The Big Sevenby Jim Harrison
A follow-up to the New York Times bestseller The Great Leader, The Big Seven sends Harrison’s hapless Detective Sunderson up against a family of outlaws terrorizing an Upper Peninsula town.
A national bestseller from one of our most renowned and popular authors, The Big Seven finds Detective Sunderson settling into a hunting cabin in a remote area of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, where he soon realizes that his neighbors may be as dangerous as any maniac he faced in his cop days. A family of outlaws, armed to the teeth, the Ameses have local law enforcement too intimidated to take them on. Then Sunderson’s cleaning lady, a comely young Ames woman, is murdered, and black sheep brother Lemuel Ames seeks Sunderson’s advice on a crime novel he’s writing which may not be fiction.
“The pleasures of The Big Seven are found most often in Sunderson’s troubled, heavily marinated meditations . . . Such is Harrison’s gift for conveying human consciousness and all its vexing diversions and understatements and circular thoughts.” —New York Times Book Review
Sunderson must have been about ten and was burning up with fever from strep throat and still had to go to Sunday morning Lutheran service. His mother had her antennae out for malefactors and only Berenice with her leg in the cast from breaking it tobogganing had recently succeeded in avoiding church. It was dreadfully boring. He was thinking of the sausage and pancakes that he would have at home after the service and the possible likelihood of going ice fishing with Dad in the afternoon. The pastor’s resounding basso boomed out the Seven Deadly Sins: Pride, Greed, Envy, Lechery, Gluttony, Anger, and Laziness. On the way home in their old Plymouth with the bumpers and fenders rattling with rust he asked loudly what “lechery” meant and his dad said, “You’ll find out when you’re fourteen,” a typical answer wherein all life was an unearthed hostage to the future. He had a clue because the high school girls referred to the male gym teacher as a “lech” and there must be a connection. When they got home he checked the dictionary and found out that lechery meant unrestrained sexual desire. He couldn’t totally leave it alone and at breakfast asked if the sins were deadly, how soon would you die?