Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Noteworthy Reads: OUTLAW RANGER by James Reasoner

James Reasoner writes clean, buttery smooth prose that goes down as easy home cookin'. He seasons it a bit to whatever genre he is writing in, but the basic fare remains Reasoner and that means the reader is sure to come away well satisfied.
James is especially adept at writing Westerns and one need look no further than his latest, OUTLAW RANGER, for an example of his polished skill and for some of the finest Western fiction being done today. Although some of the circumstances in OUTLAW RANGER are based on historical fact, the imaginative storyline and creative twists contained therein are strictly Reasoner.
The protagonist here --- G.W. Braddock --- was born to be a Texas Ranger, and nothing else. He was set on this path by his overbearing father, who was himself a Ranger, and locked into the role by his own determination, stubbornness, and love of the job. When a quirk in the law deprives G.W. from continuing as a Ranger, it is a devastating blow. Complicating matters even more, two of G.W.'s most recent arrests --- a pair of murderous and wholly despicable lowlifes --- are set free under the guise of not having been apprehended "legally". 
(The parallel to some of today's legal shenanigans that too frequently allow obvious scumbags to walk free via even more ridiculous decisions, is painfully familiar.)
G.W. knows that the men who got set free are not done with their ruthless ways … just as he knows damn well that he is not ready to quit being a Ranger, whether some cockeyed court ruling says so or not. The violent, action-packed series of events that eventually cause their trails to converge once again makes for a rousing Western adventure and a page-turning experience for the reader.
Strongly recommended.

And a bit of added good news is that this is the first in an exciting new series planned by James.
He has already announced that the next, HANGMAN'S KNOT, will be available before the end of the year.
I, for one, can hardly wait!

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