By Jake Shipley
Hale, September 2014
Out chasing outlaws Texas Ranger Cal Avery comes across a wrecked stagecoach, and a dead man and woman nearby. In a gully, under a juniper bush, lies another young woman, thrown clear when the coach went over and who cannot remember anything.
When a cavalry supply train comes along with Avery’s old friend, Jumbo Jepson, as the lead teamster, he decides that travelling with them is the best course of action. But in Cal’s absence, unscrupulous Indian Agent, Jake Elkins, has bribed men to swear that Cal has gunned down two innocent men in cold blood, and now there is a warrant out for his arrest.
The travellers must head for the safety of Fort Griffin, avoiding the pursuing Indians, and the corrupt law, who are trying to halt their progress….
This is the first book I’ve read carrying the author name of Jake Shipley and it’s his third I believe. Unusually for westerns being written today the bulk of the story is that of cavalry verses Indians. The first half of the book builds to a prolonged battle between the two sides that is extremely well told and makes for some gripping reading.
When the survivors finally make it to safety Avery must then face judge and jury in a trial that it seems he cannot possibly come out of a free man.
So, if you still enjoy those classic cavalry verses Indian confrontations, then this is a book you really should consider tracking down. I found it to be a very enjoyable read and I now want to dig out Jake Shipley’s previous books that I have somewhere in my collection as I’m sure they’ll be as equally entertaining.