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AGATHA AWARD WINNER, BEST FIRST NOVEL ANTHONY AWARD FINALIST, BEST FIRST NOVEL Del’s a small time crook with a moral conscience—robbing convenience stores only for tuition and academic expenses. Brash and sassy Louise goes from being a holdup victim to Del’s lover and accomplice. All they want is a fresh start, an honest life, and a chance to build a family together, but fat AGATHA AWARD WINNER, BEST FIRST NOVEL ANTHONY AWARD FINALIST, BEST FIRST NOVEL Del’s a small time crook with a moral conscience—robbing convenience stores only for tuition and academic expenses. Brash and sassy Louise goes from being a holdup victim to Del’s lover and accomplice. All they want is a fresh start, an honest life, and a chance to build a family together, but fate conspires to put ever-steeper challenges in their path—and escalating temptations, too. A real estate scam in recession-blighted Southern California. A wine heist in Napa Valley. A Vegas wedding chapel holdup. A kidnapping in an oil-rich North Dakota boomtown. Can Del and Louise stay on the right side of the law? On one another’s good side? And when they head back to Louise’s hometown in North Carolina, what new trouble will prove the biggest: Louise’s nagging mama or a hidden adversary seemingly intent on tearing the couple apart? Or could those be one and the same? From screwball comedy to domestic drama, and from caper tale to traditional whodunit, these six stories offer suspense with a side of romance—and a little something for all tastes. Part of the Henery Press Mystery Series Collection, if you like one, you'll probably like them all…


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AGATHA AWARD WINNER, BEST FIRST NOVEL ANTHONY AWARD FINALIST, BEST FIRST NOVEL Del’s a small time crook with a moral conscience—robbing convenience stores only for tuition and academic expenses. Brash and sassy Louise goes from being a holdup victim to Del’s lover and accomplice. All they want is a fresh start, an honest life, and a chance to build a family together, but fat AGATHA AWARD WINNER, BEST FIRST NOVEL ANTHONY AWARD FINALIST, BEST FIRST NOVEL Del’s a small time crook with a moral conscience—robbing convenience stores only for tuition and academic expenses. Brash and sassy Louise goes from being a holdup victim to Del’s lover and accomplice. All they want is a fresh start, an honest life, and a chance to build a family together, but fate conspires to put ever-steeper challenges in their path—and escalating temptations, too. A real estate scam in recession-blighted Southern California. A wine heist in Napa Valley. A Vegas wedding chapel holdup. A kidnapping in an oil-rich North Dakota boomtown. Can Del and Louise stay on the right side of the law? On one another’s good side? And when they head back to Louise’s hometown in North Carolina, what new trouble will prove the biggest: Louise’s nagging mama or a hidden adversary seemingly intent on tearing the couple apart? Or could those be one and the same? From screwball comedy to domestic drama, and from caper tale to traditional whodunit, these six stories offer suspense with a side of romance—and a little something for all tastes. Part of the Henery Press Mystery Series Collection, if you like one, you'll probably like them all…

30 review for On the Road with Del and Louise: A Novel in Stories

  1. 4 out of 5

    Col

    Synopsis/blurb ... Del's a small time crook with a moral conscience-robbing convenience stores only for tuition and academic expenses. Brash and sassy Louise goes from being a holdup victim to Del's lover and accomplice. All they want is a fresh start, an honest life, and a chance to build a family together, but fate conspires to put ever-steeper challenges in their path-and escalating temptations, too. A real estate scam in recession-blighted Southern California. A wine heist in Napa Valley. A V Synopsis/blurb ... Del's a small time crook with a moral conscience-robbing convenience stores only for tuition and academic expenses. Brash and sassy Louise goes from being a holdup victim to Del's lover and accomplice. All they want is a fresh start, an honest life, and a chance to build a family together, but fate conspires to put ever-steeper challenges in their path-and escalating temptations, too. A real estate scam in recession-blighted Southern California. A wine heist in Napa Valley. A Vegas wedding chapel holdup. A kidnapping in an oil-rich North Dakota boomtown. Can Del and Louise stay on the right side of the law? On one another's good side? And when they head back to Louise's hometown in North Carolina, what new trouble will prove the biggest: Louise's nagging mama or a hidden adversary seemingly intent on tearing the couple apart? Or could those be one and the same? From screwball comedy to domestic drama, and from caper tale to traditional whodunit, these six stories offer suspense with a side of romance-and a little something for all tastes. Related subjects include: cozy mysteries, women sleuths, mystery novellas, mystery novella series, short story collections, whodunnit short stories, novel in stories, book club recommendations, Southern living, Southern humor, murder mystery books. ---- My take ... A novel that I fancied on Net Galley about six years ago and only just got around to reading. Worth the wait? I think so. The novel comprises of six stories and they do link well together and form a cohesive narrative for Del & Louise's evolving relationship from stick up artist and victim to loving couple tying the knot and solving the mystery of which so and so is trying to ruin their big day by stealing their presents and souring the occasion. Along the way there are family issues to resolve. Del's sister gets them involved in a real estate scam with Del as the intended patsy. You can't beat a bit of fraternal love. At the other end of their journey, Louise's mother tries just about everything to throw a spanner into the works and separate the couple. There is a lot of humour present in her machinations and some of the exchanges between her and Del are pretty funny. Mum always knows best, unless of course she doesn't. The couple's relationship endures trust issues and arguments. Pretty much the same for all couples on a journey I suppose. Maybe the ones I know weren't also caught up in Vegas hold-ups, small appliance fencing deals and wine festival robberies. Fun was had. 4 from 5 Read - July, 2021 Published - 2015 Page count - 286 Source - review copy Net Galley Format - Kindle http://col2910.blogspot.com/2021/07/a...

