Master of the Delta (2020)

Master of the Delta Thomas H. Cook Master of the Delta In Mississippi Jack Branch returns to his father s Delta estate Great Oaks to perform an act of noblesse oblige teaching at the local high school Conducting a class on historical evil Jack is
  • Title: Master of the Delta
  • Author: Thomas H. Cook
  • ISBN: 9780151012541
  • Page: 302
  • Format: Hardcover
Master of the Delta Thomas H. Cook In 1954 Mississippi, Jack Branch returns to his father s Delta estate, Great Oaks, to perform an act of noblesse oblige teaching at the local high school Conducting a class on historical evil, Jack is shocked to discover that his unassuming student Eddie is the son of the Coed Killer, a notorious local murderer Jack feels compelled to mentor the boy, encouraging Eddie tIn 1954 Mississippi, Jack Branch returns to his father s Delta estate, Great Oaks, to perform an act of noblesse oblige teaching at the local high school Conducting a class on historical evil, Jack is shocked to discover that his unassuming student Eddie is the son of the Coed Killer, a notorious local murderer Jack feels compelled to mentor the boy, encouraging Eddie to examine his father s crime and using his own good name to open the doors that Eddie s lineage can t But when Eddie s investigation leads him to Great Oaks and to Jack s own father, Jack finds himself questioning Eddie s motives and his own.As the deadly consequences of Jack s actions fall inescapably into place, Thomas H Cook masterfully reveals the darker truths that lurk in the recesses of small town lives and in the hearts of even well intentioned men.
Master of the Delta Thomas H. Cook

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    Thomas H. Cook

One thought on “Master of the Delta

  1. Bandit

    My third read by Thomas H Cook and wow, what a terrific book Just a genuinely great novel from the first sentence to the last, this one really showcases the talent the author has for words, crafting them just so to express the deepest desires and the most secret of thoughts in such a way that the reader is taken into the mind of the characters Escapist literature of a sort, I suppose The title originally put me in mind of something military, which I was glad to know wasn t the case at all, Delta [...]

  2. Bandit

    Having read the book a while back, I sort of knew what to expect, but I managed to forget enough key plot points in almost two years to make this experience almost fresh I ve gone back to reread my review of the original and all I said still stands This is a really excellent book, exceptionally well written with terrific erudition and great humanity The audio book reader did a thoroughly competent job bringing to life the Mississippi of 1950s via its well intentioned yet conflicted narrator Very [...]

  3. Kelly

    Wow I just read the final page, and I must say, this book was extraordinarily good This one is a keeper I can t keep them all, because space just won t allow for that, but I do like to hang onto some of my favorites that I might like to reread again some day.I don t remember how I discovered this author, but he has become a top favorite of mine Master of the Delta is the third and, by far, the best of his that I ve read, following Red Leaves and Into the Web And luckily, I have nine of his pape [...]

  4. Jill

    Ughis book was really great until the greatness wore off, and the ending came Even after I rationalized all the reasons why he would ve done what he didI was still unsatisfied See my lovely bones review for my opinion on this type of book, but regardless, I couldn t put it down the whole time, and I think his theme of evil and what makes a person so was interesting, but the book is loaded with story lines that never seem complete and ambiguous references to things that in the end don t seem to m [...]

  5. Christie

    I always say Thomas H Cook is a mystery writer and he is but I think he is also so much than that Master of the Delta is my 8th outing with Cook and it didn t disappoint, even though some of the themes were familiar The novel has the propulsive energy of a mystery, a book with a thread of whodunit twined with a ribbon of is this going to end like I think it s going to end And of course nothing is ever quite what it seems But Cook operates on another level and this is where I think he excels.Mas [...]

  6. Jeanne

    My second Cook book with lots of food for thought excuse the play on words , totally different, but delivered in his same crisp prose As mentioned on page 12, on the way to failure at something great, one often succeeds at something good, works well for the plot, if not necessarily for the outcome I ve quickly become a fan of Mr Thomas H Cook.

  7. Ben Babcock

    The flashback is the weakest of all foreshadowing, and it is the device that ruined this book for me It s a shame too, because Thomas H Cook uses other foreshadowing as well hints about the deadliest sin being pride, allusions to the consequences similar characters faced in great literary works The flashbacks were confusing at best and disruptive to the pace of the story at worst I don t mind so much if the entire story is a flashback set within a frame story, or if there are flashbacks to a sin [...]

