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5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it
Oh, where to start.....I absolutely loved The Tilted World by Tom Franklin and Beth Ann Fennelly! I literally started the book on a Sunday morning and feverishly read until I turned the last page the same night.

Franklin and Fennelly have set their book in 1927 Mississippi - at the time of one of the greatest natural disasters ever to occur in the US. The...
Published 4 days ago by Luanne Ollivier

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Subtle, historical fiction with natural catastrophe at it's core.
I enjoyed the sense of 1920s American Deep South with it's themes of prohibition and bootlegging. The scenes of natural catastrophe, the great Mississippi flood of 1927, are well evoked and the characters credible.

I enjoyed the building relationship between Ingersoll, prohibition agent, and Dixie Clay, bootlegger which was never going to be easy and is nicely...
Published 3 months ago by JK


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Subtle, historical fiction with natural catastrophe at it's core., 30 Mar 2014
By 
JK "Julie K." (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tilted World (Hardcover)
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I enjoyed the sense of 1920s American Deep South with it's themes of prohibition and bootlegging. The scenes of natural catastrophe, the great Mississippi flood of 1927, are well evoked and the characters credible.

I enjoyed the building relationship between Ingersoll, prohibition agent, and Dixie Clay, bootlegger which was never going to be easy and is nicely played out against the growing danger and revelations as the waters continue to rise but; those elements of tension and anxiety didn't seem to build to the necessary level to hook me in. I felt there was something missing all of the way through this novel.

Not enough happens and what does happen is dealt with lightly. In the face of a natural disaster of this magnitude I expected scenes of terrific energy and movement. The novel uses some of that but it's painted into the background and remains too subtle for my own personal taste.

The Tilted World is well written and well planned and has a decent sense of history unfortunately; the story at the heart of all of that work didn't grip me and I read the book without ever feeling involved.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars (3.5 stars) `Murder and moonshine', 30 Sep 2013
By 
Roman Clodia (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tilted World (Hardcover)
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Mississippi, 1927: in an age of Prohibition Dixie Clay is a bootlegger, brewing illegal alcohol. When Prohibition agent Ingersoll comes into her life, it's to investigate the mysterious disappearance of his colleagues - but a motherless baby, and the rising flood of the Mississippi itself will force them into a relationship that will change their lives.

This is one of those books which I admired but which failed to move me emotionally. Steeped in a sense of time and place, this has an epic sense of 1920s American deep south gothic about it - and yet, somehow, there's something missing at its heart. Despite the lovely writing, this book never surprised me, or caught me up in its world, or made me catch my breath, or kept me awake when I should have been asleep.

The plot of human relationships played out against an uncaring natural world is one which also permeates Ann Weisgarber's The Promise, a book I read recently and which captured my imagination in a way that this never quite managed. So a good read but one which sadly lacked the emotional potency that I expected.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it, 9 July 2014
By 
Luanne Ollivier - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tilted World (Hardcover)
Oh, where to start.....I absolutely loved The Tilted World by Tom Franklin and Beth Ann Fennelly! I literally started the book on a Sunday morning and feverishly read until I turned the last page the same night.

Franklin and Fennelly have set their book in 1927 Mississippi - at the time of one of the greatest natural disasters ever to occur in the US. The flood flattened 'almost a million homes, drowning twenty-seven thousand square miles and the water remained for four months. Over 330,000 people were rescued from trees, roofs, and levees."

Dixie Clay Holliver lives along the Mississippi at a bend in the river called Hobnob. Dixie's life isn't quite what she imagined it would be when she married Jesse. Turns out that Jesse is a moonshiner. The loss of her infant son has only added to her grief at the direction her life has taken. But, Dixie does the cooking now - she's better at it than Jesse.

Teddy Ingersoll is a revenuer. In this time of prohibition, Teddy and his partner Ham are always on the move. On their way to Hobnob to investigate the disappearance of two other agents, they come across the lone survivor of a shoot out - an infant boy. Inexplicably, Ingersoll is determined to find a home for the child. When they arrive in Hobnob, Dixie Clay is mentioned as woman who might take in an orphan.

And with that, Dixie and Ingersoll's lives and fates are crossed.

The Tilted World is such a strong novel is every sense of the world. The characters are brilliant. I was so captured by Dixie Clay - her strength, fortitude and abilities belie the hurt beneath her tough exterior. Ingersoll is much the same, with that same strength and fortitude, but no real purpose or direction in his heart.

