by Elliot Long
A Black Horse Western from Hale, May 2010
It was with a near-broken heart and a deep hatred that Jim McKendry looked down at his father lying dead in his coffin. He could barely look at the lifeless face and the silk wrapping that covered the ghastly wound across his father’s throat.
Jim swore that someone would pay for his father’s death and no matter what it took the killer would be brought to justice – alive or dead.
With over thirty Black Horse Westerns to his name, Elliot Long has become a favourite with many readers, so it may come as a surprise when I tell you, that even though a number of his books can be found in my collection, this is the first story of his I’ve read.
Elliot Long knows how to pace a story, how to create memorable characters, and how to spring surprises on the reader. All his story threads race towards a brutal and well-written final showdown that ties everything up neatly.
The story shows how a man can be driven by the lust for revenge, so much so everything else in his life is pushed aside, including his woman and his family. For me, though, Jim McKendry isn’t the most fascinating character in this story, that honour falls to the hired assassin, van Otis, a man with ties to the Tongs.
At first I was disappointed Elliot Long let on who had hired van Otis but this lead to a neat twist in having this person killed off soon after, rubbed out by van Otis, and this time the identity of the hirer is kept a secret. The author gives a few hints as to who this person is, but too many characters fit with these clues, thus ensuring the reader continues to keep turning the pages.
Looks like it won’t be long before I’m hunting through my collection for more of Elliot Long’s books.
Big Trouble at Flat Rock is available to order now from all the usual Internet sources even though it has an official release date of May 31st.