  2. 5 out of 5

    Andrea Stoeckel

    [I received this book free from the publisher through NetGalley. I thank them for their generousity. In exchange, I was simply asked to write an honest review, and post it. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising] Louise, a young cashier at the local 7-11, meets Art in the strangest way. He robbed the store and then called her and ask [I received this book free from the publisher through NetGalley. I thank them for their generousity. In exchange, I was simply asked to write an honest review, and post it. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising] Louise, a young cashier at the local 7-11, meets Art in the strangest way. He robbed the store and then called her and asked her out!? And a cross country trip full of quirky and missed understandings as diagramed in a collection of short stories have you wondering just what its like to live by the seat of your pants instead of the plans you may have dreamed of since you were small. From a sock monkey to a purple teddy bear to a reluctant Mother-in- Law, Delwood and Louise grow up, and expand their understanding of what it means to "live in the moment" because, as Louise keeps saying : " There’s this saying: Love isn’t two people gazing into one another’s eyes, it’s two people looking together in the same direction." I've had this ARC a while, but wasn't so sure I'd even read it. Short stories are not a big draw for me. What I found was a cross between On the Road, T.C. Boyle and Thelma and Louise, these stories are fascinating as well as gawker worthy as you simply can't believe they are really happening. You don't want to be, but Taylor draws you in a little at a time, as you begin to start looking in the exact same direction as his characters are. And for that one brief moment, you see the love.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jenna

    There are two facts I can write without hesitation, as I think about this book. First, I've never been much of a fan of short stories. However, that fact leads me to the second: I liked this book. It was different for me, and I say that in a positive way. I was happy and engaged while reading, and eager to get back to the stories when I had to stop. On the Road with Del and Louise steps outside of the bounds of just one genre, in my mind. There are elements of mystery and romance and travel and d There are two facts I can write without hesitation, as I think about this book. First, I've never been much of a fan of short stories. However, that fact leads me to the second: I liked this book. It was different for me, and I say that in a positive way. I was happy and engaged while reading, and eager to get back to the stories when I had to stop. On the Road with Del and Louise steps outside of the bounds of just one genre, in my mind. There are elements of mystery and romance and travel and drama in each of the stories included. I struggle a little with my thoughts, I think, because I'm not really sure if I like Del or Louise. Neither of them endeared themselves to me; they felt like characters throughout, whereas, in my favorite reads, characters often feel like dear friends. That said, both Del and Louise are interesting. Their motivations kept me curious, which propelled my reading. Of all the stories, the one entitled "The Chill" was my favorite. This was a story that not only tapped into my imagination, but that touched my heart and gave me a look into Louise's heart, too. I thought this was the most emotionally moving of the collection, and it is a story that stays with me. On the Road with Del and Louise has been on my to read list for quite a while. Now, having finally read it, I'm glad I did.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Caroline Bock

    A novel-in-stories, a rollicking trip that takes you on the road with the down-and-out Del and Louise, with enough twists and turns through New Mexico, California, North Dakota, and North Carolina to keep the story humming and you wondering what's next for this couple. I may have wanted it to do a bit more, cut more to the bone. There's almost a genteel niceness to the characters, a Southern politeness, a desire transform, to have second acts, and maybe I'm just too dark and pessimistic at the m A novel-in-stories, a rollicking trip that takes you on the road with the down-and-out Del and Louise, with enough twists and turns through New Mexico, California, North Dakota, and North Carolina to keep the story humming and you wondering what's next for this couple. I may have wanted it to do a bit more, cut more to the bone. There's almost a genteel niceness to the characters, a Southern politeness, a desire transform, to have second acts, and maybe I'm just too dark and pessimistic at the moment to appreciate it. All this said, I particularly liked the last story -- if there's hope for Del and Louise -- there's hope for us all in 21st century America. --Caroline

