My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I’m reading these in order and this is the fourth in the series. After a bumpy third book, this one gets more on track of the first two with similar quality and story telling. This is not as good as the first two, but still, involving story telling better than most all of the rest of the Johnstone Clan written books.
Seems this is the same writer as the other three books, for, again, there is an interest in trains, a Perry Mason-type trial and attention to detail missing in most Johnstone books. The writing is very good. The characters well written, as usual.
This is the first of the four where the outcome is pretty obvious from the start. The writer keeps the reader guessing as to just how the obvious ending could possibly occur with so many characters going in so many different directions. It all works well.
Bottom line: I recommend this book. 8 of 10.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I’m hooked. This rolls off the blocks at a steady speed and then charges to the end…which is more of a beginning as this series is still coming out after this initial book from 1984. Johnstone does an excellent job of portraying the area and time of the mid-west and west in the late 1800s. The characters are well drawn to the point of leaving you wanting more and thus wanting to buy more of the series. I will purchase more and I’m not even a fan of the western genre.
As I read, it struck me how the current PC generation would be offended by some in the book. The thing is that what happens in this book happens to us today, we just let it go, expect others (government) to protect us than actually attacking the problems. Johnstone in 1984 reflected how much of humanity has solved problems during the late 1800s and throughout the history of man. Most countries still solve such troubles the same way today.
Interesting to me are a few recent reviews of the book have that PC tinge. The idea that good and bad guys are old fashioned is a recent viewpoint by fellow Americans and certainly a new idea in the history of mankind. Johnstone’s book brings one back to reality and that’s something many Americans could use a good dose of.