Randy Kennedy


September 12, 2019

You Can’t Win: Jack Black’s America, at Fortnight Institute, reviewed by David Markus in Art in America

August 6, 2019

Presidio named fiction finalist, 2019 Writers’ League of Texas Book Awards

July 29, 2019

You Can’t Win: Jack Black’s America, at Fortnight Institute, reviewed by Peter Schjeldahl in The New Yorker

July 10, 2019

You Can’t Win: Jack Black’s America, at Fortnight Institute, curated by Randy Kennedy, July 10-Aug. 18

July 1, 2019

Cover design for Presidio paperback, on sale August 6.

March 29, 2019

Presidio shortlisted for Reading the West Book Award

March 20, 2019

French edition of Presidio published by Delcourt Littérature

FEBRUARY 15, 2019

Critics’ Conversation: Why Directors Can't Stop Making Films About Artists

The Hollywood Reporter

december 23, 2018

Notable Books of 2018

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

december 21, 2018

Trying to Cut All Ties

Cowboys and Indians magazine

October 12, 2018

Coming Home With Presidio

Art&Seek with Jerome Weeks, KERA, National Public Radio

October 8, 2018 

Review: Hard-luck Brothers Flee Across Texas in Presidio

Houston Chronicle

september 17, 2018

Review: In Debut Novel, San Antonio Native Offers Bleak Look at West Texas

San Antonio Express-News

September 14, 2018

Review: The Road Goes On Forever

The Austin Chronicle

September 13, 2018

Editors’ Choice: Presidio

The New York Times Sunday Book Review

september 10, 2018

Presidio Author Randy Kennedy Tried to Flee Texas But Its ‘Messy Glory’ Brought Him Back Home

The Dallas Morning News

September 3, 2018

High Plains Drifter: A Review of Presidio by Lee Child

The New York Times Sunday Book Review

Kennedy’s various narrative voices sound like those of taciturn individuals who may never have heard a complete sentence except in church, who are now somehow compelled to speak, as if on the witness stand, at first hesitant, then finding sudden new pleasure in expressing themselves. … a fluent, mordant, authentic, propulsive narrative, wonderfully lit from within … This is his first novel and it left me hoping he writes many more.

 SepTember 3, 2018

Two Very Different Novels Make for Great Late-Summer Reading

The Texas Standard



August 27, 2018

A Conversation about Presidio with Clay Smith and Megan Labrise

Kirkus Reviews' Fully Booked podcast



august 27, 2018

Review: Presidio's Main Man: Empty, Engaging

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette


AUGUST 21, 2018

Review: Randy Kennedy's First Novel, Presidio, Might Be The First Must-Read Texas Novel Of The Fall

The Dallas Morning News


August 20, 2018

Presidio on the Approval Matrix (Highbrow, Brilliant)

New York


August 17, 2018

In Randy Kennedy's Presidio, A Startling Road Trip Thriller Full of Twists and Turns



August 12, 2018

Review: A Peculiarly American Restlessness

Lone Star Literary Life


August 1, 2018

The Road to Presidio

Texas Monthly


July 23, 2018

Reading Tour Dates Announced For Presidio!

September 6, 7 p.m., Community Bookstore, 143 Seventh Avenue, Brooklyn, New York.

September 11, 7 p.m., Brazos Bookstore, 2421 Bissonnet Street, Houston, Texas.

September 12, 7 p.m, Interabang Books, 10720 Preston Road, Dallas, Texas.

September 13, 7 p.m., BookPeople, 603 North Lamar Boulevard, Austin, Texas.

September 14, 7 p.m., Crowley Theater, 98 South Austin Street, Marfa, Texas (presented by the Marfa Book Company.)

September 18, 7 p.m., Karma Books, 136 East Third Street, New York, New York.


July 1, 2018

UT Alumnus' Debut Novel Takes Readers on a Texas Panhandle Adventure

Alcalde magazine


JUNE 1, 2018

Publishers Weekly review of Presidio:

In this stellar debut, it’s 1972, and Troy Falconer, a professional car thief, returns home to New Cona, Tex. Troy comes at the request of his younger brother, Harlan, whose wife, Bettie, has left him and taken all their money. The two brothers steal a car and hit the road in search of Bettie, unaware of the sleeping passenger in the backseat, Martha Zacharias, an 11-year-old runaway from a Mennonite community ... Like the young heroines of She Rides Shotgun, Martha is a memorably single-minded heroine who can stand up to adults engaged in unlawful pursuits. Kennedy soberly etches a Texas landscape of violence and despair as vividly as anything by Larry McMurtry.


May 28, 2018

Kirkus starred review of Presidio:

Two estranged brothers and an unexpected passenger embark on a road trip through Texas to recover stolen money in this strong debut.

Troy Falconer first appears in notes he's writing to explain how and why he frequents motels to steal cars, clothes, and another man’s identity. Two pages later an omniscient narrator describes Troy returning in November 1972 to his hometown in the Texas Panhandle for the first time in over six years. He and his brother, Harlan, have agreed to set aside grudges while trying to track down Harlan’s wife, who ran off with most of the money left him by the brothers’ father. Toggling between this narrative and the notes, Kennedy reveals one rootless man charting a larcenous course through America and one tied to a dot on the map: "I’ve spent my whole life here, Troy. Inside of a ten-mile radius," Harlan says. When Troy steals a car at a grocery store, the brothers are unaware that an 11-year-old named Martha is sleeping in the back seat. She adds a third narrative, of a father and daughter separated when he is jailed, wrongly, for kidnapping her, while she is placed with an aunt, whose Ford Country Squire station wagon catches Troy’s eye. The feisty girl wants the brothers to take her to El Paso and her father, but they have another target because Harlan says his wife “said something about Presidio once." Kennedy’s humor can be broad or sly. He reveals early on, for instance, the quest’s overarching absurdity when Troy says he connived with the woman who married Harlan to steal the inheritance. But she lit out on Troy as well. Kennedy has a fertile imagination he lets drift into many beguiling detours, and the writing sparkles throughout.