Well-researched, with a dose of literary license, this novel tackles issues prevalent on the frontier during Reconstruction and well into the future. Moira’s attempts to integrate natives into her small classroom are met with derision and violence, and the tried-and-true formula of the good guys against the town bullies works here.
The War Between the States is over, and the government has hired Delaney Crawford to eradicate bands of Cheyenne dog soldiers. His latest assignment brings him to the small mining community of Red Creek where he promptly shoots a friendly Cheyenne resident and takes a notch out of schoolteacher Moira Tully’s ear. He finds himself drawn to the attractive Miss Tully, who returns his attentions. Both are afraid of their pasts coming back to haunt them. As they run afoul of the town’s mining magnate, who has the support of the sheriff, Del gets the feeling he’s being played as no dog soldiers seem to be in the area. (SAMHAIN, Jan., 264 pp., $15.00)