this dark road to mercy
by wiley cash
(Wm Morrow 2014)
Imagine that a minor league baseball player is absorbed in trying to make it in that world. He ignores a wife and infant children. As his baseball career fades resulting from bad decisions, he becomes immersed in his own mess of a life.
The childrens’ mother dies and they become wards of the state. The father renounced all his rights years earlier. He shows up at the home where they exist. The older daughter rebuffs his effort to take them away. She wants nothing to do with him. The younger sister needs someone.
Father takes them away. He worked for a contractor, discovering funds buried behind a wall, somehow obtained from an armored car theft. An enforcer of the gangster is after him. The public guardian of the children is also after them.
The story is told from the standpoints of older daughter Easter, the enforcer, and the guardian, struggling with failings in his own life as a detective and father.
this dark road to mercy is an endearing story. Written in a spare style, reminiscent of Elmore Leonard, Wiley Cash spins an excellent story. It takes a bit to get into the swing of the respective narrators, but the charming story evolves with great interest. Search of children for love and safety, a failed father for meaning, a foster parent wanting to do right, and an enforcer seeking money for violence come together to make an endearing, page-turning story.
Good and evil collide here in a thoroughly gripping story. There is hope for all of us.