  5. 4 out of 5

    Mark Baker

    This book is a collection of six stories starring Del and Louise, a couple constantly on the move. Some of it is trying to outrun crime, and some of it is trying to start a life together. We meet them in New Mexico as Del is planning on last robbery to set them up in a life on the right side of the law. Will it work? If not, will they be able to survive without turning back to crime? I must admit I had a hard time getting past the fact that this duo are criminals, but as they grew as characters, This book is a collection of six stories starring Del and Louise, a couple constantly on the move. Some of it is trying to outrun crime, and some of it is trying to start a life together. We meet them in New Mexico as Del is planning on last robbery to set them up in a life on the right side of the law. Will it work? If not, will they be able to survive without turning back to crime? I must admit I had a hard time getting past the fact that this duo are criminals, but as they grew as characters, I got caught up in their story. They are really the only characters who are in the entire book, but they can pull it off well. The various capers, schemes, and plots they find themselves in are all different, keeping us from getting bored while exploring the characters. Read my full review at Carstairs Considers.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Debbi Mack

    A highly-original short story collection. The characters come alive as Louise tells the story of her life with Del (short for Delwood) on the road. One of the most unique concepts for a novel I've seen recently. I highly recommend this book, especially if you're a fan of movies like Raising Arizona! I can easily picture Nick Cage playing Del. :) A highly-original short story collection. The characters come alive as Louise tells the story of her life with Del (short for Delwood) on the road. One of the most unique concepts for a novel I've seen recently. I highly recommend this book, especially if you're a fan of movies like Raising Arizona! I can easily picture Nick Cage playing Del. :)

  7. 4 out of 5

    Christopher Irvin

    First off - I'm a sucker for a novel in stories, so Art Taylor's debut is already sitting well with me. But I've also been fortunate to stumble into a string of books with fantastic voice over the past several weeks, and On the Road with Del & Louise is right at the top. Louise is a wonderful character, and the way Taylor plays with the setting and tone of each story works well to show off both his range and Louise's growth as she and Del struggle through their adventure. The back cover copy per First off - I'm a sucker for a novel in stories, so Art Taylor's debut is already sitting well with me. But I've also been fortunate to stumble into a string of books with fantastic voice over the past several weeks, and On the Road with Del & Louise is right at the top. Louise is a wonderful character, and the way Taylor plays with the setting and tone of each story works well to show off both his range and Louise's growth as she and Del struggle through their adventure. The back cover copy perfectly hints at what you'll find inside: "From screwball comedy to domestic drama, and from caper tale to traditional whodunit, these six stories offer suspense with a side of romance - and a little something for all tastes." While the above doesn't fit with my usual reading habits (generally fiction on the darker side), I was hooked from the first (Rearview Mirror) - which I think feels the most like a "crime" tale, and while the rest may be somewhat lighter in tone, they each play off one another, resulting in some good laughs and utterly heart breaking moments. Highly recommended.

  8. 4 out of 5

    David

    On the Road with Del and Louise is a funny, insightful novel through stories that shows the development of Del and Louise from robber and victim to something much more. We watch as they struggle to build a relationship, then a shared vision, and finally a trust that will carry them through a lifetime, all the while just trying to stay one step ahead of the law. Del, the itinerant small-time criminal, has visions of the big time. Louise is a dreamer of a different kind, but sees through the holes On the Road with Del and Louise is a funny, insightful novel through stories that shows the development of Del and Louise from robber and victim to something much more. We watch as they struggle to build a relationship, then a shared vision, and finally a trust that will carry them through a lifetime, all the while just trying to stay one step ahead of the law. Del, the itinerant small-time criminal, has visions of the big time. Louise is a dreamer of a different kind, but sees through the holes of Del's ski mask, a kindness and unity of spirit with her own. She tells him she likes his voice and his pretty eyes and gives him her phone number, because it isn't every day you're robbed by a man who says he's doing it to cover tuition for college. When Del calls Louise a few days later, she thinks that takes a real man, and a man seeking an education. She knows on the road, they're going places.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Chaitra

    It's probably what happens when I fail to see what I'm signing up for - an extreme form of avoiding spoilers - but I wasn't expecting a novel in stories. Well, it is. The vignettes tell the story of a couple, Del and Louise, who, despite a whole lot of effort, end up on the other side of the law more often than not. And it is charming. I loved the two of them, and was rooting for them, even in the hard to accept chapter, The Chill. They make it worthwhile, because they have their own code of mor It's probably what happens when I fail to see what I'm signing up for - an extreme form of avoiding spoilers - but I wasn't expecting a novel in stories. Well, it is. The vignettes tell the story of a couple, Del and Louise, who, despite a whole lot of effort, end up on the other side of the law more often than not. And it is charming. I loved the two of them, and was rooting for them, even in the hard to accept chapter, The Chill. They make it worthwhile, because they have their own code of morality (and since I'm not the one being subject to whatever it is they're perpetrating). The ending leaves it open for a sequel (or several), and here's hoping there's something to that. Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with a copy of this book for review.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Judy

