Tuesday 26 July 2016

Strong Suspicions

By GP Hutchinson
The Hutchinson Group LLC, March 2016

After pursuing a cold-blooded murderer all the way to Nevada, Texas Ranger Emmett Strong is returning home to San Antonio—but not alone. He’s found a girl he longs to marry. Finding someone to tie the knot for them is proving to be a challenge, however, owing to the fact that she's the daughter of Chinese immigrants. 

Along the way, there's a ruckus in El Paso's Wild Hog Saloon, and by noon the next day, folks are convinced it was Emmett and his compadres who robbed the saloon owner and beat him unconscious. They want Emmett on the end of a rope. 

Meanwhile, a bested enemy, set on revenge, hires the notorious fast gun "Three-Finger" Ned Cage to dispatch Strong, his amigos, and even his girl. 

When the only way out of trouble is to head smack-dab back into the middle of it—beautiful young woman in tow—a cool-headed pistolero like Emmett Strong becomes a force to be reckoned with. But will the vicious array of enemies prove to be too much this time, even for Strong?

GP Hutchinson once again comes up with the goods in this, his second Emmett Strong western. It begins shortly after the last book ended and continues the threads left hanging at that books conclusion. Once again the theme of racial prejudice plays an important role throughout the story and Hutchinson puts this over well. If that isn’t enough of a problem for Strong he also has to try and clear his name of robbery and then there are those coming gunning for him he doesn’t know about. All these storylines grab the readers’ attention effortlessly making sure you’ll continue turning the pages.

“Three-Finger” Ned Cage is a well thought out character who proves to be an excellent adversary for Strong. If you want to know why he’s called “Three-Finger” you’ll have to find out by reading the book.

Although this book can be read, and enjoyed as a self-contained novel it might be advantageous to read the earlier book, Strong Convictions, first so you know exactly how the characters came to be in the position you find them in at the start of this one.

On reaching the final page I was once again left looking forward to discovering what GP Hutchinson has in store for Strong in the next book of the series.

GP Hutchinson recently won the Western Fictioneers 2016 Peacemaker Award for Best First Novel (Strong Convictions).

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