Robert Flynn's new novel, Echoes of Glory centers on a fictitious Texas county that embraces its legends, but not its actual history. Set in the Reagan era, the novel exposes shared myths as lies and the truth, lacking all comfort. In his inimitable style Flynn paints a portrait of the denizens of the county who tacitly embrace the legend as all too human and all too frail.
Overshadowed by the accomplishments of adjacent Doss County, Mills County clings to its legends—the legendary Mills brothers. One brother had died at the Alamo, one at Goliad, three had fought at San Jacinto. The three survivors marched into the center of Texas bringing with them stories of heroism and acorns from the San Jacinto battlefield. According to tradition, they planted an oak tree for each hero who had died at the Alamo.
Then there was Timpson Smith, sole survivor of Second Platoon of Marine reserves, who had prevented the North Korean army from driving U.S. and U.N. forces into the sea. To honor their memory the county erected a monument, "Second to None," topped with the heroic figure of Timpson Smith.
But there is a less heroic side of Mills County. When Deputy Sheriff Larry Maddin decides to run against Sheriff and Local Hero Timpson Smith, and a drama professor at the university announces that he will write a play depicting the true story of Second Platoon, many fear the dark underside of Mills County will be exposed.