First, let’s just get this out of the way. This is a weird review to write because the book is a tribute to me. I’m still getting used to this honor, and it remains surreal. However, I figure I could get away with writing this because, while all of the stories have me as the protagonist, I didn’t write any of them.
But those who did write them did a great job. Charles Ray opens with a story about a young man, who, with nothing but his horse and some courage, backs down the town bully — and you can guess how that’s received by the town beauty. Jim Burnett follows with a tale about a young man with some unique horse breaking skills and Jim Stroud writes a terrific, action-filled tale of redemption.
Doug Cobb focuses on guns, cigars and bourbons, so you know he had me from the first sentence, and Fred Staff has us thinking one thing the whole story and switches it up at the end — a nice twist on stereotypes. Arlo Flynn, who no one seems to know much about, has a huge Dane as one of the main characters, a little unusual, but fun, for a Western.
Robert Hanlon brings a strong dose of religion to an atheist protagonist, a story which struck surprisingly close to home.
But I’d be fibbing if I didn’t say that the last story was my favorite. Not just because it was well written and a good story (as they all are), but because it was written by Justin Harris, my son.
Bottom line? Even if your name isn’t Scott Harris, I think you’ll find this anthology to be filled with terrific, fast-paced, inventive, fun, good old-fashioned Westerns!