Staff Review: Furious Hours
Author Casey Cep takes a page out of Harper Lee's book to recreate her own fact-checking non-fiction title. The book starts out by detailing the tale of Reverend Willie Maxwell, a man accused of murdering multiple family members in order to claim insurance policies he held in their names. This causes quite the stir as the public starts to believe Maxwell to be a Voodoo practitioner. The setting of 1970s Alabama thrives as the author blurs Maxwell's Alabama to that of Lee's childhood.
Cep writes about how Lee grew up surrounded by law and how that background helped propel her writing; both assisting childhood friend, Truman Capote, with his research for In Cold Blood and also, for doing her own research for her unfinished book, The Reverend. While Cep would probably like to finish the book in Lee's preference of only facts; she can only make assumptions of why Harper Lee never quite finished the book. That doesn't harm the tale, though, as Lee has always been known for being mysterious; Pulitzer Prize or not.