Reader’s Entertainment first meet author Robin Yocum at Ohio’s Book by the Banks Event in 2011. You can read his interview here. He was a debut author introducing the gritty world of smalltown Ohio. His first book went on to win the USA Book Award for Mystery/Suspense.
With his latest release, Robin once again heads to the rural areas of Ohio and down the road to redemption, believing in yourself and the difference once person can make in our lives.
The Essay by Robin Yocum
Jimmy Lee Hickam grew up along Red Dog Road, a dead-end strip of gravel and mud buried deep in the bowels of Appalachian Ohio. It was the poorest region of the state. The poorest county in the region. And the poorest road in the county.
To make things worse, the name Hickam was synonymous for trouble throughout Southeastern Ohio. Jimmy Lee hailed from a heathen mix of thieves, moonshiners, drunkards, and general anti-socials that for decades had clung to both the hardscrabble hills and the iron bars of every jail cell in the region. This life, Jimmy Lee believed, was his destiny.
The only two constants in Jimmy Lee’s life are football and the misery of his situation. When Jimmy Lee wins the school essay writing contest, there are no accolades. In fact, it creates nothing but resentment and doubt.
No one believes this 17-year-old, wrong-side-of-the-tracks kid is capable of creating such a paper. When the school attempts to strip him of the award, his English teacher risks her job to stand up for him, showing him a path away from the cycle of poverty and alcoholism that has defined his family for years.
Reviews for Robin’s debut novel, FAVORITE SONS
Midwest Book Review
Favorite Sons is a riveting read.
Mystery Crime Blog
Favorite Sons is a riveting novel in which friendships are pitted against truth with dead-on dialog and unforgettable characters. Yocum’s debut fiction novel is a fresh, fast-paced story that explores a sharply etched world of intrigue, friendship, politics, and, ultimately, the weight of truth.
Sisters in Crime Newsletter
The qualities that set Yocum’s work apart are his finely drawn, three-dimensional characters, skillful handling of procedural aspects, and interweaving of the recurring themes of justice, revenge, corruption and redemption.