4 out of 4 stars
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Lewis Augustus Jones was killed when Pat was only seven. He was trying to break a wild mustang that was just too wild. This meant Lewis Patrick Jones (Pat) became the man of the house all too soon. Nevertheless, with the help of Sheriff Joshua Trinton, he still got to be a boy, too. The sheriff was a kind man to a friend and to town folk, but to rustlers, thieves, and gunslingers of the old Tucson and Yuma era, he was a mountain of a man. Hard as nails and lightning fast with that old Peacemaker. He stood six-foot-three, a solid two hundred pounds of mean when you broke the law or messed with his own.
Redbone by Jimmie N. Barnes evokes deep emotions in the reader. One is moved by the heroic sacrifice, yearning for freedom, justice, a bit of romance and immuration contained therein. I was pulled in right from the title and the prologue, where a U.S. marshal of a neighboring town to Sheriff Trinton's, finds himself face to face with the full wrath of the subject of an urban legend. Indeed, this storyline will rope in four other lawmen from different towns and at different time periods.
Tim, Pat's grandson and who is looking for a lucky break as a writer, is the protagonist in the story. He and his girlfriend, Sally, have found themselves with the unenviable task of discovering the legend. Tim's disposition allows him to be the right man for the job. He is discreet and rapt and doesn't mix business and pleasure. Sally, on the other hand, represents his gaiety. Through her, he is also able to see perspectives that were not apparent to him before, like employing a different method of tracking the bearer of the legend.
The author, Jimmie, has created stories and characters all throughout his school years. His long experience may perhaps account for the effective way he has dealt with pacing in his novel. Being even and consistent, sometimes the story slows down, for example, when James, Pat's childhood friend and blood brother, narrates to Tim how it was like growing up with his grandfather, and what it even means to be a blood brother. And yet at others, the confrontation between good and evil, for instance, makes the story fast-paced.
Jimmie's writing style is from the heart. It reflects his passion in his subject matter. I could sense his personality right to his religious slant. His work is animated, relaxed and sharp. Additionally, the story is majorly composed of dialogue (narrated by James to Tim), and conflict and confrontation supply the narrative tension that kept the story compelling.
In conclusion, this is an exemplary piece of work. The editing appeared professionally done. I only came across one missing word, a homophone error and a typo. I recommend the novel to Western fiction enthusiasts and to those who like doomsday style narratives. The violence and witchery therein also call for a mature reader. Conversely, those who dislike any amount of horror in their stories may find it a little bit unsuitable to them. For the above compelling reasons, I rate the book 4 out of 4 stars.
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