By Stan R. Mitchell
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, February, 2012
Young Deputy Marshal Paul Zachary shouldn't have accepted that badge. And he certainly shouldn't have shot down a ruthless gunfighter in front of a crowd of onlookers at Belleville's busiest saloon. But now that the smell of gunpowder has faded and the blood has been scrubbed off the floor, Zachary is something he never wanted to be: a damned hero.
When Zachary's best friend is killed and the man's wife is abducted Zachary sets out to rescue the woman. In order to save her, Zachary must achieve what even the Army couldn't pull off: Cleaning out the lair of murderers, thieves, and cowhands who answer only to McConnell, the man behind the killing, who also owns most of the land and all of the law.
McConnell has bribed or buried every man who's ever stood up to him, including a good-sized Army detachment, so if Zachary plans to take down almost a hundred gunhands and rescue the wife of his murdered friend, Zachary must attempt the impossible. He knows it may cost him his life, but some wrongs must be made right.
If it’s action you want in a western then this book should be on your too read list. Descriptions of places and people are kept to a minimum so the story moves swiftly from one fight to the next. With the hero Paul, Little Man, Zachary going up against one hundred adversaries you don’t need me to tell you that this book contains an impressive death toll.
Unlike many western heroes, Little Man does not believe in giving his enemies an even chance. He will shoot them in the back or from ambush as he doesn’t want to risk being shot himself. Even so, taking on such a large number of gunhands does force him to round up a very small number of men to ride with him and these men are great characters in themselves.
The story is gritty and held my attention well and on reaching the end I was left hoping Stan R. Mitchell will write a sequel soon.