By Mark Bannerman
Hale, August 2012
It starts out as a simple mission to trace his kid brother, but Brad Caulderfield rides into a heap of trouble when he kills the brother of Marshal Seth Blevins.
Charged with murder and pursued by the embittered lawman, Brad has no alternative but to run for his life. He faces further complications from Stella Goodnight who is out for blood when he fails to return her affections. When his brother reappears bearing bitter resentments from the past, he is looking headlong into the face of his nemesis….
This is the first Black Horse Western from Mark Bannerman for some time, his last appeared in 2007.
Mark Bannerman throws plenty of problems at his hero, Brad Caulderfield, such as finding his brother, Lanny, who has sworn to kill both Brad and their father. There are posses hunting them both too. A neighbouring father is also looking for vengeance and is threatening to throw the Caulderfield’s off their rented land if Lanny isn’t returned to pay for his crimes. Then there’s Stella and her baggage that also sees more people wanting to kill Brad. A plague of grasshoppers have an important part to play in the fast moving plot too.
When we first meet Brad he’s having problems with snakes, a confrontation that sees him being bitten, this gives the author the opportunity to add an interesting scene involving one of the new hypodermic syringes.
As the story unfolds it soon becomes clear that the reader can’t second guess on who will be alive at the end, and for those who are the final scenes are played out in a courtroom.
Once again Mark Bannerman has come up with a very entertaining read that has left me looking forward to reading another of his books very soon.
Mark Bannerman is a pseudonym used by Anthony Lewing and you can find an interview I did with him here.
Shadow of Guilt is officially released on August 31st but is available now from the usual Internet book stores.