    Interesting characters. I didn't want to like them, but I just couldn't help myself. I liked the way the author used a series of stories, each set in a different town, to tell Del and Louise's story. Interesting characters. I didn't want to like them, but I just couldn't help myself. I liked the way the author used a series of stories, each set in a different town, to tell Del and Louise's story.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Kathy

    The stories are fine, and this is, as billed, a novel in stories, but since it is also being touted as a mystery novel, and indeed is a finalist for a best first mystery novel Agatha award, I could not help but be disappointed. By my definition of the genre, this is not a mystery.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Eli

    (I received this book through this site's giveaway program.) I'd call this a 3.5/5 (or 7/10), but this site doesn't do half-stars, so I'm gonna round down. There are just a few easily editable flaws in the prose that, if fixed, would've made this a 4/5 in my book, is most of it. Otherwise, I mostly enjoyed reading this book! Taylor uses mystery/crime tropes in order to tell regular human stories, and that's a combination that I hadn't seen before. I'd say that the "regular human stories" part is a (I received this book through this site's giveaway program.) I'd call this a 3.5/5 (or 7/10), but this site doesn't do half-stars, so I'm gonna round down. There are just a few easily editable flaws in the prose that, if fixed, would've made this a 4/5 in my book, is most of it. Otherwise, I mostly enjoyed reading this book! Taylor uses mystery/crime tropes in order to tell regular human stories, and that's a combination that I hadn't seen before. I'd say that the "regular human stories" part is a greater strength of the book than the "mystery/crime" part, but for me that's okay. Taylor seems to have a good grasp of human emotion and a good ability to write about it, so I'm glad that he played to his strengths. In my opinion, this book did a pretty good job of walking the line between being sappy and being dark and sad just for the sake of being dark and sad: there's enough drama that the characters' happiness feels real and meaningful, but there's not so much drama that the book just feels like a gratuitous slog. Honestly, it was kinda refreshing. As the title suggests, the plot proceeds one story at a time, which each chapter having its own buildup, climax, and denouement. Some of those stories have more satisfying resolutions than others, but by and large the plots move along nicely. Taylor's prose is also very warm and believable. As I've already said, there are some minor flaws (e.g. the clarity of Del's character wavers at times), so I kinda bobbed in and out of the text at times, but overall it's an enjoyable read. So if you're a fan of the crime or mystery genres, I'd say give this one a look. It's not necessarily a work of mind-boggling genius or anything like that, but it should give you a new spin on some familiar ideas and traditions.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Edythe Hamilton

    On the Road with Del & Louise is the story of a woman while employed at a 7-11 convenience store robbed by the man whom she eventually falls in love and alongside Del begins to lead a life of crime. Their romance and Del’s criminal activities lead to living life on the lam from New Mexico to California, and from North Carolina to Las Vegas to North Dakota. Del & Louise’s adventurous travels include mayhem in the world of real estate, sophisticated art galleries, wine tasting in Napa Valley to cha On the Road with Del & Louise is the story of a woman while employed at a 7-11 convenience store robbed by the man whom she eventually falls in love and alongside Del begins to lead a life of crime. Their romance and Del’s criminal activities lead to living life on the lam from New Mexico to California, and from North Carolina to Las Vegas to North Dakota. Del & Louise’s adventurous travels include mayhem in the world of real estate, sophisticated art galleries, wine tasting in Napa Valley to changing their identities by adopting the first names of Bonnie and Clyde. The story unfolds through the eyes of Louise (Bonnie) as she occasionally contemplates whether to stay with Del (Clyde) in continuing this lifestyle. I recommend to readers of drama, romance, and Bonnie and Clyde fans for an adventure from state to state. I received this book from Henery Press through the Net Galley Reviewer Program in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission guidelines.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen Moriarty

