Fifteen-year-old Vernon Gregory Little is in trouble. And it has something to do with the recent massacre of 16 students at his high school. News of the tragedy serves as open invitation to the media and soon the quirky backwater of Martirio is flooded with wannabe CNN hacks all-too-keen to lay claim to their 15 minutes, and lay the blame for the killings at Vernon's feet. Eulalio Ledesma, in particular, sniffs out his opportunity to make good at Vernon's expense and as the media net tightens, and the twisted desires of the townsfolk for a scapegoat reach fever-pitch, Vernon finds himself drawn into a series of increasingly bizarre circumstances. Eventually, with the LSD safely deposited and diluted in the ginseng, and essential travel funds procured from a distasteful trade-off with old Mr Deutschman, he succumbs to the workings of Fate and takes off for Mexico and a date - or so he hopes - with the divine Taylor Figueroa.
Vernon God Little is the only novel quite unlike any other and quite possibly the only novel to be set in the barbecue sauce capital of Central Texas. Its depiction of innocence and simple humanity (even if they be tainted by a touch or more of dysfunctional profanity here and there) in an evil world is never less than astonishing. Peopled by a cast of grotesques, freaks, cold-blooded chattering housewives (who are all mysteriously, recently widowed), and one very special adolescent with an unfortunate talent for being in the wrong place at the right time, Vernon God Little is a riotous adventure story which cuts a satirical swathe through the heart of contemporary America.