In this month’s book review, Damien Roos dives into Jonathan Starke’s debut novel, You’ve Got Something Coming, out Friday from Black Heron Press. Roos calls the novel an “elevated fight tale,” and his rendering of the “sweet science… deft.”
Lenny “Trucks” Babineaux is just the flawed, dogged down-and-outer readers love in fight fiction. The hero of Jonathan Starke’s debut novel You’ve Got Something Coming will stop at nothing for a final chance to forge a respectable life with his young daughter, even when this puts their safety at considerable risk. Starke’s novel is a statement of love enduring through hard times, a gritty road story wherein the prospects often seem as bleak as the Badlands hills the pugilist and his daughter traverse.
Having lost her due to run-ins with the law and financial struggles, Trucks arrives at the state-run children’s home in the dead of night much in the same condition as the hearing aids he’s brought her: used and worn, partially broken from the many fights he’s taken over the past six months to balance out his debts. He lies, “I’ve got a gift for you outside. A really special one.” Just like that they’re off on a hitchhiking journey across open country.