Category Archives: The Shameless

Review: The Shameless by Ace Atkins

Title: The Shameless by Ace Atkins
Quinn Colson Series Book Nine
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 458 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through Edelweiss


Buried secrets, dirty lies, and unbridled greed and ambition raise the stakes down South in the lauded crime series from New York Times bestselling author Ace Atkins.

Twenty years ago, Brandon Taylor was thought to be just another teen boy who ended his life too soon. That’s what almost everyone in Tibbehah County, Mississippi, said after his body and hunting rifle were found in the Big Woods. Now two New York-based reporters show up asking Sheriff Quinn Colson questions about the Taylor case. What happened to the evidence? Where are the missing files? Who really killed Brandon?

Quinn wants to help. After all, his wife Maggie was a close friend of Brandon Taylor. But Quinn was just a kid himself in 1997, and these days he’s got more on his plate than twenty-year-old suspicious death. He’s trying to shut down the criminal syndicate that’s had a stranglehold on Tibbehah for years, trafficking drugs, stolen goods, and young women through the MidSouth. Truck stop madam Fannie Hathcock runs most of that action, and has her eyes on taking over the whole show. And then there’s Senator Jimmy Vardaman, who’s cut out the old political establishment riding the Syndicate’s money and power–plus a hefty helping of racism and ignorance–straight to the governor’s office. If he manages to get elected, the Syndicate will be untouchable. Tibbehah will be lawless.

Quinn’s been fighting evil and corruption since he was a kid, at home or as a U.S. Army Ranger in Afghanistan and Iraq. This time, evil may win out.


The Shameless by Ace Atkins is an action-packed mystery set in a small Mississippi town.  Although this latest release is the ninth installment in the Quinn Colson series,  it can be read as a standalone. However, I highly recommend the previous novels as well.

Tibbehah County Sheriff Quinn Colson has been busy ferreting out crime and corruption in his small part of Mississippi for close to a decade.   A few slippery criminals disguised as upstanding citizens remain elusively out of reach despite Colson’s best efforts. With U.S. Marshall (and former Deputy Sheriff) Lillie Virgil’s arrest of Wes Taggart, Quinn hopes he will finally have the information he needs to arrest some of the worst criminals who have cleverly evaded arrest. With Wes ready to co-operate in order to reduce his sentence, will Colson finally bring down Senator Jimmy Vardaman (who is campaigning for Governor) and ultra-religious Supervisor Skinner?

Just as Quinn is in the midst of his present day investigation, the twenty-year old suicide of Brandon Taylor is now the focus of a podcast. The Taylor family has always believed Brandon was murdered but the case was quickly closed by Quinn’s uncle Hamp Beckett who was the sheriff at the time of the investigation. At the request of Brandon’s sister Shaina, Thin Air reporter Tashi Coleman and her producer Jessica Torres are in town trying to uncover the truth about Brandon’s death. The pair begin to believe that Sheriff Beckett did not investigate the case as thoroughly as he should have.  When Hamp’s former deputy  points the finger in Quinn’s direction, Tashi and Jessica begin digging into the Sheriff’s background.  Will they find any evidence to support their burgeoning theory that Beckett covered up his nephew’s involvement in Brandon’s death?

Meanwhile, the Syndicate continues its behind the scenes machinations in  Tibbehah County.  Strip club owner Fannie Hathcock fights to keep her establishment open in the face of Vardaman’s “Make Mississippi Great Again” campaign.  It is an unfair match because much plotting and scheming is going on in order to ensure Vardaman wins the Governor election.  As the truth begins to emerge about what happened to Brandon, past and present collide as Quinn uncovers stunning details surrounding the teenager’s death.

The Shameless is a spellbinding mystery that features a topical plot and intriguing investigations. Quinn remains dedicated to ridding Tibbehah County of its insidious corruption. The regular cast of characters continue to grow and evolve as they feature prominently in the various storylines. Quinn’s investigations move along at fairly fast pace until the various pieces fall into place.  Ace Atkins brings this outstanding novel to a satisfying conclusion that will leave readers breathlessly anticipating the next installment in the fantastic Quinn Colson series.

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Filed under Ace Atkins, Contemporary, GP Putnams Sons, Mystery, Quinn Colson Series, Rated B+, Review, Suspense, The Shameless