Thursday, November 12, 2015
Loyal Valley: Assassination by Elisabeth G. Wolfe
Paperback: 192 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform(August 9, 2013)
Kindle: 791 KB
Publication Date: August 20, 2013
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
Free copy received in exchange for an honest review.
Little Ranch on the Range meets Wild Wild West
Reading Loyal Valley: Assassination feels like watching a tv series from my childhood. It's not exactly a western, although it's set in Texas during and after the Civil War. The good guys are good through and through, the bad guys are mysterious and only seen from the good guys' point of view. The writer tells the story in a confident, straightforward, plain talking kind of way that reminds me of early 20th century writers.
The story follows Clint Donovan and his brother Bill as they avoid conscription in the Confederate Army by slipping into Mexico, where Clint falls in love with another émigré, the mysterious Bella. Bill later joins the Union Army, and at the close of the war Clint and Bella try to return to the Donovan ranch in Texas. But the neighbors are no longer neighborly, so they move to Loyal Valley. This covers the first third of the book, which spans five years and is basically set-up. I'll admit this part dragged a bit for me. The rest of the book spans less than a year and is when the real action starts. When I say action, I mean espionage, sabotage, gadgetry, explosions, and revelations, still told in the same down-to-earth style.
There's a lot to like about this book, specially for 19th Century Texas buffs and for people who like clean reads (no explicit language or descriptions in this at all) . I do wish the author had a historical note at the end, because I found myself wondering about some of the "contraptions" - it would have been nice to know which were actually invented by then, and which ones were anachronisms.
There are two more books in this series: Loyal Valley: Bystanders and Loyal Valley: Captives.
They are all available in both Paperback and Kindle. These links will take you to their details on Amazon:
Loyal Valley: Assassination (Volume 1)
Loyal Valley: Bystanders (Volume 2)
Loyal Valley: Captives (Volume 3)