Mick and Casey McKee ride into Newton to find it filled to the brim with donkeys and hopeful miners. Before they can do more than stable their horses a group of gunmen ride into town shooting everything they see, beginning with the man who gave them corral space and ending up at the town’s bank.
As both Mick and his wife Casey are gunslingers they naturally get involved and help route the invaders. And in doing so they become involved with the war between Lester Addley and a man named Hoonstra. Addley owns a stagecoach line that dominates the town and the territory around it. Hoonstra sells land to settlers who want the railroad to come through the area—which Addley will do anything to prevent. Not only would it threaten his business but also a lucrative sideline he runs by enticing gullible miners into town with rumors of gold strikes.
Mick and Casey are unlikely gunslingers. Mick is just twenty-years-old while Casey is perhaps seventeen. Mick isn’t sure about that since she won’t tell him her birthdate but claimed to be sixteen when they’d met the year before. While Mick is easy-going, Casey is a firecracker and quick to take offense. Both of them are underestimated by most people, which works to their advantage. What I really like about them is how Mick admires his wife’s independence and shooting ability and makes no attempt to curtail either while at the same time obviously caring for her deeply.
At the end of the sample Addley’s brother comes to hire them as protection for Addley’s daughter on a journey to Quester Springs which will take her out of harm’s way. Mick has doubts about how much Addley would care about his daughter’s welfare if push came to shove. But since neither of them has ever been to Quester Springs and the trip will get them out of Addley’s territory, Mick and Casey take the job.
This sample is three chapters long and while it is enjoyable and well written, the mystery part doesn’t rear its head during it. Judging by the description given in its Kindle listing, the mystery kicks in during the journey to Quester Springs.
There are a couple of misspellings, one in the heading for chapter two, a couple of misused words (“were” instead of “where” for example) and a couple of missing spaces. Simple spell-check could have caught those. Other than those errors the sample is well-formatted and edited.
This is a fun western and the story is so well written that I purchased the book after reading the sample. This book is perfect for those who like light Westerns as well as mystery fans who enjoy subgenres such as this.