Lay Down My Sword and Shield

Lay Down My Sword and Shield

A Novel

Paperback - 1995
Average Rating:
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'As I stood there on my front porch that hot, breathless July day, leaning against the column with the six bullet holes, now worn and smooth, I could see Hack's whitewashed marker under the pin oaks in the Holland family cemetery... Four generations of my family were buried there.'Hack Holland is a product of the South, both old and new. Hard-drinking ex-POW and wealthy, progressive Democrat, he stands in the long shadow cast by his ancestors. When Holland's candidacy for a congressional seat brings him increasingly into conflict with those around him, his almost unwitting involvement with a violent civil rights conflict forces him to reassess his future - and his past...
Publisher: New York : Hyperion, [1995], c 1971.
Edition: First Hyperion edition
ISBN: 9780786889501
0786889500
Characteristics: 389 pages ;,18 cm.

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j
jimg2000
Jan 22, 2014

Originally copyrighted in 1971 and introduced Burke's Hackberry Holland as a restless lawyer involved with the farmworkers union movement while making a bid for a congressional seat. Readers were let into Holland's nightmares in the North Korean POW camp and the steamy world of Texas power brokers.

l
lukasevansherman
Dec 05, 2013

Possibly because he's considered a genre writer, possibly because he's so prolific, or possibly because critics are idiots, James Lee Burke has never gotten the attention he deserves. Before he had success with the Dave Robicheuax series, he wrote this book about an alcoholic, self-destructive, but noble and decent lawyer named Hack Holland. This isn't a mystery, but tackles many of the usual issues that inform his work: the South, race, injustice, power and its abuses. He would revive the character for "Rain Gods" and "Light of the World," which is one of his best.

7
7626dee
Sep 12, 2013

Good introduction to an interesting character but too many flaws to be a real hero. I will read on to see how Burke humanizes this flawed knight.

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j
jimg2000
Jan 22, 2014

Since then I've come to believe that one's crimes and private guilt, those obsessions that we hide like that ugly black diamond in the soft tissue of the mind, are really not very important to other people.

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