Friday, 24 April 2009

Rawhide Ransom

as by Tyler Hatch
A Black Horse Western from Hale, April 2009

Cole was a good sheriff, maybe a mite too lenient at times, but when the chips were down, the town of Barberry fully appreciated his prowess with guns and fists.

But they didn’t know there was a tragedy in his past that would affect his actions – until a local boy was kidnapped while Cole was supposed to be guarding him. And the only one who could deliver the ransom was Cole himself.

Tyler Hatch writes a fast moving, tough, story. His characters are well drawn and it’s good to see they make mistakes, costly mistakes. Hatch spends time describing the emotions that effect judgment and actions, which makes his characters easy to relate too. Not only does Cole have to struggle with making one of these mistakes it happens at the same time he fights the ghosts of his past each year, making for a troubled man.

There’s plenty of action before and after the kidnapping which leads to a dramatic final scene. Even though the final revelations were expected, Hatch does throw in a neat twist towards the end that took me completely by surprise, making the book impossible to put down until I’d discovered how everything worked out.

As far as I can remember this is the first book by this author I’ve read. Hatch is a pseudonym used by Keith Hetherington, who has written getting on for five hundred westerns under a variety of names. If this book is anything to go by, I’ve been missing out on some excellent reading and will soon be hunting through my collection for the other books I have by him.

An excellent interview with Keith Hetherington can be found here

As you can see from the publishing date above, Rawhide Ransom is out now, and considering how fast BHW seem to be selling out these days, I suggest you put your order in right away.


Joanne Walpole said...

Another good review, Steve. I can't keep up with all these 'must read' authors!

Chap O'Keefe said...

My Aussie pal Keith Hetherington is one of the most seriously under-rated authors in the genre! He has been writing westerns since 1957 -- yes, I've got that right -- and his total, counting all the books he did for Australia's Cleveland company must be closer to a thousand than five hundred. He switched to Hale in 1995. You can read more about him at:

He also participated in the Plot or Not debate:

Next month (i.e. mid-May) he will be sharing his thoughts in another BHW debate, headed Heroes Too Good to Kill off.

Make a diary note. I promise it's MORE "must read" stuff!

Keith H will also be contributing a Hoofprint item about Author's Copies. Such a prolific writer is knee-deep in the "freebies" as you might expect.

"Those books . . . I never know what to do with them! Yes, I've hundreds, in cartons and trunks and ports up in the shed, on the back porch and, until recently, taking up floor and wall space in my office."

Ray said...

I like Keith Hetherington's BHWs - though I do have a prefernce for Jake Douglas with Tyler Hatch coming in at second place.
I agree with Chap - this is an author who should be better known -because he is a good storyteller who makes you interested in his characters.