    It is not often you have an opportunity to spend an afternoon at you local library discussing "How to Run a Successful Book Club" and meet not only a George Mason English Professor but also the author of this delightful book. In the publishing world of "formula" mystery novels, Art Taylor's writing is a breath of fresh air. If this book where a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc, the label would read "light with a splash of witty banter, humorous mis-adventures, and a hint of human drama." Like all good It is not often you have an opportunity to spend an afternoon at you local library discussing "How to Run a Successful Book Club" and meet not only a George Mason English Professor but also the author of this delightful book. In the publishing world of "formula" mystery novels, Art Taylor's writing is a breath of fresh air. If this book where a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc, the label would read "light with a splash of witty banter, humorous mis-adventures, and a hint of human drama." Like all good mysteries...it's a page-turner but for purely delightful reasons. This book reminds me why I fell in love with books and reading. If you liked Dashiell Hammett's "The Thin Man" movies with the escapades of Nick & Nora or the TV series "Moonlighting" (The Blue Moon Detective Agency with Maddie & David), you will undoubtly enjoy Art Taylor's first novel.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Gayle B

    I enjoyed this book and the characters. This book asks the question; can you root for a protagonist that is on the other side of the law? Yep Del did all kinds of small crimes. But we got to read his thought process and he really believed it was o.k., that he had good reasons for what he did. Louise actually tries to keep Del under wraps, de-escalate situations when needed. Except when she finds herself shoplifting, which leads to something a bit more serious. They are both so misguided and warp I enjoyed this book and the characters. This book asks the question; can you root for a protagonist that is on the other side of the law? Yep Del did all kinds of small crimes. But we got to read his thought process and he really believed it was o.k., that he had good reasons for what he did. Louise actually tries to keep Del under wraps, de-escalate situations when needed. Except when she finds herself shoplifting, which leads to something a bit more serious. They are both so misguided and warped in their thinking, and don't want to hurt anyone that I had to like them. I had to laugh at some of the things they said and did. Now in real life, I probably wouldn't hang out with them.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Leslie Karst

    I loved spending time with Del and Louise, as they made their way around the country getting themselves involved in a variety of capers, mysteries, and other shenanigans. If you’re looking for a modern day road trip read, this “novel in stories,” as it’s billed, will be right up your alley—or highway, to be more exact. An entertaining and smart page-turner.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Rob Saunders

    A male author, a female protagonist, a male reader (me). There's that. Seems to be a correct portrayal of female sensibilities. The male characters were in most regards stereotyped, sadly forgettable. Tight prose but predictable plots. Less intrigue and depth than I had hoped. More lark than dark. More The Sting (1973) than The Grifters (1990). A male author, a female protagonist, a male reader (me). There's that. Seems to be a correct portrayal of female sensibilities. The male characters were in most regards stereotyped, sadly forgettable. Tight prose but predictable plots. Less intrigue and depth than I had hoped. More lark than dark. More The Sting (1973) than The Grifters (1990).

  18. 4 out of 5

    Homerun2

    3.75 Quirky story of a couple living an edgy life: not quite legal, not quite financially secure, not quite married. Del and Louise meet when he robs the convenience store where she works. They set off on a series of misadventures, but their story has humor, grit and honesty. An entertaining and fresh read.

  19. 4 out of 5

    LynDee

    Taylor's debut expertly weaves a series of what could be standalone stories into a wonderful mystery novel. Clean, gorgeous writing and walk-off-the-page characters make this a book no one should miss. Taylor's debut expertly weaves a series of what could be standalone stories into a wonderful mystery novel. Clean, gorgeous writing and walk-off-the-page characters make this a book no one should miss.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Marylu Sanok

    Didn't care much for the story. This was a book club choice. The characters were not interesting at all and while there were a few interesting things, I would not recommend this book. Didn't care much for the story. This was a book club choice. The characters were not interesting at all and while there were a few interesting things, I would not recommend this book.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Victoria

