The Rock Hole : Red River Mystery

  • by Reavis Z. Wortham
  • Narrated by Traber Burns
  • Series: Red River Mystery
  • 8 hrs and 40 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

It’s a whole other country out there.
In 1964, when Ned Parker, farmer and part-time constable, is summoned to a cornfield one hot morning to examine the remains of a tortured bird dog, he discovers that there is a dark presence in their quiet community of Center Springs, Texas. Ned is usually confident handling moonshiners, drunks, and instances of domestic dispute. But when it comes to animal atrocities—which then turn to murder—the investigation spins beyond his abilities.
Ned combines forces with John Washington, a well-known black deputy sheriff from nearby Paris, Texas, to track down a disturbed individual who has become a threat to their small community.
As the case takes a dizzying series of twists and brings forth eccentric characters as well as several dead ends, Ned’s cranky friend, Judge O. C. Rains, is forced to contact the FBI. Then, sinister warnings that his family has been targeted by the killer lead Ned to the startling discovery that he knows the murderer very well. After the failed abduction of his precocious grandchildren, Top and Pepper, the old lawman becomes judge and jury to end what has become a murder spree in the Red River bottomlands. And it signals the end of an era in Center Springs.
In bald-headed, pot-bellied Ned Parker, Wortham has created an authentic American hero reminiscent of the best heroes and antiheroes in a story that blends country humor with heart-pounding suspense and ends with a stunning climax that may well shock our civilized sensibilities.
A Poisoned Pen Press Mystery


See More Like This

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Mystery, humor, thrills, and great characters!!

THE ROCK HOLE is an usual combination of old time Texas humor and chilling thriller. The year is 1964, and these small communities are mostly segregated by white, black, and American Indians. Ned Parker is the white Constable, who is married to an Indian; best friends with the Black Deputy Sheriff, John Washington; uncle to Cody, a brave Vietnam war veteran; and forever friend of an old codger, Judge O. C.Rains. After a car crash killed his parents, ten year old Top, has come to live with his grandparents. Pepper, Top's ten year old tomboy cousin, spends most of her time at their house also.

Though a Constable, Ned really considers himself a farmer, who from time to time, finds himself dealing with drunks, bootleggers, and fighting families. But a new evil has entered his community. Someone is viciously mutilating animals, and he seems to be escalating his violence. The communities in Texas and near by Oklahoma are affected. The chase is on to catch this person who also seems to have a grudge against Ned and his family.

This story is populated by wonderfully fleshed out characters, with a feeling of story telling that reminds me of TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD and A TIME TO KILL. The atmospheric descriptions took me right back to the good and bad times of the 1960s. It reads like a combination of small town community, and good old fashioned westerns. Great mystery, but feels like literature at it's finest. Great start to this series!
Read full review

- Byron

"To Kill a Mockingbird" Meets "Longmire"

I suppose I have Longmire on the brain because I have just finished that series (and it was worth every second). Just as in Longmire, I fell in love with these characters pretty quickly, as well as the small town constable's interactions with people he has known all of his life. The relationship between grandpa and Top is charming, and reminiscent of "To Kill a Mockingbird", partly because some of the narrative is told from Top's side, and partly because they're so damned likeable. The author does a nice job of evoking and integrating the tempo, issues, music and views of the early 1960s, and the insidious effects serving in the Vietnam conflict had on the lives of the young men sent there, and the small towns where they returned after they served. The mystery is a good one, with twists and turns, and false starts that mislead the listener. This was altogether worth the read, and I will be buying the next in the series.
Read full review

- Livia

Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-07-2011
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.