JOHN HAWK 3
By Charles G. West
Pinnacle, August 2020
Raised among the Blackfoot, John Hawk is a valuable asset to the US Army. As a military scout at Fort Ellis, he is able to cross the line between two worlds – and help keep the peace. But when he disobeys a direct order from his commander, Hawk is immediately dismissed from his post. That was the army’s first mistake.
The second was losing track of a small mule train en route to Helena. At the request of his former lieutenant, Hawk leaves his cabin on the Boulder River to help find the missing party. The mule train, it appears, was ambushed by a savage gang of outlaws. Most of the travelers were murdered. Only a few survived to tell the tale. And now it’s up to Hawk to stalk the killers across the lawless Montana territory – alone. No Backup. No calvary. No mercy . . .
It’s been over two years since the last John Hawk western was published, and now we have the third. Was the wait worth it? For me, it definitely was.
Charles G. West has once again written a gripping story that has as its main theme a manhunt. To start with Hawk is reluctant to pursue five killers alone, would prefer to have the backing of a calvary troop, but events he can’t control find him having to continue the hunt unaided. Along the way, Hawk meets a variety of characters that both hinder and aid him in his quest to track the outlaws down.
There’s one particularly tense scene where Hawk meets David Booth, the leader of the outlaws, unknowingly and that was just one of the highlights of this fast-moving tale. A character named Frog made a lasting impression too.
Eventually, all trails lead to Helena and a number of people from the earlier books make an appearance and have major parts to play in how the story concludes.
I’ve yet to read a book by Charles G. West that I haven’t enjoyed and this is another one to add to that list. Now, I just have to hope we don’t have to wait another two years or so before another John Hawk western appears.