    Is it OK to say a book by a male author is “charming”? Regardless of possible gender-bias, this book is. Del and Louise are a couple brought together by crime. They met when Del was robbing the 7-11 in Eagle Nest, New Mexico, where Louise worked. They stay together during a succession of American-style self-reinventions aimed at getting a “fresh start,” reinventions that invariably wind up in one shady enterprise or another, and they ultimately . . . well, read the book and find out. Taylor is an Is it OK to say a book by a male author is “charming”? Regardless of possible gender-bias, this book is. Del and Louise are a couple brought together by crime. They met when Del was robbing the 7-11 in Eagle Nest, New Mexico, where Louise worked. They stay together during a succession of American-style self-reinventions aimed at getting a “fresh start,” reinventions that invariably wind up in one shady enterprise or another, and they ultimately . . . well, read the book and find out. Taylor is an award-winning short story writer, and the individual chapters of this picaresque could stand alone. In fact, the first two chapters have done so, in past issues of Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, where I first read and admired his work. His stories have won numerous Derringer, Agatha, and Macavity awards and are frequently anthologized. What’s especially fun about On the Road is how well Taylor develops the two principal characters. Del wants to do right, to get straight, but it just isn’t happening, and Louise isn’t above a little larceny herself, if it promotes the couple’s welfare. Del’s intelligence is complemented by Louise’s cleverness in a pinch, and Del’s planning skills by Louise’s gut instincts. Together, they are a “doing the best they can” pair and their story is filled with humor and insight into human failings. The people they meet along the way have plenty of those, as they do themselves. Their adventures are recounted by Louise in a straightforward and wry narrative voice that includes plenty of insight into her own shortcomings. Although the text is relatively unembellished, Taylor allows himself some spot-on literary flourishes (for instance, when he describes an early morning near Taos as “the sun creeping up, the boil not yet on the day”) and comic bits: “If that first winery we went to was upper crust, the bar in Napa was sure the bottom of the pie.” Their travels take them from New Mexico to Victorville and Napa Valley, California, then to a comically disastrous scene in a Las Vegas wedding chapel (do I even need to say “cheesy”?). A stint in the North Dakota oil fields proves financially rewarding and emotionally bankrupting. There, Louise learns anew that “The reasons you do things don’t always make up for the doing of them.” Finally they reach North Carolina, Louise’s home state, and her acerbic mother Cora. Her relentless belittling and undermining of Del are priceless, as if all the wicked thrusts and jabs of a lifetime must be desperately delivered in one short visit. Taylor has created an enjoyable tale and some nerve-wracking adventures without the need for a gruesome body count or far-fetched end-of-the-word-as-we-know-it scenarios. Because the story is so grounded in imperfect humanity and told so convincingly, we share Del and Louise’s bumpy ride, rooting for them every mile of the way. While their lives will never be trouble-free, the reader senses they will always be good.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Wendy

    Review copy provided by publisher for review. When I first began reading On the Road with Del and Louise, I expected a lighthearted and funny collection of short stories, only loosely tied together. Art Taylor's novel is so much more than that. It's the story of a couple, Del and Louise, who meet, fall in love, face difficult times and must make hard decisions. There is quite a bit of humor mixed in with many more thoughtful moments. I genuinely loved Taylor's writing style. He makes it seem so e Review copy provided by publisher for review. When I first began reading On the Road with Del and Louise, I expected a lighthearted and funny collection of short stories, only loosely tied together. Art Taylor's novel is so much more than that. It's the story of a couple, Del and Louise, who meet, fall in love, face difficult times and must make hard decisions. There is quite a bit of humor mixed in with many more thoughtful moments. I genuinely loved Taylor's writing style. He makes it seem so effortless, drawing out the lives of these two characters on the page, bringing them to life. At the beginning of the novel, I wasn't quite sure I would like Del and Louise: Del robbing a convenience store and Louise handing him her number in the middle of the hold up. And yet, the more the reader gets to know the two, the easier it is to not only see the good in them, but come to love their flaws as well. Del seems to the be the most sensible of the two, while Louise is the dreamer. They are just ordinary people, not particularly the brightest, trying to make their way in the world. The various stories that make up this novel show the characters at different points in their life. We see them grow as they attempt to make a better life for themselves. They are met with many disappointments along the way. From their first meeting, to life on the road, a career in real estate to wine tasting, and reconnecting with family to settling down on their own, I had a great time traveling cross the country, getting caught up in Del and Louise's story. The stories flow well into each other, and the book really does read like a novel, although each of the stories can be read individually. My favorite stories was perhaps the most emotional (to me)--as Del and Louise seem to finally be really settling down. It turns out to be an extremely difficult time for both Del and Louise, one that had me in tears. But then, I especially loved the final story of the collection (which I won't go into detail about because I wouldn't want to spoil it for you), which finds the characters in Louise's hometown trying to solve a mystery. It was both funny and sentimental. It was the perfect ending for this particular book. I already miss Del and Louise wish the book hadn't had to end. On the Road with Del and Louise turned out to be quite a gem, and I am so glad I took a chance on it. I look forward to exploring more of Art Taylor's writing.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Lynn Farris

