoning fascination with psychopathology and murder and stares it down. Through one long, bloody summer, Caroline and Dupree remain one step behind a madman who seems to be communicating by killing women and growing bolder with each new body. And when Spokane is overrun by headline-grabbing FBI profilers, statisticians, and TV producers, the detectives are forced to grapple with the ever hungrier serial murder industry. Before it's all over, Caroline and Dupree uncover some hard truths about their city, their profession, and each other. And Caroline finds herself back at the river, facing an evil far more alarming than the one she thought she was chasing.
Rich with the darkly muted colors of the Pacific Northwest skies, peopled with characters of extraordinary depth and dimension, Over Tumbled Graves marks the debut of a novelist with unusual insight into the human psyche.
"(Walter's) powerful fiction debut....stands out from run-of-the-mill serial killer novels...."
-The Seattle Times
“Shifting like...currents, the story moves swiftly, promising a fast-paced thriller filled with inner turmoil as well as action.”
“Disquieting. Walter(’s)...incisive sensitivity...emerges as a bitter metaphor.”
-New York Times Book Review
“An original page-turner in this overcrowded genre.”
“Outstanding. Riveting. Never sacrifices action for emotional impact.”
-The Washington Post Book World
“(Walter’s) first novel is an accomplished character study...A very satisfying debut.”
“First rate writing speeds us to a perfectly foreshadowed plot twist and a gripping conclusion.”
“Suspenseful,challenging and intelligently written, Over Tumbled Graves is a first novel of considerable depth and insight.”
-The Dallas Morning News
“[An] intelligent, gripping, and genuinely scary novel...”
-Otto Penzler, Amazon.com
“Breathtaking.Moving.Insightful. Excellent quality of writing.”
-The Mystery Review