For The Rap Sheet, editor J. Kingston Pierce chats with Art Taylor, author of On the Road with Del & Louise (Henery Press):

After years of penning crime-oriented short fiction for Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine and other publications–and collecting a shelf-full of prizes for his efforts–Taylor’s inaugural leap into novel composition has paid off rather handsomely. I wasn’t sure what I would get when I cracked open On the Road with Del & Louise (which I keep wanting to retitle On the Road with Thelma & Louise, for understandable reasons), but my expectations were ultimately exceeded. This is not a flawless work; indeed, one chapter, “The Chill,” requires your accepting some pretty dubious developments. However, the combination714iviUI1QL._UX250_ Taylor provides in these pages of convincingly eccentric characters, humorous situations, and fragile souls in need of hope–all narrated by the sassy 27-year-old Louise–both charms and disarms. I can only agree with Criminal Element’s review of this book, in which Terrie Farley Moran opines that “making the reader connect to the characters is clearly Taylor’s forte.” It’s no wonder author Taylor, who had recruited Del and Louise for an Ellery Queen short story several years ago, wanted to explore what might have happened to those lovers next–the result being On the Road.

Taylor’s short stories have won many of crime fiction’s top honors, something he seems determined not to let touch him:

Like many writers I’ve spoken with, I’m frequently plagued by self-doubt; each blank page is a daunting challenge, and the next one behind it often more so. The award recognition helps to counter (somewhat) those fears–to remind me that I have indeed managed to write something of value to others and that maybe, with work, I can do so again.

You can read the full piece here.

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