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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

‘Blacktop Wasteland’
by S.A. Cosby
In The Spotlight



Thanks to the lovely Claire, representing Flatiron Books for the invitation to take part in the promotion of this book and to the great team at NetGalley for their ever speedy download service.

There is no official promotional tour banner for this book, nor is there extract or author content available, however the amazing ratings and reviews this book has attracted so far across several sites, speak volumes, as does the powerful premise.


Cover image of the book 'Blacktop Wasteland' by author S.A. CosbyIT’S A CRIME THAT HISTORY REPEATS ITSELF.

Beauregard “Bug” Montage: husband, father, honest car mechanic. But he was once known – from North Carolina to the beaches of Florida – as the best getaway driver on the East Coast. Just like his father, who disappeared many years ago.

After a series of financial calamities (worsened by the racial prejudices of the small town he lives in) Bug reluctantly takes part in a daring diamond heist to solve his money troubles – and to go straight once and for all. However, when it goes horrifically wrong, he’s sucked into a grimy underworld which threatens everything, and everyone, he holds dear . . .

From a stunning new voice in fiction, BLACKTOP WASTELAND is a dazzling, operatic crime novel that holds up a cracked mirror to the American dream.

With breakneck twists, heart-breaking intents and the missteps of its indelible characters, S.A. Cosby weaves a story about black male identity, about what it means to be from the South and have its history not include your story, and about the pull of family and its confusing messages about love and inheritance.

Cover image of the book 'Blacktop Wasteland' by author S.A. Cosby


Beauregard Montage knows how to fix any car — but that would be selling him short. He knows how to make an ordinary American car something that flies, something that, under his hands on the wheel, can take its driver places. He came to that knowledge through heritage, love and the lure of dangerous getaways.

But he is in a town that has no call for those skills.

He’s got a repair shop that is floundering, a wife and two sons, a daughter from an earlier time, and the car he inherited from his father, a Plymouth Duster.

Late at night, when he races the car ten miles out from the fairgrounds in the back road illegal races, he feels most like himself. He feels reconnected to the part of him that has no part in this other life he knows he needs to live for the people he loves.

It’s always there though, just below the surface, that desire for one more getaway drive, one more adrenaline boosting race against the cops.

So as his respectable life begins to crumble, a shady associate comes calling with a clean, one-time job: a diamond heist promising a get-rich pay-out. Inexorably drawn to the driver’s seat – and haunted by the ghost of his outlaw father – Bug is yanked back into a savage world of bullets and betrayal, which soon endangers all he holds dear…

This stunning novel holds up a cracked mirror to the woozy ideals of the American dream – a dazzling, operatic story of a man pushed to his limits by poverty, race and a scarred, self-destructive masculinity.

Cover image of the book 'Blacktop Wasteland' by author S.A. Cosby


Im age of author S.A. CosbyShawn A. Cosby is a writer from Southeastern Virginia, who majored in English at Christopher Newport University and now resides in Gloucester, Virginia.

His short fiction has appeared in numerous anthologies and magazines. His short story The Grass Beneath My Feet won the Anthony award for best short story in 2019. He is also the author of My Darkest Prayer and Brotherhood of the Blade.

His writing is influenced by his experiences as a bouncer, construction worker, retail manager and for six hours a mascot for a major fast food chain inside the world’s hottest costume.

When Shawn isn’t crafting tales of murder and mayhem, he assists the dedicated staff at J.K. Redmond Funeral home, as a mortician’s assistant.

He is an avid hiker and is also known as one hell of a chess player.

Follow Shawn A. Cosby on Twitter

Connect with Shawn A. Cosby on Facebook


Written by

I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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    • Hi Naida,

      Yes! This whole package is really ‘on trend’ right now, for so many reasons!

      However, I am really only going to take the story for what it sounds like at face value, that is, a tough and often emotional thriller, and see where the journey takes me from there.

      Thanks for stopping by and I hope that all is well with you 🙂

  • This almost sounds like a mash up of several different plots, but that’s part of what makes it appealing! It sounds interesting and I look forward to getting a few excerpts from it…. especially (hopefully) including a “book beginnings” entry.

    • Hello! Kelly,

      I’m not too sure how long it is going to be before I can get to read this book, as I have quite a backlog of Blog Tour / Review dates coming up.

      I do seem to be reading a little faster than usual, but that is only because I am here all day, so let’s just hope I don’t get called back into the charity shop anytime soon!

      I am quite enjoying be able to mix up my genres a bit more too, so ‘Blacktop Wasteland’ is going to add some extra flavour and challenges to my list.

      Thanks for visiting and I hope that all is well with you 🙂

  • Hmm! Is it just me or does much of this seem to be aimed at if not necessarily a male audience then certainly a very masculine one. I’m intrigued as to what female readers think of the book. Will you by any chance be reading it Yvonne?

    • Hi Felicity,

      I never thought about this storyline from that male dominated angle before and I don’t tend to check out too many of the reviews of a book I am hoping to read up front, as I don’t want to be influenced in my sub-conscious thinking.

      So I went back and checked the stats on Goodreads – 215 ratings and reviews and 4.4 stars out of 5!

      That all important figure though – At a quick count, I reckon that about 50-75% of the reviews are from female readers, so I guess this one is appealing to everyone equally.

      I have quite a few books ahead of this one in my Blog Tour / Review queue right now, but yes! – I do want to read this one for myself, so I hope to share a few promotional posts about it which you might enjoy.

      Thanks for the interesting comment and I hope that all is well with you 🙂

Written by Yvonne