Pistol Fanny’s Hank & Delilah
by Annie Rose Welch
Especially if she’s the one who robbed your bank, took you hostage, and dumped you unconscious at the local convenience store. And definitely not if you are the assistant district attorney of Tupelo, Mississippi.
This is the advice Hank Huckleberry Rivers would have given himself, back when he was a man who vowed to always walk on the right side of the law. The same law that had seemed sacrosanct ever since the day he and his friends watched as two men were murdered right below their tree house.
Falling in love with a dangerous criminal can have life-altering consequences, though. And when the past and the present meet head-on, Hank finds himself in more trouble than he ever bargained for. He must run to save his life, daring to find answers to the questions threatening his safety and his heart, as the killer below the tree house comes after Hank—and his pistol-wielding bank robber.
It’s a simple case of love in the first degree.
“Maybe if you’d stop letting people call you ‘Toots,’ the girls would dig you. I heard Leslie and Cassie talking about you today at lunch. They both think you were named after gas. I don’t think they even know that your real name is Hank.”
“He’s strange. He isn’t going to do anything to my bathroom, is he? I’m just going to warn you now, if he does, I’m going to knock him upside his head with my wrench.”
“Boy, you are just a teaspoon away from insane, aren’t you?”
“One more day with you feels like a life sentence because it will never be enough.”
“She’s the lewdest one – more flamboyant than the rest with all her boy toys. A real Lorena Bobbitt type, though. Lure you in with all her singin’ and then cut it right off and throw it out the window. Better yet, she loves sweet tea, that girl. She’d probably use it as a stirrer.”
I was instantly sucked into this delightfully creative mixed-genre story as the beginning voice was of Toots/Hank at age 12, and his observations and narration had me barking aloud in mirth. The humor seemed effortless and the story flowed in an addicting and absorbing manner. I adored the style, the quirky characters, the phrasing and word play. I was all in and going for broke. The tale turned darker as the basis of the mystery began, and I remained hopelessly addicted as I gasped clutched the pearls during traumatic event witnessed by Toots, that would forever change and shape their futures.
Now adults, a chance trip to the bank brought life changes to Toots – now an adult Hank, as Kismet had him falling instantly in love with one of the alluring and acrobatic lady bank robbers, who put on musical dance numbers as they wordlessly robbed their targeted banks. The cosmic meeting greatly affected them all and ignited a love affair with confounding yet potentially dire consequences. The lady bandits became a sensation with repeat performances/robberies throughout the South. They were so popular that men started hanging out in their local banks with flowers and were leaving love notes on their deposit slips.
I was still smirking and grooving on the story until about mid-way through, when became more chaotic, splintered, and confusing for me, and then it started to seem rather bizarre. I was addled, and nearing exasperation I had the thought that the story had warped like a bad acid trip, and shortly after having that thought, the characters were drugged and experienced strange hallucinations – smirk! Thankfully, the story soon coalesced and made sense again in an increasingly intriguing and gratifying manner.
I gave it 4 stars overall, but if an editor had taken a red pencil to the bewildering mid-section, this would easily have been a 5 star read.
Annie Rose Welch
When she’s not writing she enjoys dabbling in photography and finding new, inspirational music to add to her collection. She currently (still) resides in the big shake (although her southern roots are calling her home) with her husband, daughter, and their two peculiar dogs, Boudreaux and Tabasco (who, call her crazy, bark with an accent).
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