Monday 31 December 2018

Westerns read during 2018

A renewed interest in a couple of other hobbies has seen my time for reading diminish so I haven't read as many books as I would have liked to this year. My aim in 2019 is to rectify this by balancing my time better (best laid plans and all that...) as there have been many books released that I would have liked to read. As always click on the book number to be taken to the review.

1. Maggie O’Bannen #2: Wanted: Dead by Joe Slade
2. A Sidekick’s Tale by Elisabeth Grace Foley
3. Shawn Starbuck #1: The Rimrocker by Ray Hogan
4. Shawn Starbuck #2: The Outlawed by Ray Hogan
5. McClain by Will Keen
6. The Undertaker #4: Three Graves to a Showdown by George G. Gilman
7. Ball Creek Zach #1: West of Fort Laramie by Steve Ritchie
8. Hot Lead Issue 1: The Piccadilly Cowboys published by The Paperback Fanatic
9. The Man Who Burned Hell! by Sam Clancy
10. Shawn Starbuck #3: Three Cross by Ray Hogan
11. Shawn Starbuck #4: Deputy of Violence by Ray Hogan
12. 52 Weeks – 52 Western Novels by Scott Harris and Paul Bishop
13. The Sons of Daniel Shaye #4: Return to Vengeance Creek by Robert J. Randisi
14. The Ramseys by Will McLennan
15. Emmett Strong #3: Strong Ambitions by GP Hutchinson
16. Man River by Donald Hamilton
17. Hard to Quit by Mark Mitten
18. Head West Magazine: Issue 1 published by Piccadilly Publishing
19. Brock Clemons #4: Battle on the Plateau by Scott Harris
20. Wilkie John #2: Dead and Buried by Tim Bryant
21. Hot Lead Issue 2: The Art of the Western published by The Paperback Fanatic
22. The Last Red Cent by David Fetter
23. John Hawk #2: No Justice in Hell by Charles G. West
24. Coyote by Lee Clinton
25. The Sins of Motherlode by Gillian F. Taylor
26. The Crooked M Killings by Frank Ellis Evans
27. Hawk by Bret Sanders
28. Bounty by Chance by J.L. Guin
29. Maggie O'Bannen 3: Nowhere to Run by Joe Slade
30. Brock Clemons #5: Mojave Massacre by Scott Harris
31. The Trailsman #128: Snake River Butcher by Jon Sharpe
32. Flashflood by Gil Martin
33. The Cowboy and the Cossack by Huffaker 
34. Enemies by Geo. W. Proctor
35. The Trail to Devil’s Canyon by Cole Matthews
36. Tennessee Smith #1: A Bad Place to Die by Easy Jackson
37. Sheriff Aaron Mackey #1: Where the Bullets Fly by Terrence McCauley
38. The Landon Saga #11: Winchester by Tell Cotton
39. Holmes on the Range #6: The Double-A Western Detective Agency by Steve Hockensmith

Thursday 27 December 2018


The Landon Saga #11
By Tell Cotten
Solstice publishing, November 2018

Winchester Landon is on his way to the nearest Army outpost when he finds an injured Apache. Against his better judgment, he decides to help.

His choice has lingering consequences. Along the way, Winchester gets tangled up with three men looking for revenge, two dishonorable scouts, a talkative gunfighter, a war chief out for blood, and a woman he’s not sure he can trust.

We first met Winchester in the previous book in the Landon Saga and as many of Tell Cotten’s fans hoped he now gets to star in his own story. This tale does continue a couple of storylines from book ten but if you haven’t read that Tell gives enough information about events in Midway that you’ll easily understand what is going on in this one.

Like all the books in this excellent series this story is extremely fast-paced and contains some terrific dialogue and well-drawn characters, especially Choctaw. Action scenes are vividly written and the plot is nicely thought out, offering a neat twist near the end that involves Winchester having nerves of steel. 

Winchesters involvement with the woman mentioned in the blurb forms a major part of this story and his growing feelings for her see him challenging his motivations and job as an army scout and this complication kept me turning the pages alone as I had to find out how this would work out.

Winchester isn’t a long book, the print version clocking in at 164 pages and all too soon I found myself at the end and am left hoping Mr. Cotten doesn’t keep us waiting another year to find out what happens next – yeap, the author leaves a couple of threads hanging to ensure you’ll have to buy the next book in the series, but then all of us who have read Tell’s work would do that anyway as you can guarantee you’ll be getting a top-class read.