  8. Dorie

    This is the story of Jack Branch, a high school teacher currently teaching a class on evil When he finds out one of his students is the son of the locally infamous Coed Killer, he decides to take the student under his wing Jack gives an assignment to the class to write a term paper on someone who is evil, and suggests to Eddie that he write about his own father.Although the storyline was good and carried me along, I had one big problem with the ending Why did the trial cover so much of Jack s me [...]

  9. Susan

    Trust the tale, not the teller Jack Branch would have a reader believe he is a great son, teacher, mentor, lover, friend Certainly every story he tells is intended to convince a reader of this however, it just ain t so The truth is much simpler Jack is a terrible teacher what a bore with all those lecures , a dutiful if dimwitted son his father really would like to go into that nursing home , a rotten mentor, and an out and out liar Jack tells his story in a coy manner meant to suggest gravitas [...]

  10. Denise Dougherty

    Admittedly, I ve not read Cooke for some time This book, for the most part, I found filled with overblown prose and supercilious narrator But then, that could well be what Thomas H Cook was weaving in his story I listened through to the end and the last disk had much garbling that ruined the ending so much so that I ll need to find the book and read what I missed However, there were parts at the end of the story that felt familiar to me the favored stranger when Cook talked about the narrator s [...]

  11. Priscilla McFerren

    Reading Thomas H Cook invariably involves a journey to the darkness of the human soul Here we travel with Jack Branch, scion to the plantation rich in the Mississippi Delta and teacher at the local high school, to the land of evil In a special class he teaches, he explores the most notorious of evil doers and then finds himself immersed in the evil around him It is a heart breaking story resulting in wasted and reduced lives, so human a tale that one feels grief personally Cook s a master of thi [...]

  12. Sarah Pongracz

    A mystery set in the Delta of Mississippi in the mid 1950 s, Master of the Delta, is the story of a young man who returns to his family home to teach at the local high school He teaches a class on the history of evil, which brings up the murder of a young girl over a decade ago, and it turns out that one of his students is the son of the murderer, known as the Coed Killer It is the story of the relationship of fathers and sons, and of the upper class and working class in small Southern towns The [...]

  13. Kathleen Hagen

    Master of the Delta, by Thomas H Cook, a minus, Narrated by T Ryder Smith, Produced by Recorded Books, downloaded from audible.Jack Branch, the son of one of the upper class families, comes home to Mississippi to teach highschool, just as his father did before him He teaches a class in which he proposes various ideas about what constitutes evil, based mostly on literature, and the class must discuss it, plus write a paper He learns early on that one of the students in his class, who seems partic [...]

  14. Farhan

    Another powerful novel from Mr Cook that is yet another shining example of a beautiful blend of crime and literature Once again, Cook s story is told in hindsight of events that took place a long time ago Briskly paced, the complete tale emerges in flashes as the author peels away the layers and the final picture is brought in complete focus at the very end of the book Although, the main plot is not as powerful as some of his other novels, but Cook s prose is sparkling, as usual his lush and evo [...]

  15. Holly

    Thomas Cook s books always has a minimum of 2 plots going at the same time So he certainly is never a beach read kinda author Both plots hold a lot of similarities and to help one understand one of the plots it has always happened in the past which means he does a lot of remembering The story line presently being worked on reminds him of something in the past and so we, the reader, is sent back to that point in time This can be extremely confusing if you are not tuned to this type of writing I f [...]

  16. Amethystina

    The books you read by one author, the easier it is to pick up on reoccuring themes and characters Cook is definitely one of those who uses similar concepts in his works, but I can still enjoy them.In this one like so many of his book there s a troubled, misunderstood young man who is in need of either help or guidance sometimes both And, as usual, the main themes are psychology, interaction between characters, and the flawed nature of human beings Cook is very good at describing how we humans c [...]

  17. Amy Dix

    I read this in one day, on a long car ride It was hard to put down even when it got dark and I had to read by cell phone light I liked the depiction of the delta, the character of Nora Ellis, and ideas about family obligation, deceptions, and secrets I didn t like the somewhat overblown prose Her astonishingly light blue eyes shone in the afternoon light astonishingly light or astonishingly blue I hate myself for even bringing this up There are better examples , the unanswered questions, the fla [...]

  18. Jeanette

    Masterful writer, and this novel excels in his ability as a wordsmith Subtle and sublime nuance in nearly every interaction of the characters with minute detail of all the feelings of a young man and his relevant self identity in some context to that moment s nuance.It s prose that is close to poetry at points And the location feel of placement is nearly perfect.But saying all that this is the least favorite of all the Cook books I have read so far Mainly, I think, it was the subject matter and [...]