    Art Taylor is one of my favorite short story writers. An Associate Professor of English at George Mason University, he has won two Agatha Awards, a Macavity Award, and three consecutive Derringer Awards for his short fiction. Art has twice been named a finalist for the Anthony Award. So I was eager to read his first full length mystery novel, “On the Road with Del & Louise.” It is a novel in stories. The stories center on Del, a small time crook, who robs to pay his tuition and Louise, Del’s one Art Taylor is one of my favorite short story writers. An Associate Professor of English at George Mason University, he has won two Agatha Awards, a Macavity Award, and three consecutive Derringer Awards for his short fiction. Art has twice been named a finalist for the Anthony Award. So I was eager to read his first full length mystery novel, “On the Road with Del & Louise.” It is a novel in stories. The stories center on Del, a small time crook, who robs to pay his tuition and Louise, Del’s one time hold-up victim, turned lover and accomplice. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but the concept intrigued me. The book is actually composed of six short stories which follow the two main characters, from the beginning of their relationship throughout the country. It reads like a novel. Louise and Del are involved in a real estate scam in southern California, a wine heist in Napa Valley, a Vegas wedding chapel holdup and a kidnapping in North Dakota. When they return home to North Carolina, to get married, challenging situations arise and threaten to derail the wedding. The stories offer a reader a taste of various mystery styles: screwball comedy, domestic drama, a caper tale and a traditional mystery. The variation in style is remarkable considering that characters are believable throughout and demonstrate the author’s versatility as a writer. Going through this period of their life they experience betrayal, comedy, sadness and love. “On the Road with Del & Louise” offers lots of philosophical questions to debate. Louisa’s mother, Cora, has a deep distrust of men, given her own situation and her voice stays in Louisa’s head even when her mother is nowhere close. She often makes a lot of sense “Sometimes people are just too far apart in their wants – that’s what Mama told me. Sometimes things just don’t work out.” Del has his own philosophy of life and crime. Along the way we are treated to other philosophies with people they encounter. For the rest of the review, see http://www.examiner.com/article/read-...

  24. 4 out of 5

    Robyn Madar

    Things I liked: genre-bending (I didn't realize it was a mystery/crime novel-in-stories until later than I care to confirm), and thought a couple of the stories were really standout. Liked the changes in tone/setting throughout. Things I wanted: wanted the characters to be developed more (though perhaps a limitation of this genre). Also didn't like being blindsided by a very unsettling story in the midst of lighter, more caper-ish ones. Overall liked, and would recommend. Things I liked: genre-bending (I didn't realize it was a mystery/crime novel-in-stories until later than I care to confirm), and thought a couple of the stories were really standout. Liked the changes in tone/setting throughout. Things I wanted: wanted the characters to be developed more (though perhaps a limitation of this genre). Also didn't like being blindsided by a very unsettling story in the midst of lighter, more caper-ish ones. Overall liked, and would recommend.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Nash Norden

    I'm not sure what to expect when I first read this book, but, the title and the cover look fun, and I decided to give it a try. Del and Louise met when Del robbed the convenience store where Louise was working at, and he asked her out. All they wanted was a fresh start and an honest life. That was when their journey began. But it wasn't easy. Trouble seemed to follow them wherever they go, and forcing them to break the law again. I really like how the story begins. The author's writing was easy t I'm not sure what to expect when I first read this book, but, the title and the cover look fun, and I decided to give it a try. Del and Louise met when Del robbed the convenience store where Louise was working at, and he asked her out. All they wanted was a fresh start and an honest life. That was when their journey began. But it wasn't easy. Trouble seemed to follow them wherever they go, and forcing them to break the law again. I really like how the story begins. The author's writing was easy to read. The characters were fun and interesting. I love how Del and Louise met at the convenience store, and I wanted to read and find out what will happen to Del and Louise. But, after a while, I got bored. This is probably because I have a short attention span, and the chapters (or stories) were a bit too long. I might enjoy the story a bit more if it weren't for the long chapters. Nevertheless, I do enjoy the Del and Louise's journey in the story. I love the romance between them. They may not have that fairytale romance, but, they always have each other. And I like that a lot about them. I wanted to cheer for them no matter what they're going through. There were some laugh-out-loud moments, as well as moments that made me teary. If you're a fan of mystery, and you don't mind reading books with long chapter, you will definitely love On the Road with Del and Louise. I received a copy of this book from NetGalley.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Eleanor Jones

    What an absolutely beautifully written book. I was alternately charmed, sad, gleeful, terrified, and hopeful. I suppose that means I bought into the viewpoint of Louise, one of the main characters. To her mind, her love, Del, never gets it--except he ultimately does get it, every time. Thus lies a great deal of the charm. One thing for sure, the author gets it. Not just an adventure book but a love story and a mystery and a travel book all twisted into a remarkable story told in a wonderful arra What an absolutely beautifully written book. I was alternately charmed, sad, gleeful, terrified, and hopeful. I suppose that means I bought into the viewpoint of Louise, one of the main characters. To her mind, her love, Del, never gets it--except he ultimately does get it, every time. Thus lies a great deal of the charm. One thing for sure, the author gets it. Not just an adventure book but a love story and a mystery and a travel book all twisted into a remarkable story told in a wonderful arrangement of words. There's a reason this author is nominated for, and has won, several national awards for his short-story and novel writing. In a well crafted short story, every word has its place and every paragraph matters. This holds true throughout the entire book. A wonderful and hilarious beginning, a perfect ending, and the middle is not too darn bad either. In fact, the story had me from beginning to end. So many small things, I read it carefully so as not to miss the next laugh-out-loud or aha! or yeah-Louise-I-get-that moment. You can read it as a series of standalone shorts or as a novel. So fun. I have not read a book in ages that I've enjoyed this much. It doesn't matter if you're someone who admires good writing. The fine storytelling stands on its own. I'd read more with these characters any time. Absolutely pick up a copy and enjoy, enjoy, enjoy.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Betty

