In Darkness Bids the Dead Goodbye Sheriff Pruitt, Deadhead, is at it again, keeping Elkhorn safe from meth makers and murderers while he tries to contend with the psychic maelstrom of his impending father- and grandfatherhood and stay strong for his pregnant wife, pregnant daughter, and his daughter's unsteady boyfriend.
McKinney unfolds this murder mystery like a tie-dye shirt preserved in a dime bag recovered from time warp, the mysteries of who killed Wilma Gillespie woven together with this mystery: when did we all get so old that we started burying the icons of our youth? And what is left for us? Plenty—if you take a ride with Sheriff Pruit in his cruiser. The narrative captures a compelling mix of small town folksiness and underworld grit, vivid characters in all their idiosyncratic neuroses and fragile humanity—criminals and victims, cops honest and corrupt, witnesses helpful and not, along with nosey neighbors and enigmatic ex-lovers.
Darkness provides edge-of-the-seat suspense along with surprising and satisfying revelations and a humorous tone that delivers the meditations of a luddite in the computer age trying to do some old fashioned detective work with all the new-fangled (if already slightly outdated) equipment.
This is a thoughtful, thought-provoking mystery that “furthers” Sheriff Gavin Pruitt's Deadhead and sleuthing careers in a wonderfully wrought novel that will delight Deadheads and mystery readers alike. McKinney's handling of Deadhead arcana is spot on, and his genuine appreciation for the richness of the Grateful Dead phenomenon as a setting for his exploration of the darkness in the human psyche helps make this a powerful sequel, and worthy successor, to Slipknot.
Reviews for Darkness Bids the Dead Goodbye
“Sheriff Pruitt is at it again, keeping Elkhorn safe from meth makers and murderers. A compelling mix of small town folksiness and underworld grit”
—Larry Strauss, author of Now’s the Time, and columnist for the Huffington Post
“Chase scenes, SWAT teams, and an unpredictable cast. Rides swift currents of corruption, betrayal, and intrigue.”
—Scott MacFarlane, The Hippie Narrative: A Literary Perspective on the Counterculture
“Plot twists, crooked cops, and other surprises. It's a good read, not just for Deadheads.”
—George Walker, Merry Prankster, Further Driver, Trouble Ahead, Trouble Behind
"Strange but true: Sheriff Gavin Pruitt really is both a Deadhead and a cop. And wrapping your mind around that conundrum makes for great reading."
—Dennis McNally, A Long Strange Trip
“A wonderfully wrought novel that will delight Deadheads and mystery readers alike.”
—Nicolas Meriwether, archivist for the Grateful Dead collection at UC, Santa Cruz, is also the editor of All Graceful Instruments: Contexts of the Grateful Dead Phenomenon.
"Unfolds like a great rock concert that you'll wish would never end."
—Peter Conners, Growing Up Dead: The Hallucinated Confessions of a Teenage Deadhead
“The subject is murder, black and foul, in a lush corner of the Pacific Northwest”
—Philip Baruth, The Millennium Shows and The Brothers Boswell