By Peter Brandvold
Mean Pete Press, April 2013
Gideon Hawk hunts the notorious depraved killer, Pima Miller, into the Superstition Mountains of Arizona Territory. Hawk inadvertently shot the killer’s Apache woman, orphaning the killer’s infant son. The killer himself doesn’t seem to mind. He leaves them both behind to save himself and head into the mountains with his beautiful young guide, Jodi Zimmerman, whom he’s kidnapped from the Superstition Stage Relay Station.
Hawk, however, minds very much that his bullet meant for the killer, Miller, struck an innocent woman. He storms after Miller with his usual bloodlust.
The Superstitions are no picnic, however. The Apaches consider the range their Thunder-God’s abode, and the Chiricahuas don’t care for interlopers. And neither does the strange old desert rat known as the Dutchman who will do everything he can to keep his secret stash of ancient Apache gold just that--a secret.
Great to see Peter Brandvold bring back the Rogue Lawman, Gideon Hawk, in his seventh full length story.
As hoped this is just as savagely violent as the previous entries in the series and sees Hawk doing everything he can to kill Miller. This extremely fast moving tale could also be end of Hawk, his death something he is ready to accept and welcome as it means he can then join his long dead wife and son.
The Superstitions provide a hard, maze-like backdrop for this tough story to be played out in and the constant threat of Apache attack keeps all the characters on edge throughout.
The story has a dark tone but Peter Brandvold adds some humour too that matches the mood of the tale. His descriptions are gritty and visual and his characters memorable, be they man or woman – and for me it’s the latter that will remain in my memory most, one of whom we have met in previous Rogue Lawman books.
The book has a powerful ending that is sure to scar Hawk emotionally and make him an even tougher anti-hero (if that’s possible) and I for one am very eager to see where Hawk’s next trail will take him and I’m hoping Pete doesn’t make us wait too long to find out.