    Short stories held together by the MCs Del and Louise. Del robs convenience stores to get tuition fees. Louise is a clerk at one he robs and becomes his partner. Travel with them as they search for the right place to start a new beginning. Our first stop is southern California where Del's sister betrayed them. After tricking her they head for the Napa valley. There events happened that they moved Las Vegas to be married. A holdup at the wedding chapel prevents the marriage. Leaving there we find Short stories held together by the MCs Del and Louise. Del robs convenience stores to get tuition fees. Louise is a clerk at one he robs and becomes his partner. Travel with them as they search for the right place to start a new beginning. Our first stop is southern California where Del's sister betrayed them. After tricking her they head for the Napa valley. There events happened that they moved Las Vegas to be married. A holdup at the wedding chapel prevents the marriage. Leaving there we find them in North Dakota where Del finds work in the oil fields. More difficulties occur and they head for Louise home to be married. This booik had many surprises but I found it difficult to understand the characters. Disclosure: I received a free copy from HENERY PRESS through Netgalley for an honest review. I would like to thank them for the opportunity to read and review this book. The opinions are mine own.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Edythe Hamilton

    On the Road with Del & Louise is the story of a woman while employed at a 7-11 convenience store robbed by the man whom she eventually falls in love and alongside Del begins to lead a life of crime. Their romance and Del’s criminal activities lead to living life on the lam from New Mexico to California, and from North Carolina to Las Vegas to North Dakota. Del & Louise’s adventurous travels include mayhem in the world of real estate, sophisticated art galleries, wine tasting in Napa Valley to ch On the Road with Del & Louise is the story of a woman while employed at a 7-11 convenience store robbed by the man whom she eventually falls in love and alongside Del begins to lead a life of crime. Their romance and Del’s criminal activities lead to living life on the lam from New Mexico to California, and from North Carolina to Las Vegas to North Dakota. Del & Louise’s adventurous travels include mayhem in the world of real estate, sophisticated art galleries, wine tasting in Napa Valley to changing their identities by adopting the first names of Bonnie and Clyde. The story unfolds through the eyes of Louise (Bonnie) as she occasionally contemplates whether to stay with Del (Clyde) in continuing this lifestyle. I recommend to readers of drama, romance, and Bonnie and Clyde fans for an adventure from state to state. I received this book from Henery Press through the Net Galley Reviewer Program in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission guidelines.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Peter Ackerman

    I wanted to really like "On the Road With Del & Louise" as it really had a snappy beginning. Great dialogue and a pacing that drew me right into the story, into the life of the characters and though they are skirting the law, I enjoyed the ride with them. Alas, that did not last long, and when we get passed the exciting start of this work, it then becomes a slow where it does not have to be, plodding, bore. This is probably due to the author trying to make this a series of short stories - some a I wanted to really like "On the Road With Del & Louise" as it really had a snappy beginning. Great dialogue and a pacing that drew me right into the story, into the life of the characters and though they are skirting the law, I enjoyed the ride with them. Alas, that did not last long, and when we get passed the exciting start of this work, it then becomes a slow where it does not have to be, plodding, bore. This is probably due to the author trying to make this a series of short stories - some are hit, some are miss. Mostly, I lost interest in the characters, and did not care who did what to whom nor where they went. That is my own long winded way of saying this did not keep my interest.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Pamela

    On the Road... is a well written, professionally edited, and unique novel. Unique because it is a series of short stories that when read in sequence form a full length novel. Del robs the store where Louise is working and she is intrigued by his eyes (he is wearing a ski mask). He is working his way through college by being a robber. When he graduates they take off on a road trip to start new lives, hopefully crime free lives. But the straight and narrow is tough on a young couple with very littl On the Road... is a well written, professionally edited, and unique novel. Unique because it is a series of short stories that when read in sequence form a full length novel. Del robs the store where Louise is working and she is intrigued by his eyes (he is wearing a ski mask). He is working his way through college by being a robber. When he graduates they take off on a road trip to start new lives, hopefully crime free lives. But the straight and narrow is tough on a young couple with very little life experience. This is a fascinating read. My only problem was with Louise; she wasn't the brightest woman, even though she has a good heart. On the Road With Del and Louise ends with a satisfying HFN. ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley.

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