A Black Horse Western from Hale, 1989
A mystery rider has appeared and like a phantom he doesn’t leave tracks. Then the killings begin. Sheriff Hall begins putting the pieces together and soon the jigsaw is almost complete. When Talbot is shot the sheriff has reason to believe his theory is correct but then a stranger hits town. A cowboy with his silver decorated saddle and an entourage of bodyguards; he makes quite an impression on the folk of Bannonville. He makes an impression on the sheriff too, but an altogether different one...
Martin Bishop is one of the many pseudonyms used by Lauran Paine and here he starts the book off well with the mystery of the phantom rider. Plenty of questions about this horseman and the ensuing killings pulled me into the story.
Unfortunately I didn’t think Paine kept the mysterious elements going long enough. Shortly into the book the sheriff, and the reader, begin to figure out the plot and this is all to readily revealed in the storyline and all to soon the book falls into a familiar western tale.
The book is written well enough and proves an entertaining read that builds well to its straight forward, no twists, ending. Unfortunately I couldn’t help feeling cheated somewhat as the beginning promised so much.