The setting is just as much of a character in the book as Dixie and Ingersoll. Franklin and Fennelly have done a phenomenal job in bringing time and place to the page. The detailed descriptions of the town, the woods and most of all, the water created vivid mental images for this reader.

Dual narratives are used in The Tilted World to good effect, allowing the reader to be privy to the thoughts of both protagonists.

The Tilted World exemplifies storytelling at it's finest. I was completely caught up in Franklin and Fennelly's tale. I knew what I wanted to happen, I was afraid of what might happen and I couldn't read fast enough to see what did happen. The Tilted World is absolutely recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Tilted World, 24 Jun 2014
By 
Arthur Dooley (N Wales) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tilted World (Hardcover)
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Authors, Tom Franklin and Beth Ann Fennelly;s 'The Tilted World' could be described as 'simmering'. An oft used description of any work set in the deep South of the USA. This novel set in prohibition America of the 1920's pitches bootlegger against the forces of law and order,.all set against a backdrop of a rising river which threatens to burst and unleash hell.
There is a touch of Gone with the Wind in the quiet romance which runs through the novel. The author's appearing to be aiming at a sweeping almost cinematic feel to the work.
Not everyone's cup of tea-or moonshine!-to be sure but engaging enough to keep the reader turning the pages until the end.
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5.0 out of 5 stars poetic, 14 Jun 2014
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This review is from: The Tilted World (Kindle Edition)
Wonderful insight into a forgotten tragedy. Powerful narrative and vivid characters. Highly recommended. Read also Crooked Letter Crooked Letter.
Hhh
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4.0 out of 5 stars Two words – ‘cracking story’!, 6 May 2014
By 
Lily (Sheffield UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tilted World (Hardcover)
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It sets the scene very effectively and the characterisations are well rounded. In some senses it is not an overly demanding or thought-provoking tale but its description of the context of the action and the main characters is cinematic. Against the backdrop of the impending catastrophe of the Mississippi floods the imagery conjured in the reader is very effective. The developing love (story) between Ingersoll and Dixie Clay is touching and believable. The whole piece has a very ‘American film feel-good ending’ to it but it’s not too over the top. The only gripe is that the denouement of the bad-guy of the story comes across as somewhat truncated but perhaps that’s the skill of the thing....you get to dislike him to such an extent that you want him to suffer! Overall, a very satisfying story that rattles along taking you and your imagination with it effortlessly.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A goodly tale well told!, 6 May 2014
By 
G. Wylie "george11171" (Scottish Highlands) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tilted World (Hardcover)
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This is an exciting, fast moving and well written novel describing the frightening natural and human forces exposed as rising river levels threaten the levees of the Mississippi of the 1920's and the communities involved. I found I was dragged into the tale which held my attention to its end. Interesting faction which makes for an excellent read.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Southern bootleggers, romance and a bit of history..., 29 Dec 2013
By 
Me read (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tilted World (Hardcover)
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I was looking forward to this but usually when books are co-authored I go in with a bit of trepidation as it can seem sometimes like a book of two half's. Both authors here though have a sterling reputation so I went into it with high hopes.

The story itself is interesting and I'm always drawn to books with an historical element but there was just something missing for me here. The storytelling is good, if a bit flowery, but some parts just seemed like imagery for the sake of it. I don't know the first thing about prohibition so that side of it all was fascinating and the cultural and historical aspects were very interesting but what started off as a good read soon became mired down in the romantic side of things. I like a good romance as much as the next person but it wasn't really what I had expected this to be about, ultimately.

It's a good story and well written it just didn't draw me in as much as I'd hoped it would.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Goin' down, 24 Sep 2013
By 
Quiverbow (Kent, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tilted World (Hardcover)
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In the few months between the end of 1926 and spring of the following year, unprecedented rainfall caused the Mississippi to swell to dangerous levels. It was only a matter of time before the banks of the river collapsed and flooded the Delta. On Good Friday, 1927 it did just that.

Set in the fictional town of Hobnob, after being given the task of closing down a moonshine still, two prohibition agents are missing so another pair are sent to find out what happened to their predecessors. This isn't really a crime/thriller, as everyone knows what has happened, as the local moonshine supplier, Jesse, has the whole town on his payroll, including the police. It's more of a what's-going-to-happen-to-one-of-the-agents-and-Jesse's-wife story. Unfortunately, when agent Ingersoll hands over an orphaned child to the wife, Dixie Clay, you'll telegraph it all from way off.

