Sunday, September 02, 2012
Wolf Creek: Bloody Trail
This is the first in a series of ebooks from the Western Fictioneers and if I understand its rather sinuous structure properly, each viewpoint character will be written by a different author. Also, this first edition is written by six scribes, each taking two consecutive chapters. Wolf Creek is a small town struggling to survive in post-Civil War Kansas. There are the understandable resentments among the residents who fought on opposite sides during the Recent Unpleasantness, but mostly folks get along. When a gang of former Confederate raiders invade the town to rob the bank, leaving dead people and animals in their wake, the townies assemble a posse to track them down. Some simmering resentments come to the fore during the manhunt, but by the time it's over the survivors see things in a brighter light. Because this is the first installment in a series there is a lot of exposition and backstory offered. I think it was a good two-and-a-half chapters before there was any action, but when it came it was well handled. I trust future books won't feel the need to recross the expositionary ground because even though the backgrounds of many of the charatcers are interesting, swallowing it in large doses may turn some readers off. My advice is to stick with it because there are a ton of talented people working on the books and I expect the ensuing ones to be humdingers. I know I'll be reading them. One nitpick: The Lamatt pistol, which had a shotgun barrel beneath a revolver barrel, was a 16-gauge, not 18-gauge.