by Ace Atkins highlights Quinn Colson, a former Army Ranger
who has returned to his Mississippi hometown to become sheriff.
Action seekers should understand that this series is more
than a crime novel. It is also about the culture of the Deep
South and the importance of family within that culture.
Atkins intentionally chose Quinn to be an Army Ranger, because
of “their backgrounds. I grew up in a town not far from
Fort Benning, Georgia, which is where I developed my long
admiration for the Rangers and how tough they are. I knew
that a certain type of culture and individual are drawn to
this unit. I specifically made Quinn an Army Ranger because
he exemplifies the qualities of toughness and endurance.”
Atkins puts out two books a year. He writes the Spenser series
made famous by the late Robert B. Parker as well as his own
series with Quinn Colson. Both series’ plots move along
through the dialogue of the characters. There is also a similarity
in that the storyline is about how the characters live their
life, invoking honesty, toughness, and trust.
Atkins told blackfive.net, “Writing the Spenser books
is more of a challenge than writing the Quinn books. I not
only must write a really good novel, but must do so in the
style of Parker. I am constantly thinking, ‘what would
Bob do here.’ These two characters are similar in that
they understand the world is made up of good and bad.
do not have hypocrisy in any shape and form. I consider them
classic American heroes. Where the series differs is that
the Spenser books has an urban setting, while the Quinn books
are based around a rural environment.”
This storyline begins with Quinn pondering his next move as
he finishes up his term as sheriff. He must help solve a case
in which local lumber-mill owner Larry Cobb had his safe stolen,
literally. Besides money and jewels the contents of the safe
contain ledgers of Cobb’s crooked dealings. The family
element comes into play with Quinn trying to reconnect with
his estranged father, helping his drug addicted sister, and
contemplating his relationship with Anna Lee. She is someone
he has loved dearly since high school but is currently married
to an old friend of Quinn, a serious obstacle for both.
The Redeemers has a richness of characters whose
lives move the story along. More than just a crime story these
Quinn novels invoke morality, the enduring resilience of family
and community, and someone to root for.