  19. Meghan

    If you love the telling of a story as much as the content, you cannot read this book soon enough I read this because I saw one of my all time favorite mystery writers, the incomparableLyndsay Faye rated this five out of five stars, and I was not disappointed It s a study of a southern town, and fate, and a singular teacher student relationship, and the things that come to people out of choice and out of the past from events far outside their control It s also a cracking good mystery, and I read [...]

  20. Aric Mitchell

    Thomas Cook is a fantastic writer, but Master of the Delta is a good example of what happens when a writer makes you wish bad things will happen to his characters Characters don t have to be noble people you instantly fall in love with They can be jerks and still make you sympathetic Problem here is that I actually wanted bad things to happen, I hated them so much, and the promise of that payoff was the only thing that kept me reading From Dirk, a troublemaking teenage scumbag, to the narrator a [...]

  21. Joanna Cabot

    This was a deeply intriguing and well written suspense novel A teacher in the American South of the 1950s is teaching a class on evil, and assigns a paper to his students to choose an evil person and write about them One of his students chooses, with his guidance, to write a paper on his own father, notorious for the long ago murder of a local coed Things go awry from thereJack is a well drawn if somewhat pompous character, and Cook is a little heavy handed with the foreshadowing A portion of th [...]

  22. Laren

    It s 1954 in Mississippi, and our protagonist is teaching a specialty class at the local high school The subject is the history of evil, so when Jack discovers that one of his students is the son of the locally notorious and now deceased Coed Killer, he feels fate dictates he should mentor the boy He encourages the boy to do a research paper about his father s crimes, but the research takes them both to places they might have preferred not to go.The book is written after something big has happen [...]

  23. Solim

    I dont think anyone tells a story better than Cook He is to the mystery genre what George R.R Martin is to the fantasy genre In other words, something new or a breath of fresh air Cook writes a great story that has a mystery aspect instead like every other author who strictly just writes a clue by clue mystery book His prose is levels above all other authors I have read, character development in this one is top notch as usual and the story sticks with you Not going to repeat the synopsis or what [...]

  24. Helen Katz

    I picked this off my shelf must have bought it at a 2nd hand book shop I don t remember What a fantastic surprise What a different and totally intriguing story Beautifully written Sometimes I would re read a passage because of the artistry of Cook s writing his imagery particularly in relation to his theme of evil I so enjoyed the structure of this novel too The way he moved from past to present and to the courtroom dialogue so smoothly I m now very eager to read of his work and I see he is a p [...]

  25. James

    While the suspense builds in this modern gothic tale of the south, there was something missing that left this reader wanting at the end of the tale It is an attractive narrative of a native returning to his home town to teach literature He tries to mentor a young boy and in doing so help the boy delve into the past crime of his father The novel then hangs on the consequences of this decision and the twists and turns, while somewhat dark and certainly unexpected, did not impress me The discoverie [...]

  26. Sarah

    Oooooo I loved this adult mystery I even had to go back and re read portions of it to see where I was misled That s my sign of a great book return return Jack Branch is a teacher at the local high school, just like his father Except his dad suffers from depression which led to the incident otherwise known as shooting himself in the head Now the dad stays in his ailing plantation home and writes a biography of Lincoln Jack is an interesting teacher his favorite class is on evil in history and lit [...]

  27. Sue

    I was so happy to learn that Thomas Cook s new mystery is every bit as good as his The Chatham School Affair 1996 which won an Edgar award several years ago This story begins as what you d think is a typical murder story A teenager, encouraged by his caring and supportive English teacher, begins to investigate the circumstances of his father s incarceration and subsequent death at the hands of a prison inmate ten years before His teacher tells the story in flashbacks, examining his own relations [...]

  28. Marsha

    Satisfying psychological thriller from Thomas Cook exploring the nature of evil in a small southern town in the 1950 s including its social and racial norms Many natives still spend their entire lives there the past is an ever present character especially the antebellum era and the Civil War.People are expected to live and die in a sort of caste system When a student decides to write about his family s past as part of a school assignment, he discovers talent above his station and a number of clu [...]

  29. Kathy

    In my desperation for a good read, I reverted to an old childhood habit and pulled a book at random from the library shelves Like one panning for gold, I unexpectedly had found the mother lode Thomas Cook is a talented writer who weaves an intense and thought provoking tale of evil, blood lines and life s paths that are shaped by circumstance of birth The story is set in a small town southern high school of the 50 s, but Cook skillfully weaves a tapestry of events that span generations It is a t [...]

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