Covey Jencks grew up in Odessa, Texas. After college, he joined the Army, attended law school, clerked on the Fifth Circuit, and suffered a stint at a D. C. law firm. He quits a life of white privilege to return home to solve the mysterious 1979 murder of Freddie Johnson, a black employee at Covey’s family business. Her life matters to Covey. For cover Covey opens a small firm filled with big characters. Eventually another black woman reenters his life to become Covey’s crime-solving partner. Mexican gangs, Boston mobsters, and racist cops complicate but do not derail the successful investigation.
Cold Coffee Review: If you long for freedom from all the things that hold your down, I suggest you get to know a young Texan lawyer named Covey Jencks, because he cherishes freedom and wide-open ranges.
Author Shelton L. Williams weaves this well written, fast-paced fiction with believable characters to take you back in America’s southern history, with enough suspense to keep you turning the page.
It was March 1979, when Alfreda (Freddie) Mae Johnson (a southern black women) died. It was her death that would eventually take young Covey Jencks from his beloved oil country of West Texas to the seat of political power in Washington D.C.
To understand Covey, we must start with his college days where Led Zeppelin filled the dorm halls, margaritas and weed played with the senses, and girls made Covey’s first night at school “the first day of the rest of my life”. Covey’s love for the month of September, (beginning of the school year) that made the launch of Jencks Law Firm perfect.
Depending on your age, you will relate to this time (1970’s through 1990’s) drenched in racial tensions, Vietnam war, college football pride, mobsters, gangs, bad cops, young love and for Covey, a nagging need to know what brought Freddie to such a violent end.
This is a great read and I am hoping that this is a prequel to the Covey Jencks series, as there are never enough sleuths to satisfy mystery, thriller suspense enthusiasts like myself.
I, Theodocia McLean, endorse Covey Jencks by Shelton L. Williams. This book is available in paperback and Kindle. I purchased this book in Kindle. This review was completed on February 24, 2017.
Genre: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Private Investigators
In the August 2006 Texas Monthly article on Charles Whitman (“96 Minutes,” by Pamela Colloff), Shelton Williams is a character in the recounting of the Whitman tragedy. Shelly was there when the shooting started, but it was not his first encounter with the young man who weaken so much havoc on that hot August day in Austin in 1966. While Shelly and Charlie did know each other, they were not friends and they were not adversaries at the University of Texas in the spring and summer of 1966. They were just two guys with troubled families, personal insecurities, and challenged young marriages. Summer of ’66 is not about Charles Whitman and it is not about why the two young men took such different paths. It is memoir about life at UT, about a mystery man, and about a young man and woman who faced a changing and dangerous world in a courageous way. Charles Whitman is simply a character in this true story.
Shelton and Janell Williams survived August 1, 1966, and the summer of ’66. Shelly got a PhD in International Studies, taught at Austin College for thirty-six years and through the organization he founded and of which he is president, The Osgood Center for International Studies, continues to run the Washington Program for Austin College students and students from around the world. Janell graduated from Austin College and worked twenty-five distinguished years for the Social Security Administration. They now live in the Washington, DC area. Each thanks the other for forty-two years of eventful married life, and both look forward to the next “five-year review” of their marriage. It comes up in 2009.
Review: by Amazon Customer. 5.0 out of 5 stars
June 15, 2017. Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A remarkable book. Shelton Williams is a talented author and his personal involvement with the tragedy puts him at center stage to share his tale.
Review: SanIsaac B. Morgan. 4.0 out of 5 stars
December 7, 2006. Format: Paperback
This is a sweet follow up to Dr. Williams first book, Washed in the Blood. It tells the story of his last summer at the University of Texas before going to grad school and his life with his lovely wife, Janell. He was acquainted with Charles Whitman, the sniper in the UT tower who randomly shot at people in the streets of Austin, before being killed by two very brave Austin police officers. It asks the question, “Why do some people facing certain adverse situations become stronger, while others snap?” If you would like a taste of the feel of 1960’s America during its loss of innocence, this is a great place to start.
Genre: Literature & Fiction, Drama & Plays, Regional & Cultural
Washed in the Blood is just remarkable in so many ways, hypnotic, eerie, a spine-tingling murder mystery and also a haunting memoir of what it’s like to grow up in one of strangest and most fascinating places on the face of the earth. I was hooked by the first page, and Shelton Williams’ writing is honest and beautiful. One of those rare books that grabs and won’t let go, even after you have read it.
Review: Williams’ gripping account of the death of his cousin is the stuff of great literature. Except it’s tragically real. By Gary Cartwright, senior editor, Texas Monthly
Review: A page-turning, crackling read about… the ‘Kiss and Kill’ murder of a 17-year-old. By Larry L. King, author, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas
Review: Hypnotic, eerie, a spine-tingling murder mystery and also a haunting memoir … I was hooked by the first page. by Buzz Bissinger, author, Friday Night Lights
Genre: Biographies & Memoirs, Arts & Literature, True Crime
Cold Coffee Press Spotlight Interview With Shelton L. Williams
Author Shelton L. William has published five books and contributed to two others. He chooses write about crime and society, because he can present complications, brain teasers, and personal stories. His book titles are Covey Jencks (mystery, thriller & suspense), Washed In The Blood (Biographies & Memoirs, Arts & Literature and True Crime) and Summer of ’66 (Literature & Fiction, Drama & Plays and Regional & Cultural).
His favorite author is Walter Moseley because he tells great stories with interesting characters and they may a point about important issues in American society.
Shelton believes that everyone has a story, so write yours.
What makes you proud to be a writer from Bethesda MD? Texas originally, but now Bethesda MD. I am proud to be a Texas writer because many Texans are good story-tellers. I’d like to count myself among them.
What or who inspired you to become a writer? My teachers from high school on inspired me, but in fact I have always enjoyed writing.
Did your environment or upbringing play a major role in your writing and did you use it to your advantage? My environment was rough and tumble, anti-intellectual, and geographically remote. It gave me an exotic place to locate my stories.
When did you begin writing with the intention of becoming published? I have PhD in International Relations and to publish is the end-all. I published my first book at 23.
What has been your most rewarding experience with your writing process? Meeting people from all over the world who related to my stories.
What has been your most rewarding experience in your publishing journey? Meeting former students who tell me that my books inspired, informed, or helped them.
How many published books do you have? I have published 5 books and contributed to two others. The last three, however, have been for the general public.
Please list the titles of all your books: Just my general releases: Washed in the Blood, Summer of 66, and Covey Jencks.
Please tell me the genre of each of your books. Two are non-fiction crimes novels and one is a murder mystery.
Do you come up with your title(s) before or after you write the manuscript? I had the titles well before.
Please introduce your genre and why you prefer to write in that genre? I write about crime and society. I prefer to write this way because I can present complications, brain teasers, and personal stories.
Which book title would you like featured in this interview? Covey Jencks.
What one positive piece of advice would you give to other authors? Everyone has a story, so write yours.
Who is your favorite author and why? Walter Moseley because he tells great stories with interesting characters and they may a point about important issues in American society.
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