Mike Olive returns to his hometown with a group of fellow Duke students to investigate the overall decline of tobacco farming as well as the use, and abuse, of Mexican migrant workers. Determined to rid his town of corruption and bigotry, Mike makes the migrant workers his crusade, much to the consternation of his father and his neighbors. Conflicts mount as he accuses farmers of rumored crimes and falls in love with Hermalinda, the beautiful and remarkably self-possessed daughter of one of his father's workers. Mike's "townie" rival, the wickedly charming but fatefully doomed Harvey Dickerson, deftly challenges Mike's naive and nearly evangelical convictions. Longstanding family rivalries and loyalties erupt into brutal violence that forever changes the town.
From Hermalinda's rich and turbulent life on the Texas-Mexico border and her conflicting feelings about her affair with the boss's son to Harvey's silver-tongued philosophizing and Mike's well-intentioned but woefully destructive actions, the complex community of this troubled southern town is vividly realized. Luck is a compelling, incisive, and stunningly written novel. Eric Martin is a unique and brilliant new voice in fiction.