The Last Second Chance

An Ed Earl Burch Novel
February 27, 2016
Votes: 31
Audience Adult
Word Count 60-80k (average/short)

Editing, Production, Marketing & Sales

Edited by Cheryl Pellerin
Cover design by akira007
Formatted by Amazon Createspace
Published Through Amazon Createspace – KDP
Reviewed at Venture Galleries
Read a positive review

The Rundown

Dallas detective Ed Earl Burch (Burch) is enjoying a favorite Mexican dish when a small stature woman, namely Carla Sue Cantrell, points a large .45 caliber gun right at him. Carla drops the name of Teddy Roy Bonafacio (T-Roy) and immediately Burch conjures up a flurry of memories, many of which are disturbing. Indeed, Teddy is nothing but bad news. Carla leads Burch over to the estate of the infamous Neville Ross, T-Roy’s previous boss. Bent on revenge, Neville intends to use Burch to scout out T-Roy’s whereabouts and gun him down.


Neville never gets to execute his diabolical plan when a “whooshing rush of flame” enters the room and consumes him. Carla and Burch hightail out of Ross’ place with one goal in mind: to get T-Roy. Heading to Mexico to locate T-Roy, Carla and Burch gear up for their trip. Yet en route others are hot on their trail since Burch has been accused of murdering a woman. Obviously, Carla and Burch have no idea of this accusation let alone how they’ll deal with unexpected situations that will meet them around the bend. While trouble seems to stick to them like glue, time will only tell if they’ll be equipped to deal with T-Coy.


Jim Nesbitt’s debut read is one rollicking adventure into a world of violence, gore, and all things sexual. Nesbitt’s narrative—wrapped up in crass and crude lingo—features Burch, an ex-cop with a history replete with unresolved conflict. While keeping Burch front and center, Nesbitt introduces an array of colorful characters (supporting, foils) that play important parts in the storyline and cast development. Chapters alternate between the present, the past (memories), and Nesbitt’s cast, and often close with cliffhanging endings. There’s no banality to be had in Nesbitt’s plot. Scenes suddenly shift out of nowhere, yet all come together to create one heck of a page-turner. Nesbitt should be considered a rising author of dark comedy. Kudos to Nesbitt for producing a well written and absurdly entertaining first read!

The Recommendation

The first book in the Ed Earl Burch series, The Last Second Chance isn’t for everyone. Audiences who get a thrill out of Quentin Tarentino’s flicks will no doubt find Nesbitt’s plot captivating from beginning to end.

The Rating Selected as a Top Pick!

Top Pick! 5 Stars (out of five): Freaking amazing. Any agent or publishing house that passed this one up made a big mistake. It was selected by our reviewer as a personal favorite. This is also a nomination for our Novel of the Year award.

The Pros & Cons

Pros: Characterization, Dialogue, Humor, Page Turner, Plot, Unique Style

The Reviewer

Anita Lock

Anita is a woman of many hats: a wife, a mother, a grandmother, and a long-time educator with degrees in Music Education and Library Science.

Visit Anita Lock‘s website.

Author’s Summary

Ed Earl Burch, a cashiered vice and homicide detective, has his life narrowed down to chasing financial fugitives from the carnage of the oil bust and savings and loan crash that scarred Dallas in the mid-1980s. Throw in the occasional wayward spouse and a ready eye for the next round of bourbon, sipped with a boot resting on the rail of his favorite saloon.


He’s an ex-jock gone to seed, a private investigator with bad knees and a battered soul. He’s trying to keep at bay the memories of three ex-wives, the violent mistakes that got him booted off the force, a dead partner and the killer who got snuffed before Burch could track him down. Play it smart and cautious. Keep the lines straight. Don’t take a risk. Don’t give a damn. It’s the creed of the terminal burnout and he’s living it a day at a time, drink by drink.


That all changes when Carla Sue Cantrell, a short blonde with ice-blue eyes and a taste for muscle cars, crystal meth and the high-wire double-cross, walks into his life. Pointing a Colt 1911 at his head, she tells him his partner’s killer, a narco named Teddy Roy Bonafacio, is still alive. She forces him into a deadly game where Burch is framed for murder and chased by cops and the narco’s hitman. They’re on the run through the scrubby Texas Hill Country and the high desert of El Paso and northern Mexico, gunning for the same man both want dead – T-Roy, the narco known as El Rojo Loco.


Final destination – kill or be killed.


Take a waltz across Texas with Ed Earl Burch and Carla Sue Cantrell. It’s one helluva dance.


Short Description

Ed Earl Burch is an ex-Dallas homicide detective tormented by memories of a dead partner and a killer snuffed before Burch could track him down. He’s a burnout, living drink by drink. Then Carla Sue Cantrell points a Colt 1911 at him and says the killer is still alive.


Cowboy Noir For The Cartel Era

Additional Links

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Community Endorsements

‘It’s A Fast Ride’

“If Chandler’s noir was a neon sign in the LA sunset, Nesbitt’s noir is the Shiner Bock sign buzzing outside the last honky-tonk you’ll hit before the long drive to the next one. On the way you’ll pass towns with names like Crumley and Portis. Roll down the window; it’s a hot night. It’s a fast ride.”
– James Lileks, author of The Casablanca Tango, columnist for the National Review and Star Tribune of Minneapolis, creator of

– posted by Jim Nesbitt    

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