Lord of Misrule (Google eBook)
A brilliant novel that captures the dusty, dark, and beautiful world of small-time horse racing, where trainers, jockeys, grooms and grifters vie for what little luck is offered at a run-down West Virginia track .
Tommy Hansel has a plan: run four horses, all better than they look on paper, at long odds at Indian Mound Downs, then grab the purse -- or cash a bet -- and run before anyone’s the wiser. At his side is Maggie Koderer, who finds herself powerfully drawn to the gorgeous, used up animals of the cheap track. She also lands in the cross-hairs of leading trainer Joe Dale Bigg. But as news of Tommy’s plan spreads, from veteran groom Medicine Ed, to loan shark Two-Tie, to Kidstuff the blacksmith, it’s Maggie, not Tommy or the handlers of legendary stakes horse Lord of Misrule, who will find what's valuable in a world where everything has a price.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - LibraryThing
What an unusual novel! I found Lord of Misrule a difficult read. It is not a "page turner that you can not wait to get back to". Ms. Gordon uses a staccato cadence and pacing which never settles into a comfortable flow. There are several deep dialects that never become familiar. You are not always sure who is speaking to whom, even occasionally whether human is speaking to human or to an animal. This is not a book about horse racing. It is a book about hardscrabble people in a hardscrabble place trying to get from one day to the next. Yes, the race track is the setting and framework, but the story is one of survival, hope and despair. Luck is always around the next corner, but never really at hand. I never felt that the characters were vivid, they were always a bit hazy and distant. I felt that I was looking into a shadow or a through a layer of film. The narrative is also sketchy and jumpy throughout, almost more lyrical poetry than prose at times. This is all certainly intentional and not necessarily a bad thing, just disconcerting at times. Lord of Misrule simply requires a good deal from the reader and will not resonate with everyone. Finally, there are several passages where the imagery suddenly devolves into vulgarity which many readers may find extreme.
Review: Lord of MisruleUser Review - Sierra - Goodreads
I liked this book but it wasn't very absorbing until about three-fourths of the way through. I found the narrative style to be very prose-y and lyrical which was nice but the language obscured the ... Read full review