As much as the premise of this novel made it an interesting attraction, that it's set in the southern states makes certain passages of the text impenetrable for non-natives. That isn't the sole reason for it being a difficult book to read; I thought parts of it to be quite tedious. The word pictures for the environments didn't do much for me and parts of the dialogue seemed a bit risible. (That may be a consequence of being English.) I couldn't generate any excitement for what was going on; there was no enthusiasm for any of the characters, and I certainly didn't care what happened.

The title arises from a translation of what the local Indians called a particular stream near to where Dixie lives and this is the USA version. The authors' UK editor helpfully suggested some changes in the text to prevent embarrassment when this book is published here. According to that copyreader, the baby should be given a different name, as, in the UK apparently, `Billy' is a childish euphemism for penis. Er, no it isn't. It makes you wonder if some of these editors know what they're on about.

What the two authors, a Mr Franklin and Miss Fennelly, had better hope is earmarked for change is narrative such as that in a diner involving a waitress when a character, "...reached to give her fanny a pat". Now that would be embarrassing.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Powerful and Moving as the River It Follows, 27 Sep 2013
By 
Stephanie De Pue (Wilmington, NC USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Tilted World (Hardcover)
THE TILTED WORLD is the latest thriller from Edgar Award winning Tom Franklin, author of the New York Times bestselling Crooked Letter, Crooked Letter, which I've read, loved, and reviewed in these Amazon pages. The author has also published the highly-thought of Hell at the Breech, Smonk: Or Widow Town and Poachers. TILTED WORLD has been co-written with the author's wife award-winning poet Beth Ann Fennelly, Great with Child: Letters to a Young Mother. It is set in the authors' native American South. In a small town in deepest Mississippi, not that far, I imagine, from Oxford, MI, where the couple teach at the University of Mississippi. During the momentous great flood of the Mississippi of 1927, certainly a forecast of the devastation that was to come with 2005's Hurricane Katrina. And it offers lots of Southern Gothic, not to mention southern-fried menace, to its readers.

The book is a tender tale of murder and whisky, illegal during the Prohibition period in which it is set. Moonshine, sandbagging and saboteurs, a man and a woman who find unexpected love, all set against the massive Mississippi. Six months of unending rains swell the mighty river. Finally, it threatens to burst its banks and drown everything in its path. And that would include federal revenue agents Ted Ingersoll and Ham Johnson, who just then arrive at the tiny town of Hobnob, MI. They have been sent down to investigate the disappearance of two of their fellow agents, revenuers, as they were known, who'd been on the trail of a local bootlegger. On their way, they find a baby boy abandoned at a crime scene.

Ingersoll, an orphan raised by nuns, feels he must find the infant a home. His search leads him to Dixie Clay Holliver, a strong woman married too young to a philandering charming bootlegger. Dixie Clay has lost a child to illness. She feels she must grab this second chance at motherhood. Ingersoll and Dixie Clay are drawn to each other as they meet. But he has no idea that she's the producer of the best booze in the county, named Black Lightning. And that she may be connected to the federal agents' disappearance. And Dixie Clay knows that, despite his apparent kindness and gentleness, Ingersoll is a revenuer, her natural enemy. Then Ingersoll learns that a saboteur, planning a catastrophe along the river that would drown the tiny hamlet of Hobnob, may be among the townspeople.

CROOKED LETTER was nominated for nine awards and won the Los Angeles Times Book Prize and the prestigious Crime Writers' Association's Gold Dagger Award. A story from Franklin's POACHERS collection was an Edgar winner. The author won a 2001 Guggenheim Fellowship and teaches in the University of Mississippi's MFA program. Fennelly has won grants from the NEA, United States Artists, and a Fulbright fellowship to Brazil. Her honors include the Kenyon Review Prize. She directs the University of Mississippi's MFA program. The Franklins are evidently both fine writers, and give us an atmospheric, resonant small southern town at a critical moment in its history. Their narrative and descriptive writing are excellent, their plotting complex, well able to hold my attention, and their characters so insightfully, sharply drawn that I couldn't help but sympathize with even the nastiest of them. The authors draw an extraordinary picture of their chosen time and place, while giving us an involving thriller, all in exquisite, poetic language. The book is powerful and moving as the river it follows.
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The Tilted World
The Tilted World by Beth Ann Fennelly (Hardcover - 26 Sep 2013)
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