The Bayou Trilogy

Under the Bright Lights, Muscle for the Wing, and The Ones You Do


By Daniel Woodrell

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$22.99 CAD

This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around April 28, 2011. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.

A hard-hitting, critically acclaimed trilogy of crime novels from an author about whom New York magazine has written, “What people say about Cormac McCarthy . . . goes double for [Woodrell]. Possibly more.”

In the parish of St. Bruno, sex is easy, corruption festers, and double-dealing is a way of life. Rene Shade is an uncompromising detective swimming in a sea of filth.

As Shade takes on hit men, porn kings, a gang of ex-cons, and the ghosts of his own checkered past, Woodrell’s three seminal novels pit long-entrenched criminals against the hard line of the law, brother against brother, and two vastly different sons against a long-absent father.

The Bayou Trilogy highlights the origins of a one-of-a-kind author, a writer who for over two decades has created an indelible representation of the shadows of the rural American experience and has steadily built a devoted following among crime fiction aficionados and esteemed literary critics alike.

  • "Woodrell writes drolly and pungently of rednecks and swamp rats with the affection and exasperation of a man who has spent his life among them ... The Bayou Trilogy stands with the best crime fiction of its period."
    St. Louis Post-Dispatch
  • "Old fans and new readers alike out to be grateful....The novels showcase Woodrell's evolution as a writer....Woodrell's The Bayou Trilogy supplies all the pleasure of hard-boiled noir: laconic cynicism, casually colorful characters (a diner owner, for instance, is described as having 'slightly more than a basic issue of a nose') and a hero whose feet of clay make his dedication to law and order all the more admirable."
    Chicago Tribune
  • "There's poetry in Woodrell's mayhem, each novel-and scene-full of gritty and memorable Cajun details."
    Publishers Weekly, starred review
  • "Really cool . . . Jump on these three top-shelf books."
    Library Journal
  • "The Bayou Trilogy is more than a landmark of crime fiction; it is an impressive and important addition to American letters. Bravo, Daniel Woodrell, and long live Rene Shade."
  • "What people say about Cormac McCarthy . . . goes double for [Woodrell]. Possibly more."
    New York Magazine
  • A backcountry Shakespeare . . . The inhabitants of Daniel Woodrell's fiction often have a streak that's not just mean but savage; yet physical violence does not dominate his books. What does dominate is a seasoned fatalism . . . Woodrell has tapped into a novelist's honesty, and lucky for us, he's remorseless that way."
    Los Angeles Times
  • "Daniel Woodrell writes in sentences that could be ancient carvings on a tree."
    Chicago Tribune
  • "Woodrell is the least-known major writer in the country right now."
    Dennis Lehane, USA Today
  • "Daniel Woodrell has quietly built a career that whould be the envy of most American novelists today."
    Washington Times
  • "Poetic prose and raw dialogue . . . dark-hued suspense."
    Washington Post Book World, on Under the Bright Lights
  • "A gritty, atmospheric slice of crime fiction . . . a superior piece of narrative noir."
    Kirkus, on Under the Bright Lights
  • "Vitality pulses from this perfectly paced book . . . a flawless novel."
    San Francisco Examiner, on Under the Bright Lights
  • "Sly and powerful."
    John D. MacDonald, on Under the Bright Lights
  • "As steamy as the bayou country that is its setting."
    The Washington Post Book World, on Under the Bright Lights
  • "Daniel Woodrell is stone brilliant--a Bayou Dutch Leonard, steeped in rich Louisiana language. Muscle for the Wing is vicious, colloquial, dark and--most surprisingly--brutally funny. To read it is to enter a superbly realized universe of surprises."
    James Ellroy, author of LA Confidential and Blood's A Rover
  • "Off-the-wall characters, quirky and bizarre, yet as authentic as any I've ever met in a novel. Woodrell succeeds--in fact triumphs . . . and spins a hell of a yarn to boot."
    The Washington Post Book World, on Muscle for the Wing
  • "The colorful characters and piquant tongues in which they speak . . . really have us swooning . . . All offer hot-breathed testimony to the human gumbo that is St. Bruno."
    The New York Times, on Muscle for the Wing
  • "Woodrell does for the Ozarks what Raymond Chandler did for Los Angeles or Elmore Leonard did for Florida."
    LA Times, on Muscle for the Wing
  • "Characters as screwy and dangerous as any in Elmore Leonard, as a sense of pace and language that never warns you whether a scene or sentence will end in a burst of poetry or a hail of bullets."
    Kirkus, on The Ones You Do
  • "Deeply atmospheric and oozing with the mojo of the swamp . . . Woodrell's work echoes that of William Kennedy, William Faulkner, and Walter Mosley . . . Fine writing."
    The Chicago Tribune, on The Ones You Do
  • "The pages snap, crackle, and pop. Woodrell's writing reminds me of the late, great John D. MacDonald, the kind of keen eye for the local detail, but he walks his own walk and talks his own talk."
    Barry Gifford, on The Ones You Do

On Sale
Apr 28, 2011
Page Count
496 pages
Mulholland Books

Daniel Woodrell

About the Author

Five of Daniel Woodrell‘s published novels were selected as New York Times Notable Books of the Year. Tomato Red won the PEN West Award for the Novel in 1999. Woodrell lives in the Ozarks near the Arkansas line with his wife, Katie Estill.

Learn more about this author