Jesus Out to Sea - James Lee Burke
This is one of those books that I'm glad I've read, given my liking for the author, but also wouldn't have bought (thanks, library system!) because I've yet to come across any collection of short stories that holds my attention the same way as a novel.

I've long been a fan of James Lee Burke's crime novels, which I recommend like crazy to anyone who hasn't come across him. He's essentially a novellist who happens to write crime, with a deft touch and lyrical language describing both the people and the places where his stories are set.

In Jesus Out to Sea, we get a collection of Burke's most recent short stories, which are sadly not quite up to the quality of his longer works. But then the most recent of his books that I read was the superb The Tin Roof Blowdown, which dealt with the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and had me in tears at the end. That was always going to be a tough act to follow.