as by Hank Edwards
Harper, September 1991
Receiving a desperate message for help from Sheriff Mike Walker, Judge Clay Torn heads for North Fork Town in the Nations. He’s greeted by the body of Sheriff Walker, back shot. With no clues Torn still resolves to find the murderer. Not long after a woman is brutally butchered but are the killings linked? Torn still has very few clues as his hunt takes him into a web of fear and death.
I felt the beginning of the book was a little slow, the first chapter reading pretty much like a history lesson of the Nations and the tribes that lived there. Fascinating stuff, but it didn’t do much to grip and pull me into the story. I feel this kind of information is better interspersed throughout the story.
Once Torn sees the horse carrying Walkers body come into town the story really picked up, and I found the book difficult to put aside for any length of time. Torn has lots of suspects but little to no proof. As the body count increases so more characters are introduced, all of who become more suspects.
The author, (Jason Manning) writes well, adding clues and red herrings throughout, a couple of the murders are particularly brutal and the book has some excellent gunfights near the end.
This turned out to be an excellent read, and one that should appeal to most western fans.