What is on my nightstand this week: Atlanta Burns by Chuck Wendig
Atlanta Burns is a high-school girl who has a pretty shitty life. Living way on the wrong side of the tracks, and her best friend as the book starts is either her shotgun, or her drug dealer, in fact those might be her only friends. I won’t go into great detail, part of the joy of this book is the slow burn it has across various plot lines that all get tied up over the course of the book. Needless to say, some thing pretty horrible has happened to Atlanta and she is just getting back to her life.
Back in school, she ends up helping out a few kids who are getting bullied, and because no good deed goes unpunished, Atlanta ends up getting on the wrong side of crooked cops, white supremacists, dog fighting promoters, backwoods clans, and really a really awful rock band.
There are some blurbs out there describing this book as Nancy Drew with a shotgun, which is kind of tame. I would say white-trash Veronica Mars captures it a bit better. Though, even that is not quite dark enough, Atlanta Burns, as a character, is out of the noir detective tradition. She is a hard-drinking (and drugging) not so great person, who keeps on doing the right thing, in spite of herself.