It was 1970 when 13-year-old runaway Kit Walker was abducted by Manny Romero, a smooth-talking, low-level criminal, who first coddled her and then groomed her into his partner-in-crime. Before long, Kit and Manny were infamous for their string of gas station robberies throughout Texas, making a name for themselves as the Texaco Twosome. Fourteen years later, Kit has scraped together a life for herself and her daughter amongst the pecan trees and muddy creeks of the town of Pecan Hollow, far from Manny. But when he shows up at her doorstep a new man, fresh out of prison, Kit's profound and twisted attachment to him compels her to let him in. Immediately, Kit is forced to reckon with the shadows of her past, and her community is sent into a tailspin.
Caroline Frost's impressive debut novel, Shadows of Pecan Hollow, provides a comprehensive look at a woman who...is taken in by a charming criminal until she finds the courage to break away ... Although the plot momentarily stalls in the novel's midsection, Frost's skill at sculpting a character both sympathetic and prickly shines in Shadows of Pecan Hollow.
Heart-rending ... Shadows of Pecan Hollow will be heartbreaking for readers wiser and more experienced than young Kit, as they’ll be able to see Manny’s manipulation and violence for what it really is: abuse ... Impressive.
Captivating if messy ... The author does a bang-up job fleshing out Kit’s young life, creating the perfect storm of circumstances...for her to trust a stranger who treats her with a kindness she’s never known. Once Manny comes back, however, the story goes a bit off the rails ... Much melodrama ensues, including some gratuitous violence. Nevertheless, Frost offers plenty of punchy lines...It’s uneven, but there’s promise here.